O’Driù is a niche, artisanal Italian perfume line. I can barely keep up with American indies, so I haven’t went out of my way find “new” International brands. It’s not that I don’t care, I do, it’s just really difficult to keep up. O’Driu has received a lot of buzz due to the perfumer and the line’s eccentricities and art installations (see Peety). This is one of the few International indies that is on my radar.
The inspiration of Leva is rather “tame” in comparison. It’s based on Eve (Genesis Eve), a muse for so many artists.
Leva open as an effervescent, spicy ginger beer – dried citrus, lemongrass, peppercorns, ginger. It then fizzles down to a resinous, slightly balsamic lemongrass. Leva dries down to a boozy tonka-vanilla with a dusty benzoin resin. This vanilla base is less foody and more balsamic, almost tobacco-like.
Being one of my first experiences with the line, I was surprised by its “tameness”. I’m not calling it boring. I’m surprised by its wearability. It’s something you could wear in any environment or on any occasion. I was expecting something much more “difficult”. As far as a ginger beer fragrance goes, this one is completely approachable. As far as an Eve inspired fragrance, I expected something completely different as well. There’s no fruitiness…and I’m not complaining about that (notes like fruit would be too obvious!)
Notes listed include grapefruit, turmeric, lemongrass, jasmine, tagetes, vetiver, benzoin, tonka bean, vanilla, jatamansi, basil, lavender, ylang ylang and pepper. Launched 2012. PERFUMER – Angelo Orazio Pregoni
Give Leva a try if you like spicy gourmands. Or perfumes like Bois 1920 Sushi Imperiale, Hermes Hermessence Ambre Narguile, DSH Perfumes Gingembre and/or Serge Lutens 5 O’Clock Gingembre. Leva is unisex.
Projection and longevity are below average.It wears rather close to the skin.
The 1.7 oz bottle of Leva retails for 180 € at O’Driu. Only 200 bottles have been made.
Victoria’s Final EauPINION – Gourmand, spicy ginger beer with a sweet, balsamic base. Now I like spicy gourmands but I rarely ever wear them. I always *think* I like them more than I actually do. Saying that, Leva is something I’d never wear but that doesn’t speak to the quality of the fragrance. It’s just me saying “would I ever drop $250+ for a lemongrass-ginger fragrance? Nope”.
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