Blog post by Gwen

La Couche du Diable – deep and rich and opulent

Whenever a new Serge Lutens fragrance is launched, a wave of anticipation rolls through the fragrance world and, if it turns out to be Lutens' first oud fragrance well, interest is definitely piqued. I'm speaking of La Couche du Diable, of course. The name itself has been the topic of much, sometimes heated, discussion on various scent sites. Does it mean 'the devil's layer'?  Does 'la couche' mean diaper? Luten's website doesn't offer up any clues:

"No longer does one need to go to Hell to summon the Devil. Seek, and the Earth shall provide! I now no longer turn to a blazing fire Choosing burning embers over fiery flames, my remorse conquers the night."

The consensus seems to be that 'La Couche du Diable' translates as 'The Devil's Bed.'

Lutens' first oud. I was excited to try it, and now I'm excited each time I wear it.

It opens with notes of sweet tangerine and succulent orange warmed by cinnamon. They open your nose to an opulent and luxurious oud accord. It smells sweet, warm, resinous, balsamic, woody and boozy. On me, I can smell each of these facets one at a time and then, at other times, they come together in a beautiful blend as though on a desert breeze. As it develops, the heart of saffron and rose wafts up through the oud. The rose is aromatic and deep, while the saffron is warm and mildly earthy. The floral notes seem to heighten the animalic aspects of the oud before a note of rich, sensuous leather appears. Labdanum, sweetest-scented and resinous, swirls into the scent just before I smell lush note of jammy plum, a Lutens' signature. The oud lingers down to the base, which is woody, warm, ambery and balsamy.

The drydown is sweetly sensual, dark and mesmerizing. Oud can be loud, harsh and OTT, but the high quality of the oud in La Couche du Diable and the way it is managed make this ingredient more accessible, more intriguing and more wearable than some other oud-based fragrances.

I confess, I don't get the name at all, but then Lutens' marketing has always been a bit off-kilter.

To my nose, La Couche du Diable is more about the influence Morocco has had on Lutens – the oud, the Damask rose, the labdanum, the richness, the opulence.  This is a Serge Lutens fragrance for those who love Serge Lutens fragrances.

Check out La Couche du Diable in our Shop.