Eau Eternelle by S Poncet

Year: 2011

Notes: grapefruit, lemon, mandarin, petitgrain, rosemary, lavender, jasmine, water lily, pink lotus, carnation, clove, patchouli, guaiac wood, oakmoss, sandalwood
Having previously worked with various fragrance houses, including Thierry Mugler and Amouage, Sabine Poncet has now launched her own perfume line. According to her website, each fragrance will be inspired by a specific artist and form part of a limited edition collection, which will also include jewellery and a silk scarf.

Inspired by the work of Katherine Betinis, Eau Eternelle starts out with a pleasantly sweet citrus and aldehydic opening, which harks back to the days of classic perfumery. The aromatic aspects of the composition are quite subdued but a mentholated nuance resides for some time. For a brief moment, an aquatic chord presents itself (probably due to the water lily) but is soon overwhelmed by the jasmine.

As it develops, a spicy aroma comes into focus, courtesy of the combination of pink lotus, carnation and clove. With a dominantly floral heart, all the components swirl around and intermingle but one gets the impression of structural uncertainty, with a sweet meandering demeanour. As the woods eventually surface, one can discern an undercurrent of liquorice from the oakmoss but barely any noticeable or conventional woody flourishes.

So, is it a fruity-floral, a modern chypré or a spicy-oriental? It's really hard to say and that's the problem – one gets the impression that it's trying to satisfy as many bases as possible, much at the expense of a firm sense of identity. Yes, it's rather complex and well-composed, with an old-fashioned sensibility, but it's nowhere near as sophisticated as it would like to be perceived.

Sillage and longevity are both moderate.