As if I needed more Serge Lutens in my modest collection – here I go blind buying again.
So, I had a patchouli craving recently that my Intrigant Patchouli wasn’t quittteeee hitting, and figured that this would reach the spot :)
Borneo 1834 opens with a wonderful blast of pure patchouli. The patchouli that I needed! It has that real head-shop stuffiness that I’d hoped for but without the hemp-like greenery and no sour accords like in CB I Hate Perfume’s scary patchouli…
There’s an instant sweetness from a wonderful cocoa that comes into play, and to be honest – this accord isn’t as “dark” as I thought it would be. It is almost milky chocolate to me, verging on gourmand, but no complaints – the combination is beautiful.
So patchouli + chocolate = Angel? Not quite. The patchouli here is lavishly sleek, whilst being familiar in its dank, deep scent – it remains tame and completely in control. The sweetness in Borneo, unlike the Mugler, is also in complete control, richer – more exotic, with a delicate camphor laying over the top – adding an almost medicinal astringency to the patchouli and cocoa. The camphor is far from the intensity of Tuberuese Criminelle (for example), and instead has the sheer, sharp aspect that some great ouds have. It adds an age and a chilling subtlety to the foggy atmosphere.
I get a very subtle tobacco, as well as a liquorice note – in the same, but more toned down, style of Parfumerie Generale’s Aomassai. All intermingled with the cocoa and bitter patchouli, Borneo 1834 is dark and perplexing whilst being light and delicate on the skin.
The fragrance remains relatively linear, with a wonderful resinous base acting like a dark, sticky veil. The resins give off that breathy/slightly sweaty feel that they sometimes do (I normally get this with myrrh), I’d almost have thought there was the tiniest bit of cumin in here, but the fragrance isn’t spicy at all.
Borneo 1834 never gets overwhelming with its intensity as it wears light up close, but scents the air all around you. I’m thoroughly enjoying it already and am sure I will grow to absolutely love it (as I have with my Chypre Rouge). Whilst I don’t have a great deal of experience with patchouli compositions, this combination is a classic and I’m sure I’ll be wearing it all year round. A sexy, mysterious fragrance that is slighty dirty, and almost edible – gorgeous!
Borneo 1834 50ml EDP Serge Lutens – 95 Euros sergelutens.com