Jeroboam Floro, created by VaninaMuracciole in 2021, fragrance review first published in Cafleurebon
“Strong essences are kept in small bottles” whispers the little black bottle, perfectly fitting in the palm of my hand. If you are a wine aficionado, the name Jeroboam must have stolen a smile from your face, the first time you encountered the elegant petite noir bottles on a perfumery shelf. In the wine world, champagne bottle sizes are named after biblical kings, “Jeroboam” being the correspondent of the great 3-liter bottle (with Methuselah, Balthazar, Nebuchadnezzar, Solomon, or Melchizedek standing for even larger containers). All the perfumes in Jeroboam’s portfolio are sold in extrait concentration and are all created by Vanina Muracciole around the theme of musk.
Musk is the red thread that unites and stands at the base (pun intended) of the great majority of our modern perfumery. It’s then so fitting that all the perfumes of the brand are given Esperanto names, a fabricated language that was invented at the end of the 19th century with the intent of creating a universal medium of communication.
Created by a Polish doctor named Zamenhof, (having “Doktoro Esperanto” as his pen-name) with the hope that it will bring world peace, Esperanto was an experiment that was created as a fresh start: a language stripped of all its political and historical baggage, easy to learn, easy to pronounce and with clear and hyper-simplified grammar.
Of course, Floro needs no translation from Esperanto, its Latin root blooming in similar ways all across our familiar Babel: flour, flur, flor, floer, floyer, flower, fleur,florem, etc.
The famous Ostara scene from Neil Gaiman’s tv series adaptation of American Gods started playing in my mind the first time I sprayed Floro. A goddess unapologetically taking her offerings with her appetite raising, as the more she receives, the more she demands. A crescendo of petals, turning from a flurry to a full-blown pastel tornado, mixing in flowers, wet green stems and gathering them into a cloud of pollen-filled vegetal sweetness to be wrung, twisted, condensed, and sublimated into a potion ready to quench an old god’s craving. We are teased with red apple slices with honeyed undertones, tart green apples, all rolling alongside a stream of juicy ripe pineapple, filled with all the yellowed sweetness of a tropical sun. Still, the “cinematography” of the fragrance feels classical and elegant, there are no cut-scenes, no rapid transitions, no overly sweet or scheetchy edges, just long focused “camera” movements, seamlessly sliding from the juicy floral setting to a creamy and milky sandalwood realm.
The fragrance somehow seems constructed circularly, as if Vanina Muraciole weaved a soft cocoon around you, placing layers of creamy sandalwood and textured cedar around the floral heart, without ever weighing the fragrance down. I had this image of a photoshop workspace, where the mouse rapidly switches from layer to layer and expertly adjusts all the levels, curves, and exposure of the flowers – so that they are showcased on the woody background, for that picture-perfect contrast. The white musk acts like a blur tool, smoothing, smudging, and blending the edges of a timeless image – that of a universal flower: perfected, enhanced, that floats just above your skin, like the most delicate yet sturdy shield.
Jeroboam Floro, photo by Nicoleta 3
PS: The dry down is the part that got me smitten, as I found it to be the olfactive translation of petting the soft and shiny fur of a kitten. Relaxing, soothing, round, almost tactile, whispered and cozy, this white musk is purring softly on your skin for hours: “Warm kitty, soft kitty, little ball of fur/ Happy kitty, sleepy kitty, purr! purr! purr!”
*Also see the review for Boha
Notes: Apple, Pineapple, Flower notes, Jasmine, Sandalwood, Cedarwood, Wood, Musk