The opening wave encloses me with its floral onslaught - think lots of ylang-ylang with an undertone of a slightly waxy tuberose. There is, however, a brief breakthrough of citrus - ripe oranges and mandarin - but soon a nice mint aroma starts permeating the floral fest, the latter being enforced by a strong and only minimally powdery jasmine. Other florals that unfold with time are a Damascene rose and some champace. Interestingly, the mint is not just transient freshening up the florals, but it linger for quite a while as a significant contributor as a whole.
The next phase adds a benzoin from Thailand, which is smooth but also quite distinct, and develops a camphoric undertone that is as unexpected as it is fitting in well with the rest. A boozy note - a bit like a Kentucky Bourbon - with herbal hints - thyme and laurel - are in the background, with the boozy note the stronger one of the two on me.
The rest is a mix of woods and some restrained animalic components, although the benzoin lingers on quite prominently for a long time. I get a nice rose wood with lots of cedar, and touches of sandalwood way back in the background; the sandal is the weakest of the woodsy triad on me. The animalic offering consists of a gently crisp civet, which is associated with a bit of castoreum as well as a salty aroma of an ambergris. Towards the end, an ambery dark-ish musky component is evident, but a stronger labdanum in particular develops into a late addition that gives the final stages another twist altogether.
I get moderate sillage, excellent projection, and eight hours of longevity on my skin.
This spring scent is an olfactory tour de force, with its citrus, floral, woodsy and more animalic phases, which are not clearly demarcated and show lots of overlaps. Such a vast array of components would usually lead to many of them not being able to develop fully, but here nearly each of them has its moment of prominence in the olfactory limelight, its "minutes of fame", some longer and some shorter, which, although not always sustained, is quite a remarkable feat; some ingredients are more vivid than others though. The quality of the ingredients is excellent, and the blending outstanding. 4.25/5
Superior blending. Perhaps the best from the house at least so far in my humble opinion. Such a Cornucopia of notes which makes ones head spin but it all seems to work like a Grande Symphony.
Magnificent production. Thank you Mr Gardoni!
Opens with medicinal lavendar, orange and grapefruity smell that gives one the impression of a great smelling citronella candle. Theres a yellow ylang, labdanum, and whisper of civet. Its a nice composition, smells like a good quality, blending is good. Unisex, would smell great on anyone. Just not maybe for me.
With its 23 notes, MEM looks daunting on the page and one expects a jumble of olfactory sensations. The reality is quite different.
Initially I detect a beautiful tuberose, though it is not listed as a note. This is perhaps an overdose of Ylang. This is quickly followed in succession by lavender, peppermint and vanilla. So far fresh and uplifting, with that rich creamy ylang/tuberose hovering over all.
Five minutes in the civet appears, a quiet restrained civet, along with the musk and castoreum, thus providing a new, warm, animalic base for the creamy florals and crisp lavender/peppermint to dance upon.
The blending is stellar. One gets the impression of a Guerlain from the 1930s or 1940s. It's that well done.
Into the dry down we are in Jicky territory lavender and vanilla, but the brightness of the peppermint is still present in the background.
MEM is a true surprise in this modern perfume world of chemical and synthetic ingredients. It all smells real and it smells well thought out, both rarities nowadays. Highly recommended for those into vintage scents. The price tag is daunting, but this is one of the very few highly priced items that may just be worth the investment.
Antonio Gardoni is the most talented perfumer on earth and this is his Magnum Opus. An absolute treatise on Lavender. Herbal, sweet, floral, fresh, warm... Bogue makes holographic future florals for the next century.
If I had to choose one fragrance to wear for the rest of my days, it would be MeM. Pure happiness.
MEM leads off with an excellent billowing lavender, the kind that lets in nostril-clearing eucalyptus-like notes and gummier licorice into its usual soap-and-metal charge. This feels like fields upon fields of the stuff and it's probably the first time it has truly excited me in perfumery (by contrast, lavender for real I find plenty exciting). Walk back into a room where you have been sitting and there is that lavender, impossibly vital, a touch camphoraceous, fresh as a breeze. The citruses in the opening have been beautifully deployed to pair with the lavender the bitter peel effects merging perfectly into the medicinal edge of its profile.
Hereafter, MEM diverges somewhat on paper it had promised brassy, fat and dirty jasmine as the floral entertainment but on my skin the florals were muted subsuming themselves in the development of the lavender main theme. Bubbles of olfactory sensations keep popping the brightness of something minty, suggestions of caramel and burnt sugar, malty comfort. So, yes, MEM is complex as has often been noted but it's a complexity within a clearly articulated theme. As for the animalic elements, nothing really wagged its tail at me whatever is in here is kept well within the bounds of decency. What I appreciate most about MEM is how it zigzags between field-fresh lavender, medicine chest and grand classical perfumery of layers upon layers without any dizziness.
However, wonders be, much, much later in the day, almost without my noticing it, there was the jasmine, with not a single clean thought on its mind, doing unspeakable things with an ever-so-willing musk. The lavender was now taking a back seat, but enjoying the view, so to speak.