BPAL Milk Chocolate and Green Tea Truffle

Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab’s Milk Chocolate and Matcha Green Tea Ganache Truffle is as much of a mouthful as it is a noseful. It’s a wonderfully rich blend of matcha, sweetness, and chocolate. Smells so good I’m almost tempted to taste it.¬†Truffle Green Tea

In Bottle: Strong cocoa and milky note with the bitter astringency of matcha layered in the background. The cocoa in this tips a bit more toward powder in the bottle and doesn’t smell like a heck of a whole lot of foodiness.

Applied: Where Milk Chocolate and Matcha Green Tea Ganache Truffle shines is upon application. The cocoa note turns into a much better and much more convincing chocolate when you actually put this on. It warms up, smooths out and gains a creamy texture smelling like very convincing chocolate. The matcha is still lending a bit of its bitterness but it has that nice grassy, sweet and dessert-like quality to it too making this seem almost edible on the skin. The bitterness in the matcha is giving this fragrance is a nice kick toward dark chocolate too and this scent will remain fairly linear though you will lose the grassiness as it ages on the skin.

Extra: Milk Chocolate and Matcha Green Tea Ganache Truffle contains a cocoa note in it. Like many of BPAL’s cocoa note contained fragrances, you may experience oil separation. If you notice your fragrance isn’t smelling as nice as it should, or smells a bit off, put the cap on, secure it tightly and roll the bottle or imp (sample vial) on its side between your hands for approximately five minutes to re-blend everything. Remember to roll. Don’t shake. Shaking may cause the oils to break down.

Design: Milk Chocolate and Matcha Green Tea Ganache Truffle is bottled in much the same way as other Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab fragrances. Held in an amber apothecary bottle, Milk Chocolate and Matcha Green Tea Ganache Truffle  sports a limited edition label of a drawn, and quite delicious looking, chocolate.

Fragrance Family: Gourmand

Notes: cocoa, matcha green tea, ganache.

Milk Chocolate and Matcha Green Tea Ganache Truffle was released in 2010 as a part of Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab’s Lupercalia event.

Reviewed in This Post: Milk Chocolate and Matcha Green Tea Ganache Truffle, 2009, 5ml Bottle.


Scent Etiquette

I’ve noticed etiquette is slowly being passed to the wayside in favor of being edgy and straight to the point. When did society get to be like this? Who knows, but let’s not get all bent out of shape when it comes to how we smell. A few tips for scent etiquette follows, for those of us who enjoy perfumes and those of us who do not: Vanilla Flower

1. Don’t smell.

Sometimes you can’t help the way you smell. You just had a jog, your landlord shut off your water a week ago, you’re used to how you smell and don’t realize it. But for the rest of us with running water and sedentary lives, please, don’t smell. Take a shower, observe basic hygiene, and put some deodorant on. If you have an aversion to scents, they make fragrance free deodorants too. As bad as some perfume lovers overdo their scent, I find the smell of unwashed people worse. You can’t smell like a flower all the time, I know. But please, if you are going to be in close vicinity to others in an enclosed space like an office, have the decency to observe basic hygiene.

2. Realize how strong you smell.

This one’s for you fragrance lovers out there. Perfumes are not all created equal. They all have different longevities and projections. Understand that while you love your fragrance, the people working in the cubicles next to yours may not. If you know you’re going to sit in one cramped room full of people all day, wear your heavy-duty fragrances a little lighter than you normally would. There’s no reason for you to stop wearing perfume. But there’s also no reason to be obnoxious and invade other people with your scent.

3. Your nose is not always the best judge of how strong you smell.

Your nose will become desensitized to the same scent over time. This is mostly for people who stick to a signature scent. If you find your old perfume doesn’t smell quite as nice and strong as it used to, you may be desensitized to it and need to take a break or switch it up a little. When your nose isn’t as good at picking up the scent of your favorite perfume anymore, you might find yourself thinking it’s the perfume and not you. Thus you put more on, creating a cloud of perfume strong enough to clear fields. Ask a friend if you’re coming on too strong with your scent. And when you think you might be desensitized, take a couple days off from wearing it or go perfume shopping for a new fragrance.

