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Onder de Linde – Under the Linden: magical, joyous, uplifting.

Every year in late spring, early summer, Mother Nature performs one of her magic acts: the linden trees bloom. Their delicate, bell-shaped, cream-coloured blossoms hang on filament stems, sheltered by the dense foliage, and their scent wafts on the breeze, fresh and honeyed, a sweetness layered with green leafy notes. It is a divine scent.

Called lime blossom, tilleul, or basswood in other parts of the world, linden trees are tall and stately and leafy, renowned in poetry and song for their perfumed shade. Linden blossoms have been used for centuries to scent soaps and creams, in herbal teas, as tinctures and in aromatherapy, because the scent has powerful restorative properties. 

Bees know this. Bees love linden blossoms - they are bee food. 

And I love linden blossoms. They’re even better than May lilacs in my smell book. The scent is so unique - green, fresh, sweet, grassy, all in one sniff! I’ve tried for ages to find the perfect linden perfume that captures the magic of the linden note for me, with some success. Tilleul by D’Orsay has been my best find until a few weeks ago, when I discovered Onder de Linde from Baruti Perfume, an independent artisanal perfume company based in Amsterdam, Netherlands

Onder de Linde is a hand-made extrait de parfum which opens with the delicious green of a fresh-cut bouquet of linden flowers, spiked with a splash of fragrant lilac and slices of crisp apple. This accord is so unique, it’s transfixing. Suddenly it’s a beautiful summer day with not a cloud in the blue, blue sky!  Green, fresh, a little spicy, a little earthy, a hint of fruit under the soft florals, the accord persists into the heart, when the bees arrive and the linden blossoms become more honeyed with a musty nuance of golden beeswax. 

The heart is where perfumer Spyros Drosopoulos lifts his linden fragrance out of the soliflore category, and elevates it to a truly interesting and more complex perfume. The vegetal earthiness of orris root keeps the floral sweetness subdued and soft, light as a feather, but at the same time notes of musk and vanilla are introduced which create a warm undercurrent as the heart moves to settle in the base. 

The base dries down with an accord of satiny smooth sandalwood and green vetiver, which is a perfect balance to the floral sweetness, and extends the natural airy honeyed quality of the linden heart with what I detect as mown grass and hay. The musk is quietly insistent, adding more animalic depth. Never too green or too sweet or too powdery, Onder de Linde feels like the perfect summer day, bees buzzing, birds chirping, mowers mowing. With a soft waft and good durability, the scent is one that anyone can wear and enjoy all day.

In Onder de Linde, perfumer Spyros Drosopoulos has found a way to include a sensation of velvety warmth, an animalic quality, which is the sensual element that I’ve always found missing in other interpretations of the linden note. His fragrance avoids the noticeable soapiness or heavy sweetness that is found in other linden fragrances, and instead creates the feeling of the pure beauty of the stately elegant tree in all its natural surroundings. 

He says: “Onder de Linde is a magic potion - here to chase your blues away. Joyous and uplifting, this fragrance is full of promises of early summer.” 

I think he’s exactly right, and I second that emotion….

Onder de Linde Extrait de Parfum is listed in our Decant Store. Decants are $8.00 for 1 ml.

Image - Onder de Linde 30 ml. bottle - perfumeniche.com