A terrific fragrance. I recommend reading JTD's review below. It helped me appreciate this more than I already did. Previously I glossed this as an old school fougere with anise notes. Now I attend more to the specifics of what happens as it warms and softens. A nice dance between form and content.
Imagine yourself to a jungle in the winter after a snowstorm,the kind that covers the pine trees, the sky full of stars,then coming inside by the fire to drink hot peppermint tea.that night,and this perfume,can make you feel kind of crazy and happy at the same time.so mysterious like a forest from some Fairytale.very natural smelling,a natural, aromatic composition inspired by the scents of nature.Ethereal and romantic, poetic and philosophical.
This has a lovely spicy opening-pepper and ginger,very clear and then becomes green,with pine and anise and a cold bpast of confier,before finally finishing woody and balsamic.balsam fir smells a bit minty,citrus,pine which they've conveyed beautifully.in fact there is the sweet warmth of the woods and the fresh coolness of the night, brightened up by spicy herbals. what i love about FDA is that's playes between cold and warm, light and dark,masculine and feminine.The sillage is typical for a L'Artisan.
I'm a woman, and I can say that I'm an absinth fan. But I don't find my beloved plant in this, while I find it in many green fragrance. This one is grey, opening with an earthy mix of thyme, rosemary and other dry herbs and leading to a Lush sweet spicy greenness. Great and different.
To me, this comes off as a stereotypical, searingly obnoxious men's aftershave. It's headache inducing and lacks any kind of humor or relief from its relentless character. I love the notes as listed on paper and some of the reviews sound wonderful, but it doesn't pan out for me. Up close, many of the notes are there--abisnthe, pine, anise, etc. But the sum of their parts doesn't add up as I'd hoped. They coalesce into such a conventional, predictable smelling masculine (from a bygone era of leisure suits and mustaches) it's hard to imagine this is what Giacobetti intended. Anyway, give it a shot because my experience seems to be in the minority, however, I can't see it any other way as much as I've tried.
Boozy greens. Forest-like. Lightly bitter. The middle notes are muddled. Slight spice, slight smoked wood. My skin seems to suck up this juice. I keep applying more, to get a better feel for this - it's just "not there". Disappointing. I wanted to like this one.
I get some pine and fir in the base; even that, is light. I did enjoy the top but, the rest? Nada.
In his painting L'Absinthe, Edgar Degas depicts the ruinous effects of absinthe in the way that a photojournalist might. It shows two bleary drunks, a man and a woman, decrepit and broken down from absinthe abuse. Because of the harm it evidently caused, the drink was banned for more than a century before finally being allowed back on sale again in 2005. This, in theory, would have allowed Olivia Giacobetti to experiment with the drug, as well as giving her the chance to smell it. Whatever the reality of this speculation, her Fou d'Absinthe (Absinthe Addict) is a sparkling 21st century interpretation of the drink, quite different from the hazy wastedness seen in the canvas.
The juice itself mimics the anisic taste of the sugared spirit which is distilled from artemisia, green anise, fennel and other herbs. (Pernod is a sanitised version produced without the psychoactive ingredient.) The odour is boozy and a little green but it's more than just a simple presentation of the smell. A gassy-hissy note speaks about intoxication and the booze, of course, denotes drunkenness. A sweet brownness in the depths gives us the oral pleasure of the taste. Not only does Giacobetti invoke the Green Fairy, as they used to affectionately call L'absinthe, she also illustrates its effect on the mind; portraying and interpreting, showing and telling, this is an ambitious work.
The perfume is based on an anisic fougère - anise being the core of the absinthe odour, and as anise is commonly used in fougère, Giacobetti took the obvious course of action and composed an anisic fougère with a twist. But in this case taking Route One is not without its problems. The elegant fougère has very different connotations to the bohemian (or disfunctional) lifestyle we associate with absinthe drinkers, and the image of Homme Raffiné associating with wretched addict is somewhat unusual to say the least.
There is a curious powdery note that comes out in wearing that doesn't relate to either of these characterisations. Powder is not a typical fougère note and it doesn't fit with any description of booze. I'm not sure it says anything about being off your head either.
Fou d'Absinthe is a kind of magic realist fantasy, a combination of venomous hiss and Azzaro pour Homme set on a brown woody vetiver and sweet gourmand base; and all of this overlooked by an unrelated powder - that whispers of the bordello perhaps?
Bizarre it may be, but FdA's dissolute gas light fougère has - like an addictive drug - a certain nagging appeal.