Blogger Mr. Drink Wine Today tipped me off about this Casanova perfume by Grenoville. It’s a vintage scent, which I was able to purchase on eBay from a guy who inherited his father’s antique warehouse full of stuff.
So I bought it, and it arrived just hours before I left for the airport to visit Casanovist Marco Leeflang in the Netherlands. The perfume was a gift to him, which he wore to our dinner out. It was a wonderful scent on him.
But I’ll admit here that before I gave it to Marco, I sprinkled a bit on the skirt of a Spanish dancer on a card I mailed to Mr. Drink Wine Today because he was very curious to know its scent. I mailed it from the airport to him in England. It was a faint scent to begin with, perhaps due to its age, perhaps that’s just how it is. But he had some fun writing this description, which I share with you with his permission:
“When a perfume called Casanova would have been made edgier had anyone had the nerve to add, of all things, a dash of straightforward vanilla, then you know it’s missed its design brief.
Most annoyingly, Grenoville’s Casanova – unlike its famous namesake – doesn’t even appear to try very hard to impress in the first place, seeming content to settle for the clean hygienic smell of a gynecologist rather than the in your face / slightly animal musk you hope announced the arrival of the world’s most famous lover.
As Venice’s infamous son exited his carriage after yet another adventurous journey across land and sea, we have no way of knowing how long it took him to warm up but it’s to be hoped that, once he’d engaged his seductive mojo, it dazzled for longer than Grenoville’s offering. Whereas history suggests that none of those arduous journeys over potholed roads dampened Casanova’s gameplan, a single plane journey from the U.S. (courtesy of Ms. Seductive Venice) seemed to knock the scent for six; it arrived all lackadaisical like one of those nervous flyers who self medicates themselves to the eyeballs and arrives looking like a zombie. (If the ladies of Eighteenth Century Europe had walked to the tavern having heard word that the era’s greatest seducer was in town and had been met with this, they’d have justifiably gone home telling anyone that would listen to ‘not believe the hype.’)
Whilst initially faint and imperceptible, it’s worth pointing out that it did – after an afternoon of being scrunched in a pocket and then finally unfolded in the John Ruskin Gallery in Sheffield – momentarily slacken its mask a little in the shadow of images of Venice, lagoons and art. Maskless though its lack of mystery became apparent – offering only the bad chat up line of one of those cheap hotel soaps of yesteryear that were laid out to let the weary traveller freshen up. (But with the caveat of it being a shower indulged in almost out of courtesy rather than any genuine gut feeling that you were going out that night to get lucky with some dazzling courtesan of lust.)
Standing beneath “The Western Fascade of the Basilica of San Marco” by John Wharlton Bunney I willed it hard to let its soapiness transmute into that moment of time before a great kiss when the air seems to turn creamy and fresh but, alas, it never developed and remained more like an unfinished fist bump with someone in a discount Walmart masquerade mask (discovered at stocktake stuffed under the toiletry bargain bin.)
All in all then, disappointing – more a best forgotten Thursday one night stand with someone whose unfortunate O.C.D. requires them to quickly wash themselves beforehands rather than the unforgettable touch of a soulmate in a weekend long orgy of pleasure. No excitement here I’m afraid …..”
The John Bunney painting of St. Marks that Mr. Drink Wine references.
I think the orgy is happening with the colors in Mr. Bunney’s painting, rather than in the nostrils of Mr. Drink Wine Today.
A subsequent search has uncovered that there is another line of Casanova perfumes, for men as well as women, not from Grenoville, but under the name J. Casanova. Watch this space for a future perfume review….
…and be sure to check out the blog Drink Wine Today Because or his haiku blog here on WordPress!