I – ABSOLUTELY – LOVE – THIS – SMELL. Can’t get enough of it – which is strange considering that it’s not even that great of a composition. Compared to the original, L’eau D’issey Sport (LDS) is spicier, more masculine and far heavier on the bergamot. But there’s just something about it – perhaps the combination of vetiver and spices mixed with a synthetic aquatic accord – that’s so familiar, maybe even a little nostalgic... ADDiCTiVE is how I’d describe it.
Right from the word go, I get a rather aggressive spicy grapefruit and vetiver. Considering my signature has been Bvlgari’s Man Extreme for quite some time (plus I adore Terre de Hermes), I’d recognize it anywhere. But here’s where the turn happens – in comes the spice. The combination of green vetiver and nutmeg with whatever leather accord Mr. Cavallier used (because there’s absolutely no detectable leather in this) gives the composition a slight MINTY feel; and although it’s not officially listed in the notes, it’s there, trust me. Perhaps it’s this undertone of cooling mint that prompted the “sport” designation? I dunno.
But to me, the balance of notes give the overall impression of a spiced-and-iced green tea. It sounds weird, I know, but that’s the best description I can give; and as far as sport fragrances go, I personally think it’s a stroke of genius. Combine that with some sort of synthetic aquatic accord (an ambroxan derivative maybe?) and you’ve got it.
As a side note, the perfumer Jacques Cavallier also composed several fragrances for Bvlgari including the original Aqva, Aqva Marine, Amara, Atlantique, Pour Homme AND Extreme, so you can see the direction we’re heading – aquatic, salty, spicy, tea-ish... It’s also no surprise that LDS contains little hints here and there of ingredients used in all of those compositions. And being a rather exuberant fan of Bvlgari myself… me like.
On the performance side, LDS may be the quintessential embodiment of the 200m dash. When you first spray it on, it starts off pretty humble, but gains strength quickly. 15 minutes in, you’re running. 30 and you’re in a full-on sprint. We’re talking BEAST MODE projection for nearly 90 minutes, unabashedly spurred on by the strong spices and synthetic base. Never before have I encountered a sport fragrance that not only smells like a new pair of sneakers once in a while, but that projects so massively for so long. Woweeeee.
But in a stunning turn of events, the projection suddenly burns itself out within 2 hours (but WHAT a 2 hours! Yeeesh). The aquatic feel dials wayyy back, leaving a dry and rather synthetic spicy vetiver behind. Total longevity on me has to be around 5-6 hours; but let’s face it, this is a scent for sprinters. And can we talk a little about that bottle? FAN-effing-TASTIC. Everything from the colours, to the sleek profile, to the rubbery feel of the cap, they absolutely nailed it with this one. Probably in my top 3 bottles ever made. But that’s coming from a lifetime athlete so…
In summary, all I can say is that this one is a winner for me. It literally has it all – the freshness, the spiciness, the familiarity, the bottle design and heck, even the performance out of the gate. But would I recommend it as a blind buy? Nuh-uh. NO. Unfortunately, the original L’eau D’issey is no indication of the scent, so if you want to get a better idea of the feel, have a sniff of some of the Bvlgari line mentioned above and see if they work for you. If they’re a YES, then this one should be right up your alley… or should I say, racetrack?
Scent – 8.5/10
Longevity – 5.5/10
Projection – 7.5/10 (Beast mode for the first 1.5 hours)
Overall – 8/10