The scent 44 N 03 E by Richard Luscher Britos was created to evoke the 'Mystic Violet Hills' of southern France. The lavender plants of the area have a unique pungent, rich, sweet scent.....the result of necessity and adapting to grow in the unique terrain of the area. The notes chosen were to reflect the plants present in the region as well as the wildflower honey and the local ice
cream....interesting, as I've never imagined those scents together, so moving on......
Upon initial spray, the lavender, vanilla, and a lemony note are recognizable. The lemon, not listed in the notes (though that doesn't really mean anything) may be an early interpretation of pine, but it seems more like citrus to me. I get the flat, sticky, slightly mentholated feel of labdanum as well, evoking a Mediterranean space. It doesn't interpret as amber here, but more like the scent from a bottle of the sticky resin..... sappy and smells more of sweet, pungent plant. The labdanum is present in a short, brief blast, quickly stepping back to allow the top notes to linger while still threading through the green.
Suddenly, new pine needles are erupting in tufts from the ends of boughs on a tree. It's fresh and breezy, like early spring, when the new needles add a soft pale green to the edges of the pine tree. The citric lavender element enhances the bright tone and keeps the pine from becoming Christmas-like. It's definitely evocative of a rocky sub-alpine plateau. Here in the high desert the spring air is thick with the scent of warm pine and juniper. I'm enjoying the same feel in this scent. It feels quite 'clean' without being overly light or soapy.
I'm finding the juniper here to be very interesting. My home is surrounded by acres of juniper, and in the fall we are assaulted with its unique signature aroma. I find the scent of the tree itself to be reminiscent of cat urine when experienced in large quantities, especially when rain hits the trees after a drought period. I never really got the "fruity juniper" analogy. Juniper, in both nature and the essential oil, is very sharp. I believe the fruity referral is the result of people relating it to gin and the effervescence of the drink. Since it's usually served with a bit of lime or lemon I think citrus has now been corraled into the idea of juniper. Therefore, I'm getting the gin quality here more that the actual plant. Amidst the juniper/citrus, you are treated to the impression of wildflowers and a touch of honey.
The lavender and honey are a wonderful addition, making the scent transition from herbal to resinous seamlessly. As you reach the top of the plateau, the plants eventually give way to mostly rocky terrain and a clarity of air and sunlight. The scent warms, and vanilla is here in the labdanum, at first feeling like the specks you see in vanilla bean ice cream but then melding together to create the familiar amber accord that I've smelled so many times. The pine is still there, a reminder of the lower altitude, but your focus is on the notes supporting the structure. Eventually, the labdanum and lavender make for a sturdy masculine-leaning base. The end stages of the scent last forever.
This scent started out relatively light but as the airy top notes dissipated, it became more and more resinous and balsamic. The inage it portrays is one of the rim of sunlight that glows around a single dark cloud. This scent starts out a lot lighter than the listed notes would have you believe, but in the end you get the feels of a warm enclosure. There's no smoke, no tar, no wood, which makes it feel like a truly unisex alpine scent even though in brief stages it might appear more feminine or masculine. It has the feel of a fougere, but with pine replacing the oakmoss.
This is a nice scent....I feel like it's a bit redundant as I've smelled quite a few like it, but the opening notes of this fragrance give it a bit of a different edge. This is great for people who love Filles En Aiguilles, as it's similar but doesn't contain the incense. I wouldn't need to own this one as I am a big fan of the Lutens, but those who don't love smoke in their fragrances might find this to be a good alternative.