Finally a good Etat Libre d’Orange under my nose. The opening is beautiful, lively, pleasant and solid: a sugary heart, orange-neroli zesty head notes, quite sweet but not “gourmand”; a rather natural, and slightly boozy kind of tart-sweet (think of Frapin’s Passion Boisée) with resins, honey, also tobacco to me, which overall kind of reminds me of a sort of child nephew of Fumerie Turque; less tobacco, more woody and more sweet – “less cigars and more candies”, shortly. Bright spices (ginger) melt with the citrus-woody accord. Finally, initially I get only a hint of immortelle, which however quickly takes the main stage and becomes the prominent note, with its peculiar earthy-boozy-floral personality, quite rich and “dirty” here – and other immortelle-based scents come to mind. What I really enjoy here is the citrus-floral silky breeze which provides a touch of grace and colour, a thin crystalline breezy-sweet accord which blends well with woods (a restrained, clean, yet slightly “dark” vetiver) to create a “spring”, joyful frame to the earthy smokiness of immortelle. I think the contrast between smoky-earthy, spicy-zesty and floral-sweet notes is perfect here, graceful and restrained enough to smell perfectly solid and utterly pleasant to wear; it kind of quotes and alludes to several other scents, blending them in something new and unique – from mainstream fruity-floral scents (like J’adore, just the first that came to mind) to spicy-citrus/neroli ones (Fendi Theorema) to the quite unrelated realm of earthy-tobacco-immortelle fragrances, from Histoires de Parfums 1740 to Huitième Art Fareb or Lutens’ Fumerie Turque. Not saying it is similar to any of these in particular; rather that like in a “collage” painting, it kind of takes bits and echoes of them, juxtaposing them here to create something new. Like a portrait made with bits of other portraits. On the drydown, though, one of those scents becomes more than an “echo” and comes quite more closer – Fendi Theorema (for women), mostly for the same interplay among citrus-orange notes and spices-woods. Other names and “quotes” aside, is a really well-made scent: it’s bright, pleasant, playful yet shady and smoky, tamed down enough to be safe and versatile, effortlessly elegant and velvety. Nice!