Kathleen Baird-murray sam­ples fresh, warm-weather scents that trans­port her from the seashores of the Ital­ian coast to the desert heat of the Mid­dle East

Town & Country (UK) - - CONTENTS — SUMMER 2018 -

Kathleen Baird-murray sam­ples sum­mer fra­grances from far-flung shores

Afunny thing hap­pened the other day. I was in a café with a friend who was feel­ing down and un­bur­den­ing his prob­lems one by one. It was an Ital­ian café, the kind that flies in fresh bur­rata daily, dishes out those lit­tle hard-baked bis­cuits free with your espresso and plays the theme tunes from The God­fa­ther, Cinema Par­adiso and Il Postino on a loop. Just as I was grasp­ing for suit­able words of com­fort to of­fer, the mu­sic welled up, as if in ex­ag­ger­ated sym­pa­thy with my friend’s dolour. Laugh­ter re­placed sad­ness – un­stop­pable gig­gles that ric­o­cheted through our bod­ies – and all was well with the world again. You have to hand it to the Ital­ians – they know how to set a scene, to give us what we want on a phys­i­o­log­i­cal and psy­cho­log­i­cal level. And when it comes to sum­mer fra­grances, for me, it’s to the Ital­ians that I re­peat­edly turn. It’s that long tres­tle ta­ble in the or­chard, the grandma-in-black in the shade of the over­hang­ing fig-tree, the bam­bino at the breast, the Dolce & Gab­bana-clad ma­tri­arch that I vi­su­alise as I spritz on a fresh citrus cologne, some­thing zingy that el­e­vates and trans­ports me back to the next plate of wa­ter­melon; a dive off the rocks into the Io­nian Sea; a spin on the back of a Lam­bretta. (And by the way, Dolce & Gab­bana has an ex­cel­lent new lemon-in­spired fra­grance called Ital­ian Zest that ticks all those boxes.) But oc­ca­sion­ally, it’s good to push the nose to seek out other for­eign climes, dif­fer­ent scenes. Or­anges are not the only fruit. And lunch at a long tres­tle ta­ble is not the only meal (be­sides which, in our fam­ily at least, there is of­ten an ar­gu­ment and some­one storm­ing off ). For any­one brave enough to step out of their ol­fac­tory com­fort zone, there are rich pickings to be had; as long as you pluck from the branch that’s just out of your nor­mal reach.


mai­son fran­cis kurkd­jian oud silk mood, £195 for 70ml

goutal paris bois d’hadrien, £132 for 100ml

per­fumer h an­gel­ica, £350 for 100ml

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