As a long-time gamer there is a concept in the roleplaying versions of gameplay called min/max. The idea is that when you design a character you put all your resources into enhancing a couple of specific traits; that’s the max. Which means many of the other traits are so low they become obvious weak spots; that’s the min. If you are part of a team that can cover for the min then your max can be extremely valuable allowing you to punch above your level. I was reminded of this gaming concept as it pertains to perfume with Parle Moi de Parfum Orris Tattoo.
Perfumer Michel Almairac founded his personal line in 2016 with a set of eight inaugural perfumes. The brand aesthetic is to keep to minimal ingredients while looking for maximum effect. Over the first eight this balance was achieved more often than it wasn’t. In Orris Tattoo it reaches an apotheosis.
If you are going to design perfume like this, you require a keynote which is multi-faceted. In the case of Orris Tattoo that is already baked into the name. Orris has so many facets it takes some skill to design, so the different facets have some time in the spotlight. M. Almairac finds ways to max out his orris butter.
Orris Tattoo first displays its carroty style. In some uses orris butter has an earthier nature. In this perfume it comes off with a sweeter tint. I suspect some carrot seed in a tiny amount was added to pick this thread out in the early moments. It then transforms into one of my favorite incarnations of orris as a yeasty scent of rising dough arrives. This is a lovely example of how orris shifts. Again, I’m not sure what is used as a supporting note to enhance this, but something is there. I was sort of expecting powder to be next but got thrown a curveball as it instead tilts towards an astringent floral quality. Much less flamboyant than I expected but it falls right in line with what came before. This heads towards a nutty final phase bolstered by a tiny amount of a synthetic woody ingredient.
Orris Tattoo has 10-12 hour longevity and average sillage.
Orris Tatto is an excellent iris perfume. If you like the note this is one worth trying. If you are put off by powdery iris I would also think you might want to try this, too. By using several min ingredients M. Almairac produces a max orris.
Disclosure: this review is based on a sample I purchased.