måndag 29 oktober 2012

Frapin - Speakeasy

Picture:This building at 1223 Connecticut Ave, NW, (the MCCXXII Club)
 was known as the Mayflower Club. It was considered the swankiest Prohibition-era speakeasy in DC
Author:dbking, Wikimedia commons (cc) some rights reserved 
Speakeasy was the nickname of more elegant illegal establishments selling alcoholic beverages during the Prohibition era in the United States. What could be more appropriate name for a fragrance from the old congachouse Frapin which since aboust ten years also has perfume as one of its businesslines. Speakeasy is a creation by perfumer Marc-Antoine Corticchiato who usually works for his own perfumehouse Parfum d'Empires.

Speakeasy starts with a clean and pronounced leather accord. The leather smells new and fresh, the image is of light cognaccolored leather of a good quality used in a fine handbag. The leathersmell is very natural to my nose and mot mixed up with so many other notes as it often is. In the opening stages there something similat to the leather in Montale Aoud Leather but the Frapin leather is smoother, better balanced and  lacks the almost aquatic note in the top notes of Aoud Leather. In its texture and appearance, even if different in the leathery smell, Speakeasy reminds me of a masculine Cuir de Lancome. After a whlie a minty note appears and it or something else, adds a metallic vibe to the fragrance which becomes even  more masculine than in the first accords. Here a bold 1989s maco tobacco-leather comes to my mind and will stay there during the whole dry down as the metallic leather will be there more or less also in the coming stages: Gianfranco Ferre Man. Speakeasy is a tuned down, smoother, rounder and contemporary interpretation on a similar theme with GF Man. As Speakeasy reaches the basenotes, suddenly it gets warm and the metallic note steps a bit aside in favor of a round, mouthwatering, boozy, ruhmlike note (which I think is davana) supported by some light tobbacco. A certain tamed sweetness helps to ground the delicious boozy accord, it's almost as a cognac barrel. In this stage there is similarities to the boozy davana of  L'Oiseau de Nuit by Parfumerie Générale but less sweet and subtler in Speakeasy. Somewhere in the middle of the basenotes suddenly a very clean, almost airy immortellenote shows up, it's not the dense syrupy version that sometimes is too dominating in leather/tobacco fragrances. The shift from the clean, light leather over the very masculine metallic stage to the round, delicious ruhm and cognac barrel notes accompanied by fresh tobacco base is very interesting, something happens during the whole dry down. The final accords evokes the picture of well used leather clubchairs in which gentlemen has lighten their cigars and sipped their cognacs for decades.

Even if a bit more on the masculine side in the middlenots of the unisexspectra, I think Speakeasy is genderless and I think it was pleasant to wear on a quite chilly Octoberday. It's a perfect fragrance for autumn- and winterdays as for chilly spring evenings. Sillage is medium and longevity more than 12h.

Rating: 5

Notes: Ruhm, orange, lime, geranium, mint, labdanum, styrax, tobacco, leather, musk, immortelle, tonkabeen

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