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44°N 03°E Mystic Violet Hills – You’ve got to try this….. – January 19, 2015 New fragrance Listing

Image - Wikimedia Commons - Wild lavender , Lozère-Cevennes, Causse-Méjean, France

“You’ve got to try these” her note said. I opened the small package that came with the note and found five decants with perfumes I had never heard of.

When a trusted friend makes an exciting fragrance discovery and wants to share it with me, well, I’m all nostrils! That’s how I discovered the five terroir perfumes from Swiss niche perfume house Richard Lüscher Britos Terrioir Perfumes. The fragrances are outstanding and I wanted to learn more about this Richard Lüscher Britos.

It turns out that it’s not one person but three - Malvin Richard, son of perfumer Jean-Claude Richard, Lukas Lüscher, a high school friend of Richard, and Serena Britos a childhood friend of Richard’s. These three young friends discovered a shared a passion for fragrance, a love of nature and travel and a niche perfume house was born.

The Richard Lüscher Britos website says they were fascinated by perfumes which show a unique character and which through their selective raw material, tell stories of their place of origin. This led to the dream of perfumes solely composed by natural components of highest quality which tell stories of unique “Terroirs”.

I’m familiar with the concept of ‘terroir’ as applied to wine – that ‘terroir’ is a way of describing the unique aspects of a place or region (i.e. climate, geography, plant and animal life, etc.) that have an effect on the wine produced from it. Lately, this idea has been extended beyond wine to refer to other agricultural products as coffee, chocolate, tea and now, fragrance.

Using terroir as a concept the Richard Lüscher Britos team came up with five fragrances, each one inspired by a place or region and named for the longitude and latitude co-ordinates of that specific terroir.  Then, they enlisted perfumers Vero Kern, Jean-Claude Richard, Jean-Claude Gigodot and Andy Tauer to create the fragrances.

After trying them all, I am as smitten with the line as my friend, but the first bottle I bought was 44°N 03°E Mystic Violet Hills. The co-ordinates are for the Causse Méjean a limestone plateau in the Lozère area of southern France. The Causse Méjean is a barren, lunar landscape but conditions are perfect for growing wild lavender. Juniper grows there too black pines cover the Eastern part of the plate. Wild sheep feed on the lavender, which is harvested by women. 44°N 03°E Mystic Violet Hills was inspired by  everyday life on the plateau – the lavender, the juniper, the pines, the sheep, the workers breaking for lunch, talking, gossiping, sharing and enjoying marrons glacé – the candied chestnuts so popular in the south of France.

44°N 03°E Mystic Violet Hills opens with a note of fresh, bright lemon followed by lavender - fresh, herbal, fruity and floral – it’s stunning. As it blooms, juniper and pine come forward and join the lavender, their piny/camphorous aspects blending with it but amplifying it too. Labdanum adds depth and a leathery note that adds a little fauna to all the flora. After a while it smells dirty and wild and really, really good. Chestnuts and vanilla at the base sweetened it up just enough.

The drydown is herbal, floral, resinous and slightly sweet. The very first time I wore it I realised I was experiencing something special that would become a new fave.

So, do as I did and follow the advice of someone who has discovered a new fragrance: try 44°N 03°E Mystic Violet Hills!

44°N 03°E Mystic Violet Hills is listed in our Decant Store.  1 ml. decants are $8.00.