There is something alien about gardenias : the pallid translucence, the sensual coldness of their ardor. I love these flowers , they are in full bloom now ( these photos were taken just round the corner from our house ), but I know that I will never quite fully GRASP them.
I don’t think any perfumer truly has either. The closest I have come to smelling a photorealistic , bottled gardenia was in a Hawaiian soliflore – just gardenia, very lifelike – Gardenia by Royal Lei.
Miller Harris’ Secret Gardenia is a pleasant new variant on the theme, though it smells less natural – more ‘produced’. If tuberose is Diptyque’s ozonically wood-fresh, Hanoi raining courtyard-inspired Do Son, this is the London gardenia equivalent, married with the restrained Englishness of an unthreatening and easy to wear floral such as Floris’ Nightblooming Jasmine. Pear and ylang ylang grace the cool if full bodied demureness of gardenia : the whole generally quite pleasing, clean : coyly suggestive