Too warm for a flurry, but too white to be a blue flower – Eau de Gentiane Blanche is redolent of pepper and paper, white tea and white musk with iris as the centre piece. I don’t perceive it as being overly clean nor musky. It’s very much an iris and pepper scent, with accents of freshly sliced pepper and dusty floral notes (Grasse being the closest I’ve ever been to the Alps - I’ve never smelled Gentiane before so I’m at loss comparing to the real flower).
It feels like a conference call between Paprika Brasil and Osmanthe Yunnan, Olivia Giacobettis Hiris and Jacques Cavallier’s Eau Parfumée au Thé Blanc (I believe it was co-created with Jean-Claude Elena?).
Of all the three new eaux from Hermes, this one intrigued me the most initially, which is why I’ve worn it a few days. But I don’t find it as disturbingly solanic as the green bell pepper of Paprika Brasil, nor as fleeting as Osmanthe Yunnan. Despite its relative simplicity, it seems like 5 perfumes in one, and while a few were on my maybe-list for a while (Hiris, Osmanthe Yunnan and Eau The Blanc) – Eau de Gentiane Blanche might just be the one. I’m yet to try the other two (Eau d’Orange Vert being a re-release of the classic one from way back – and I hope it wasn’t reformulated but I doubt that’s the case).