Friday, October 17, 2008

A Taste of Heaven by Kilian : Perfume Review

Do you remember Hotwheels, the little toy cars with the thermochromic paint that would instantly change color when bathed in cold or hot water? Not the most poetic of comparisons I admit, but A Taste of Heaven really is like a Hotwheel: It changes in such a fast-paced, and more importantly, fascinating manner, the mind races bewildered, trying to catch up in wonderment.

It all starts out with such a huge blast of lavender, it seems not only unthinkable but also impossible that this predominant note can be escaped. A bracing, light citrus freshness accompanies the herbaceous scent at first, and there are also hints of dewy yet deep greenery. Blink and there’s a change: the lavender note seems to get ever more animated and lively. The relaxing, well-rounded, aromatic scent of Lavender Barreme blends beautifully with the strong, camphorous notes of Lavandin Abrialis, creating an almost dizzying display of the humble looking flower in the mind’s eye. In terms of smell, this lavender is so extreme it can only be described as operatic. I don’t generally like my lavender served straight up, so I only truly start loving A Taste of Heaven when finally it turns from bracing and aromatic to smooth and sweetly vanillic. For a while the scent appears to be comforting and almost gourmand, edible in nature. Then the unbelievable happens: the fragrance undergoes a change so extreme, I can only describe it as awesome in the original sense of the word. It becomes warmer and warmer and the olfactory sensation it produces is so surprisingly effusive, it almost feels as if one is witnessing a chemical reaction taking place on the skin. It seems like all this heat, all this wonderful warmth comes out of nowhere, a sinister smile full of sexual innuendos suddenly coming to knock you off your feet. Because yes, this is not the comforting warmth of a hearth, but the heat of sexual energy unhinged. Sexy, animalic, barbaric and ravaging, the heat is almost volcanic. As you might remember the first time I experienced this scent I was in public... My first reaction to the change was a simple “It’s getting warmer now”, quickly followed by “Oh my God” and then I was finally left speechless and blushing. Having jolted us to attention with this explosive, shocking, ultra-sensual stage, A Taste of Heaven calms down again and slowly eases itself into its final, comfortable incarnation, which will last for hours (and into the next day if applied in the evening). All its animalic elements now come down from a boil to a simmer and can be appreciated individually. The slightly vanillic lavender is musky and warm, there are hints of tender, subtle leather, the patchouli is soft and dry as powder and the utterly beautiful, erotic ambergris note ties it all together... The whole in this case too tends to be more than the sum of its parts: the end result smells incredibly human and warm, like the scent of your own skin, sensual and very, very personal. To clarify this, I will give an example: I have tested this with a number of friends during the drydown stage, and most of them struggle to separate the smell of the perfume from the smell of my own skin when they do not have previous experiences with A Taste of Heaven. It feels like the borders between the skin’s own scent and the scent of the fragrance are blurred, hazy. However, once they have experienced the fragrance on their own skin from start to finish, they can always clearly detect it thereafter. It will come as no surprise thus, when I say that the drydown of A Taste of Heaven is very similar to the drydown of Miller Harris’ L’air de Rien, which has also been extensively compared with the scent and familiarity of the human skin.


Anonymous said...


Just wanted to drop a quick note to say Brava! on your previous post ("Thoughts on the By Kilian Controversy"), as well as to say that today's review of A Taste of Heaven leaves me longing for a taste of it, too.

I've never sampled the By Kilian line, but I have been quite befuddled, like you, by people's reaction to it. Outrageous pricing? Hmm, I don't hear much outrage (some disappointment, yes, but not outrage) over the pricing of some of the Amouage's, of the Le Labo's, or the Vero Profumo line. It seems many perfume lovers, myself included, are willing to shell out the money for these lines, so it's a bit perplexing why the By Kilians are drawing such ire!

Anonymous said...

Let's see...
Little devil Diva went for a walk and suddenly felt hot because of Kilian's scent:

2 explanations:

one - you are too busy this semester with your studies+blog+perfume, that there was no time left for fun... hahaha


Finally you found what does the trick for you. ..hahahaha

Now, even living the Netherlands, one should never have sexual urges and run naked around campus!!!!
You can be arrested, you know it, than I will have to come down to bail you out, blablablabla....
I advice you to label this bottle with a huge sticker - for hot blondes only - in case of emergency, lock yourself at home!

Now that I had my fun and laughed at you, let's go back to work:

I have 2 perfumes that when you feel they are fading away at dry down, out of the sudden I feel a
new blossom of the bouquet. It goes for Coco mademoiselle and also Summer by Kenzo.
It is like this urge you had, but translated to perfume notes.

Secondly, I am not sure I like this lavender you described. I love lavender but for home fragrances. I have a problem with loud notes on my skin.
Anyways, You got me curious....hahaha!

Made me remember that famous scene with Meg Ryan and Billy Cristal at the dinner's.
I pictured you and someone (boyfriend) smelling your own skin screaming YES a perfume boutique, than the ladies run to buy whatever you are...hahahahaha!!!!

Enjoy this weeken. study less, wear tons of it, make this guy you are dating a happy man!!!!

Loved it Diva, you have such a way of evolving us the readers... amazes me sometimes.
Kisses darling.

Unknown said...

Divina, you have been spritzed, er, tagged! You're it!

Mary said...

I've tagged you as well, Divina! Anya beat me to it.