Now, enough with my limited edition rant and on to the scent itself. Infusion de Fleur d’Oranger is meant to be a descendant of both the original Infusion d’Iris and Prada’s exclusive, boutique-only Fleur d’Oranger and I am happy to say the promise is met on both counts. I can immediately smell the connection with Infusion d’Iris which makes it an excellent flanker in my book. It is as if there is an invisible yet very much tangible thread connecting the two, even though Infusion de Fleur d’Oranger does not sport a trace of iris. (Or at least none discernible to my nose…) Infusion de Fleur d’Oranger makes use of both neroli essential oil (derived by the steam distillation of the bitter orange blossom) and orange blossom absolute (the product of the organic solvent extraction). Neroli is bitter, bracing, fresh, aromatic and utterly summery in nature, while the absolute is much more flowery, erotic, round, narcotic, heady and indolic in nature. A good example of the former would be the recently reviewed Mi Fa (in conjunction with gourmand notes, but still very recognizable) and an excellent example of the latter would be the aforementioned Prada exclusive Fleur d’Oranger. In Infusion de Fleur d’Oranger the absolute and the essential oil interweave in the most beautiful manner. Most of the time they merge, creating a beautiful smooth and round absolute base with a bracing essential oil top, but even more pleasurable are their eclipses, the peek-a-boo games they play with the wearer, when only one of the two is offered to the nose for inspection as the other is withdrawn to the background. Understandably, I am left mesmerized the whole time I am wearing this, since a different aspect of the beautiful perfume becomes salient as the scent wafts around me with each movement. The same soapy, aldehydic smoothness of the original Infusion d’Iris forms the surprisingly strong, pastel-colored backdrop of this perfume, while other white florals (jasmine, tuberose) are but supporting murmurs to the marvelous song of the orange blossom. The tuberose in particular becomes stronger in the drydown, but there is no question that it is the orange blossom that is this year’s limited edition diva.
Images: The beautiful painting (it translates the deafening silence and sense of anticipation of the hottest, midday hours in the summer perfectly in my eyes!), is by Tim Solliday. More of this artist's work can be viewed on the official website here.