“I remember the stalks tangled in his hair, but I remember the colour as well: it was blond. His essence was that of a dry eau, for those who don’t like to get wet.”
Serge Lutens is an icon in the perfume biz, the enigmatic creator of an olfactory oeuvre that purists complain has been somewhat watered down since the company’s sale to Shiseido.
L’Eau de Paille (“straw water” in French) is the latest dilute, and perhaps in Luten’s fantasy, the dry stalks of straw bristle and scratch against the skin. Instead, the contradictory idea is trickled down through the haze of a dream, and the curiously dry, aquatic scent strolls along, nonchalant, somehow staying crisp though fresh, smoldering with incense that burns and smokes without a flame.
It’s not a roll in the hay but the idea of it, a crackling fantasy of summer’s dry heat imagined while outside, the rain pours down and down the window pane…