– a review of Profumi Bruno Acampora Blu
In these dun, drab days when the hangdog brown hound days of winter stretch out in front of us as endless as the Pacific ocean, it seems as if summer is an impossible dream of heat and light. It exists only to torment those of us in the Northern Hemisphere who crave dreamier, happier alternatives to rain, to sleet, to snow and wind.
Last night, as the rain drummed on my rooftop and slithered down my windowpanes and I thought chill and rain and wind were all I would ever know, I remembered a treasure I brought back from Florence that might – you never know – banish those winter blahs to the cold, dark, dank shadows from which they came.
This little treasure and I had met before, met just long enough for me to turn my head and realize precisely just what a treasure it was, before life, literature and distractions got in the way. Yet last night it seemed I remembered it by chance, serendipity or synchronicity, who can say?
In a small sample vial this little cerulean treasure bloomed, aptly named Blu.
The Naples-based perfume house of Bruno Acampora is one of those cult secret brands so über-cool many of you may not have heard of either the elegant Bruno Acampora himself – jetsetter, globetrotter, perfumer – or the perfumes, but dear readers, I tell you… they are all of them beautifully composed, and unusually presented in their aluminum flasks with cork stoppers and wax seals, like fragrant Graeco-Roman artifacts someone encountered while strolling through the ruins of Herculaneum.
Yet Blu is neither strange nor anything less than very modern. It is a deceptively simple take on that terror of all flowers, the tuberose, but it’s not at all like any other tuberoses I know, and I know most of the tuberoses worth knowing. Not the intimidating Gothic splendor of Serge Lutens’ Tubereuse Criminelle, nor the velvet-earthy-tuberose chocolate of Exotic Island Perfumes’ Flor Azteca, nor even the wintergreen salicylate wonders of Editions de Parfums Carnal Flower.
Instead of a journey into the dark heart of tuberose, Blu offers another kind of journey, another kind of mood and another kind of emotion, all of which can be wrapped up in the happy Italian phrase:
Dolce far niente.
This is a tuberose that lives for that exhilarating moment where you find yourself in the absolute perfect place at the absolute perfect time in an absolutely flawless state of mind. This moment is not the time to do unless it’s to laugh nor to go unless it’s to dance, but simply to be whole, entire and entirely in this singular instant, when life is good, love is grand and the moment and the summer all somehow gild themselves in your memory – or your fantasy, at least.
Blu is another secret story tuberose never told on your skin and you never suspected. Somewhere in the length and breadth of all a tuberose contains lay a carefully concealed and very happy laugh just waiting to burst. Who knew?
A laughing tuberose that never veers from its happy state of mind, not when it’s joined by a flirtatious wink of an orange nor even the dappled shade of sandalwood that flickers underneath Signorina Tuberose. Some long, long time later, she leaves with a wave and another girlish giggle, and only the sunshine yellow ylang ylang is left to sweeten the memories she left in her fragrant wake.
For if this tuberose is no signorina, she is at least and always young at heart and in her soul, which is really where youth matters – and is needed! – most of all.
Meanwhile back in a gray, drab, wet corner of Northern Europe, I am carried far away on an superbly elegant tuberose laugh, to the magical isle of Capri and an infinite summer as incendiary blue as the sky above and the sea far, far down below, as blinding bright as the white marble balustrade and the sparkling jewels of your sandals, when life consists only of the sweet, flawless nothings of being alive in a beautiful moment as only a tuberose moment could ever hope to be.
When the sea, the sky and the summer seems artless, happy and infinitely, perfectly blue. The statue above points the way… to Capri, to dolce far niente, to the many shades of blue below and to an exuberant tuberose laugh called Blu.
Notes: Tuberose, orange, sandalwood and ylang ylang. (Although it’s not listed, I detect a smidge of jasmine in there, somewhere. Not a bad thing.) Longevity is outstanding, but trust your local sillage monster . a little goes a long way!
With very special thanks to Sonia Acampora, who did so very much to welcome and illuminate an unknown Danish perfume blogger at Pitti Fragranze 2013.
Disclosure: A sample of Bruno Acampora Blu perfume oil was provided by Sonia Acampora.