A tale of two samples.

Five years have passed in a blink of an eye since I first sampled Histoires de Parfums' 1969 Revolte. I remember feeling instant adoration for this delicious candied peach slice of a perfume-- a reaction reinforced by many wearings. At that time, 1969 Revolte demonstrated every quality I thought a gourmand fragrance should possess; I predicted it might even supplant Mitsouko as my Peach Fragrance Supreme. It was only natural that I'd walk into Sniffapalooza Fall Ball 2012 scheming to hit up Bergdorf's HdP kiosk for a full bottle.

Instead, I became transfixed en route by A Dozen Roses, a niche line driven more by visuals than by olfactory aesthetics. (In other words, they offer drop-dead gorgeous bottles filled with merely so-so jus.) Lured by the siren songs of art and luxury, flush with the thrill of the moment, Glynis, JC and I found ourselves eagerly divvying up the contents of a Dozen Roses coffret. (Wasn't the whole point to treat ourselves?)

Thus it was that I staked my claim on Gold Rush, a chocolate-and-blackberry confection rescued from stodginess by an airy, carefree hint of neroli. And that coveted full bottle of 1969 Revolte? Jilted. Spurned. Forgotten in the heat of runaway passion.

What came over me, you ask? The right instinct, it would appear. Today, I am more enamored of Gold Rush than I ever believed possible for a pure impulse buy. Its ganache-dipped wine-dark blackberry note gets me right where I live, while 1969 Revolte's plaintive peach -- once loved with all my soul -- now leaves me unmoved. I have no idea how this happened. Nothing has changed about either perfume, and yet... it must I who have changed. Over the course of five years, I've moved inexorably away from light, ambery nothings to embrace the dark and deep. (Which begs the continued question: why the hell didn't I visit HdP that day for a full bottle of 1740 Marquis de Sade? Ah, mystery eternal...)

So who's the real winner in all this? Mitsouko, of course. With the patience and self-possession of the centenarian it soon shall be, it waited on the sidelines until my infatuation with 1969 Revolte ran its course-- then calmly re-crowned itself Queen. This time, I swear my fealty is eternal. Vivat Regina! Persica quondam, persica futurus!