Linfedele Haiku starts with a pungent O’Driu herbal signature, but something immediately is toning it down to a much more wearable level. Gone is the intense olive note that often penetrates the opening so aggressively, and instead it is replaced with a herbal lavender-like aroma, medicinal, cool and absolutely beautiful. Although entirely natural, there is an unusual chlorinated note in the opening, or maybe I’m mistaking a citrus accord for this hyper-clean smell contrasting with the more bitter herbal and animal notes underneath.
The herbal heart is a large dose of geranium, heated with a clove-y/carnation and sweetened with vanilla and pine. The vanilla is the O’Driu vanilla I fell in love with in Leva – an almost de-sweetened, dense vanilla unlike any other. A coffee note also comes in, reminding me slightly of the spicy/floral/coffee of Tango (Aftelier) – although these are very different. The geranium, a predictable inclusion for O’Driu, slots into this bizarre combination surprisingly well – in writing, it shouldn’t work at all. But the semi-sweet vanilla/coffee/clove paired with an intensely herbal geranium – is brilliant.
A bitter tea like smell that turns out to be mate (green tea) – I mistook it for champaca – also joins in the heart and leads Linfedele Haiku to the drydown. A big dose of castoreum (i’m assuming all natural?) shows up too, adding a furry, soiled, animalic presence to the fragrance – leaving behind it’s “nutty” character which I often associate with it (maybe more common in synthetic castoreum).
My appreciation for these ingenious inclusions and combinations has improved tenfold since I first began sampling these last year. My love for herbal notes and greenery has also increased dramatically though so I’m finding these much more enjoyable. Linfedele Haiku proves to be much easier on the nose compared to earlier releases by the house though. The complicated accords here are cleverly rounded out into something quieter and more supple on the skin – maybe the heavy use of vanilla (in O’Driu terms)?
Linfedele Haiku subtly floats around on the skin: a dreamy geranium – warmed up with the mate, a touch of great patchouli, carnation and sweetened with pine and vanilla – the herbal signature just staining the rest of the notes and the coffee only just about perceptible. It’s gorgeous, and without a doubt one of my favourite O’Driu fragrances. Definitely recommended for those interested in the line but not sure where to begin.
Linfedele Haiku 50ml O’Driu – 180 Euros http://www.odriu.com