I am something of a contrarian when it comes to Serge Lutens. I have owned and worn full bottles of all the consensus scents like Chergui, Ambre Sultan, Fille En Aiguilles, and Cuir Mauresque and not entirely – at the cellular level – truly connected with them, but then gone through bottles of the less popular outliers like Borneo 1834, Nuit De Cellophane, and Louve ( and not to forget its delicious fluffy cousin- preformulation Un Bois Vanille), perfumes that are not as lauded or raved about ( because incense and deep woody notes are thought to have somehow more gravitas and integrity than lighter, more edible confections) but which in my case have afforded me more immediate, and instinctual, satisfactions.
Louve, probably his most infantile perfume, really is a confection- all cherries, almonds, roses, and musk ( and SO damn gorgeous in winter on a red cashmere scarf : you don’t give a damn what is going on out there in the cold, cold world when you are enveloped in its sweet embrace). Verging on sickly, it is nevertheless so committed in its fairytale landscape of wolves in the snow that you practically start to sprout soft white fur.
Dent De Lait is Louve’s blood relative; its cub.
“Now wearying of the tongue’s games, which have for weeks on end been loosening its tooth, a young wolf is anxious to move from milk to blood.
I have loved you for so long I will never forget you“.
begins the prelude, a typical bit of lupine-themed, freehanded nonsense from Lutens, just another capricious idea sealed in scent by his willing and able sidekick Mr Sheldrake, but one I was surprised to find – given all the negative reviews – I liked immediately : all crystalline aldehydes and sudsy almonds; a milky metallic facet and a stroke of Lutensian frankincense: clean, and comforting, but not commercialized, stagnant; or banal.
Dent De Lait is, for me, in fact, a very clean and wearable scent that I am considering buying a full bottle of in Tokyo: an effusive little wolf that I am quite happy to be nipped playfully by. Opalescent. Cold ( but warm inside). Stimulating and awash in glittering transparency, but with something strange and bittersweet at its core.
Bring on the wolf teeth.
And kiss me hard on the mouth.