Juliette Has A Gun was a perfume line I feel in love with after reading Sophie Dahl’s description of one of their scents in her column for Vogue about ten years ago. She talked about ‘Lady Vengeance’ as being akin to (paraphrasing here) smelling like a cashmere cardigan after the naughtiest girl in school had borrowed it for the day.
The founder is Romano Ricci, Nina Ricci’s great-grandson (she of the famous L’Air du Temps) a suave Parisian who is fond of sporting a trilby hat and matching trench coat and is a lot of fun to interview (with some ‘industry’ people it can be like pulling teeth, especially when there’s a language barrier). He’s certainly a character and a living embodiment of the brand, irreverent, charming and ‘oh-so-French’.
His latest scent ‘Moscow Mule’ is no exception. Perfume inspired by cocktails tend to be a bit schlocky, but this one manages to get the balance right. Nothing is overly fruity or sugary sweet, but in every other respect it resembles what a decent tipple should be: refreshing and pleasant enough with enough kick to leave you wanting more.
Like its namesake aperitif, ‘Moscow Mule’ opens with a sharp bite of ginger and lime, with enveloping wisps of sandalwood and amber, made all the sexier thanks to a good glug of famous ingredient Iso E Super (it apparently ‘melds’ with the wearer’s pheromones to make them more desirable to others). A musky dry down of ambroxan (the synthetic counterpart to highly-prized ambergris) completes the bouquet. It’s not too heavy or cloying that you can’t wear it to the office in the height of summer, nor too subtle that it doesn’t hold its own when worn with a glittery evening gown. Ideal for those who aren’t too fond of overtly ‘girly, floral’ perfumes or pedestrian colognes, I’m sure Sophie’s wayward schoolfriend would approve.
Available at Selfridges from £85