"... Thick tufts of beach oats stood everywhere to the side, but around them immortelle and a few blood-red carnations. Innstetten bent down and stuck a carnation in his buttonhole. "The Immortelle after!" ..."
If I hear Immortellen, I immediately think of this place from Theodor Fontane's social novel Effi Briest.
The young Effi has to marry (instead of her mother Luise) her childhood love Geert von Innstetten and is taken to the Pomeranian wasteland. There she lives in an inhospitable haunted house with her unloved husband, residents who are always strangers to her, and a "preserved young crocodile" hanging from the ceiling in the hallway. (I still couldn't find out if "the Chinese" is really haunted.)
What has to happen happens: she falls in love with the "first best" that comes her way: the handsome and unlike her husband not at all boring Major of Crampas.
After the usual "trials and tribulations" it finally comes to a duel. Crampas is shot by Innstetten, the marriage is divorced and Effi, young and stupid as she still is, has to return to her parental home "in disgrace".
There she more or less dawns towards her end and leaves her mother in quite a "soul's torment".
For quiet hours, Fontane's novel is a pretty pleasant entertainment.
The immortelle, also called straw flowers, which grow between the beach oats, really have a curry-like scent.
I have a very large, silver-leaved plant on the balcony: during the flowering season with numerous yellow cone cushions it cannot deny the name "curry flower".
Years ago I only brought a finger-length head shoot from our Botanical Garden; who would have thought of such an expansive plant back then?
If it were possible, I would say: the entire Immortelle smells slightly dusty - the illusion of a sparsely overgrown stretch of beach in front of the grey monotonous sea cannot be dismissed.
Annick Goutal's "Sables" starts for me with this dry fragrance that contains a slight hint of curry. Here the Immortelle is caught very well.
This light felt dustiness is pleasantly invigorated by the warm cinnamon scent; but it takes the warmth and pulsating power of vanilla to bring a little "fire" into this scent work of art.
Only now does "Sables" leave the native macchia mentioned above and become more cultivated, a little more elegant: the fragrance begins to become "city-fine".
The sandalwood gift is very important here to bring the first golden ray into this fragrance mixture: it begins to breathe and live in a quiet, quiet way.
So this pretty fancy creation is finally ready to get the finishing touches by Amber.
"Sables" reminds me of a well-cut men's suit in light or dark grey, which has to be enlivened by an interestingly patterned tie in order not to look too serious.
For me this is a fragrance that needs time and a certain amount of trust to get to know it, maybe even to conquer it.
A "love at first sight/"spray" seems a bit unlikely to me.
The durability for a Annick Goutal fragrance is tremendously long; after hours "Sables" is still present; but then the Immortelle dominates again - not unpleasant, but a little bit needs getting used to.
"Sables" seems to be a classic for the "serious" gentleman; how far he is suitable for the "active life" or even for women I cannot judge.
Here I hold it with the old Briest and his final movement at Fontane: "... it is too wide a field."
Thank you Meggi for leaving the bottling to us; this test was definitely worth it!
A supplement for all film friends:
In 1939 Gustaf Gründgens filmed this subject with his wife Marianne Hoppe in the leading role; the movie was called "Der Schritt vom Wege".
Mrs. Hoppe had a little dog at the time of this marriage who listened to the name "Effi Briest".
Known as a constant barker, Gustaf called him "Kläffi Biest"!