4. Beware when freshening up.

Like people with a signature scent whose noses get used to their perfume, you can get used to a perfume during the day too. Smell something long enough and eventually you won’t be able to smell it as much anymore. That’s why it’s important to keep this in mind when you freshen up your fragrance so you don’t end up overdoing it.

5. What you like is not universal.

Just because you enjoy smelling like a certain fragrance doesn’t mean everyone does. People like different things and different smells. You are perfectly entitled to what you like but don’t assume everyone else will.


BPAL: Butter Rum Cookie

There’s people who can you hook you up at Sephora with a fragrance that smells a little bit like a cookie. And then there’s Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab who can hook you up with a fragrance that smells exactly like a cookie. And what a specific cookie! Butter Rum Cookie

In Bottle: Butter rum cookie smells exactly like its name. It’s not pulling any stops on you, it’s not pretending its something it isn’t, it’s just boozy, sweet cookies.

Applied: First thing’s first, the butter rum cookie you smell in the bottle will be what you smell on your skin when you put this on. It’s a really nice, very well done blend of sweet, pastry, and rum. I smell the rum first on application but the note is so fleeting that it’s gone on me in a few minutes. The rest of the time is occupied by a lightly toasted, very rich cookie note. There’s a very subtle spiciness to this that lingers in the background but for the most part, you’ll get the full deal in the first few minutes with a drop off on the rum and hours and hours of cookie-smelling fun until it all fades into what I can only describe as a lightly floured pan scent.

Extra: This fragrance was released in 2008 as a part of Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab’s Yule season releases.

Design: Butter Rum Cookie is a limited edition fragrance bottled in the standard amber tinted 5ml glass bottle. It has a special label with its name written on it.

Fragrance Family: Gourmand

Notes: Rum, butter note, cookie note, sugar, almond, orange rind.

Butter Rum Cookie was one of my first stepping stones to BPAL. I had a small decant of it in a 1ml vial and after a series of disappointing scents, I was happy to have discovered this. Remember that I came from a background where perfumes were heady and oriental. It shocked me to smell something that was so literal. While the novelty of it has worn off because I’ve since smelled so many other cookie-based fragrances that smell extremely similar to this, I’ll always have that one moment when I said, “Whoa! This smells exactly like a butter rum cookie!”

Reviewed in This Post: Butter Rum Cookie, 2008, 5ml.


BPAL: Dark Chocolate Keylime Truffle

Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab’s chocolate scents are hit and miss for me. The white chocolates are always misses, as the white chocolate note tends to veer toward milk and heavy cream territory with a faint waft of plastic. Milk chocolate is a rich, sweet, buttery note that can get to be a bit too much. But dark chocolate is the magical medium where sweetness and cocoa mix to form a fantastic balance. Truffle Key Lime

In Bottle: Keylimes! There is a very slight difference between a keylime and a regular lime. Keylimes, to me, are sweeter smelling and have a cleaner, crisper citrus kick to them. In Dark Chocolate Keylime Truffle, the first and only thing I can smell in the bottle are the keylimes and I am okay with that.

Applied: Smelling keylimes always makes me happy. It reminds me of the tropics, most notably, Florida. BPAL did a good job with this note but I’m wondering where the dark chocolate is. A few more minutes in and I finally get faint wafts of cocoa, a hint of sweetness, and a pleasant creamy texture that lends well with Dark Chocolate Keylime Truffle’s gourmand profile. The dark chocolate is a bit fleeting though as it disappears in under an hour and takes the keylime with it leaving me smelling a bit like sweetened milk.

Extra: Dark Chocolate Keylime Truffle was a part of the 2010 chocolate collection from BPAL. The other chocolates in this collection include, Milk Chocolate and Matcha Green Tea Ganache Truffle, White Chocolate Black Raspberry and Apricot Cordial Truffle, Dark Chocolate Whiskey and Cognac Truffle, and Milk Chocolate Coconut Cardamom Rum and Ginger Truffle.

Design: Dark Chocolate Keylime Truffle is contained in a 5ml amber glass bottle with a plastic top. It has a limited edition label with the house name and fragrance name on it.

Fragrance Family: Gourmand

Notes: Cocoa, keylime, sugar, cream.

Reviewed in This Post: Dark Chocolate Keylime Truffle 2010, 5ml.