The Alchemist's Garden : A Midnight Stroll 
Gucci (2020)

Average Rating:  4 User Reviews

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The Alchemist's Garden : A Midnight Stroll by Gucci

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About The Alchemist's Garden : A Midnight Stroll by Gucci

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The Alchemist's Garden : A Midnight Stroll is a shared scent launched in 2020 by Gucci

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Reviews of The Alchemist's Garden : A Midnight Stroll by Gucci

There are 4 reviews of The Alchemist's Garden : A Midnight Stroll by Gucci.

Gucci has something here that isn't a total overpriced disaster, although I'm still not convinced A Midnight Stroll by Gucci (2020) is worth the price considering once again, the glut of options in this category. As part of the "The Alchemist's Garden" range, A Midnight Stroll is part of an arbitrary lineup that dispenses with the mixing, matching, and layering theme of the main line, in case you're just too lazy. As it stands already, the line was quite ridiculous for offering what are effectively over-priced essential oils you can layer on top over-priced eau de cologne bases, to custom-bash your own over-priced fragrance that still won't smell half-as-good if you'd just bought an Amouage or something. Speaking of Amouage, it seems that's who Gucci tries to tackle with A Midnight Stroll, as it's a really smoky, resinous, woody incense fragrance with all the sourness and musky headiness you'd expect from a Christopher Chong-era Amouage scent, so perhaps Morillas was revisiting some of that here.

Like I said, this isn't entirely pissing the pot away when it comes to price, as there aren't too many things you can buy which smell like this at any price, outside of a few Jacques Bogart scents or something from a budget Middle East brand like Lataffa which might get you close. Otherwise, the very smoky opening that reminds me of pit beef doesn't come too commonly from any perfume brand. Couple that with some frankincense materials and sour cypriol with a bit of cade oil, and you're in for an experience that would be almost worth it if Amouage Memoir Man (2010) or Amouage Interlude Man (2012) didn't already exist and both smell much better, avoiding any smokehouse BBQ associations in the process. Still, this is an interesting fragrance, potent enough too, but still at a pesky $300 price tag that means you'll really need to have a craving to smell like a Demeter Fragrance library rendition of a meat smoker to plunk down this kind of change. Expect all day performance, with sillage quieting down to moderate halfway through.

Since smoked meat invariably reads masculine to me, that's where I'm saying this one belongs, not that ladies can't enjoy the smell of BBQ brisket too. The frankincense and sour elements are the things that keep this probably the most-interesting for me, and if nothing else, this doesn't have the risk-adverse feel most Guccis do at any price point. Maybe this was once in the running to become Gucci Guilty Absolute pour Homme (2017), but was just a bit too daring for its own good? Might explain why something this so bizarrely and truly niche would turn up as part of this insipid haute bourgeoise trash line, when it really belongs as a part of the Etat Libre d'Orange lineup or Imaginary Authors even. I bet Morillas had fun making this scent, at least it feels like he had fun, as it's just so weird. Smokey sour wood and resins with a touch of unexpected medicinal synth oud only at the very end, A Midnight Stroll to me feels more like it should have been called A Midnight Snack more than anything else. It's not worth my hard-earned money, but it might be worth yours depending on your olfactive appetites. Neutral

One of the few scents that I enjoy from the garden collection. The incense caught my attention and the smokiness pulled me in. The performance is moderate and surprisingly good in comparison to the other scents in the collection. The drydown is a musky incense and a bit boring, but I'm still glad that I tried this out. Not bottle-worthy for me but it stood out for me in the line.

Dark frankincense dominated scent masterfully blended from extremely high quality ingredients. Rather than veer off on to an overly sweet path as some incense scents will do, this fragrance remains smoky, dry but never ashy. As the dry down progresses, a marked wood tone (cypress) asserts itself and warms the scent.

I like this take on incense, but believe this fragrance will polarize folks who encounter it. Definitely try before you buy, particularly at the pricing prevailing as of this writing.

Like all of the Gucci Alchemist's Garden scents I have tried, little effort seems to have been made to produce a widely appealing scent here. More power to Gucci for releasing so uncompromising a line of scents.

Projection is moderate in the cool weather for which this scent seems best suited. As with other Alchemist's Garden fragrances, longevity is good here. I get 10+ hours on my typically fragrance-devouring skin.

Bottom line: Excellent (4/5).

It is also true, as far as I am concerned, that the presentation on this line is very well done and taken with the scents' overall quality, presents a very aesthetically pleasing experience which helps, at least to some extent, to justify the pricing for this luxury designer/niche output. Thumbs up.

A Midnight Stroll is my first try of Gucci's collection The Alchemist's Garden and is a lovely dark blend of incense, cypress, and cedar, so it fittingly is incense-dominant but leans wood as well. It's dark and smooth, reminiscent in execution of By Kilian Incense Oud but fittingly with more incense and less oud. It's not quite as ashy as Profumum Roma Olibanum–which I usually regard as one of the best incense-dominant fragrances in the market–so it's an even smoother, slightly more mainstream/designer-esque incense-heavy mix that is nonetheless very wearable and fairly enjoyable, without much bite in the opening.

It performs pretty well overall, and in the US, is sold via the Gucci website and the department stores Saks Fifth Avenue and Nordstrom, and its retailing pricing is $330 for 100ml. Also, I usually don't gawk over bottle design the look of The Alchemist' Garden's bottles, most even more colorful than the black of A Midnight Stroll, are lovely.

Overall, A Midnight Stroll is great, and would certainly be made better by a lower price point, so I'd be curious to see if it's available anywhere on the secondary market, and I'll have to seek out some others in The Alchemist's Garden.

8 out of 10

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