Virgilio (Diptyque)

'Things snowball', they say. Legends, reputations, expectations... and disappointments.

The first citation of Virgilio I saw mentioned only 'basil and herb notes'. That was on Basenotes. Fragrantica expanded on this somewhat terse list, adding caraway, cedar, 'woodsy notes', and vetiver. The more I read, the more herbs joined the recipe -- mint, basil, savory, parsley, rosemary, tarragon, thyme, oregano. Virgilio started to sound like one of those monastery gardens laid out like a patchwork square, with a tiny corner for every conceivable herb. By the time Tania Sanchez playfully threw in a leg of lamb in Perfumes: The A-Z Guide, I was already fretting over my wine pairings and choice of china pattern... and Virgilio had blown up in my mind into a sort of Babette's Feast for the nose.

The reality: a sort of powerfully herbal "fresh scent" cleaning fluid, the sort that usually comes tinted pale blue or green to demonstrate how pure and natural it is. While far from unpleasant, it would be more explicable if I happened to be sponging it on my face with cotton pads in pursuit of tighter pores.

From this aggressively clean beginning, how Virgilio could end up smelling so urinous on skin must be either a cipher, a prank, or an unfortunate miscalculation of what happens when all those aromatic herbs end up stewing in one pot. Of course, this might be the disappointment talking-- but I do believe I've lost my appetite.

It doesn't please me to say this. I've enjoyed the three Diptyques I've tried thus far (Philosykos, L'Ombre Dans L'Eau, and L'Eau de L'Eau). And Virgilio is only the first of a passel of Diptyque samples (L'Eau, Oyedo, Tam Dao, Eau Lente) on the dock waiting to be worn. I pray they're all more satisfying than this.

Surely Virgilio is proof that I shouldn't believe everything I read. Oh, but I wanted to... so, so very much.

Scent Elements: Basil, caraway, cedar, vetiver