I am always looking around for a good bargain and just the other day I found a good offer for the very last bottle of a fragrance and label I had never heard of: Goti. The fragrance was on sale in a downtown Athens clothing store that also which features exclusive brands and a medium sized collection of fragrances like Nez à Nez, some Comme des Garcons, Patika, Acca Kappa, Penhaligon’s, Geo F. Trumper and left overs from their previously carried lines like Miller Harris and the elusive Goti.
Riccardo Goti is a modern jewellery designer for which I haven’t been able to find much on the internet, and much less for his three perfume releases, Black, White and Earth. There was one blog post from 2008 and some listings from exclusive shops. It appears Goti commissioned none other than Unknown Perfumers of Santa Maria Novella to create three perfumes that would interact with the wearer’s skin to the maximum to produce a highly personal sillage of essence and skin chemistry. The packaging of black is minimal and enigmatic. A simple rectangular bottle, no logo, no title, in a black pouch, nested inside a black leather box sealed with a leather mini belt and a hand written tag with “black”" on it. Although it is very minimal it supports claims I read that it is “the most posh perfume”, perhaps not to the full but with a grain of salt.
The scent itself is actually very intriguing. It has the Santa Maria Novella old world vibe. It starts with a very fresh top of bergamot and mint mostly. The mint is very cooling but doesn’t stand off as minty. Lavender notes add a gentle blue hue to the opening accord. And hear comes the intriguing part: the top notes last long, a good half hour. All you get is a fresh, natural cologne. And then some amber kicks in and the composition takes a whole new turn. It starts sweetening up with vanilla and the warm glow of opoponax. It is really impressive how the sweet notes remain hidden somewhere for a good half hour without any trace of them being obvious and suddenly take over completely making this a chameleon of compositions.
So this not only was this a good buy (I got it at 60% discount) but it also helped me pin down what opoponax is in a fragrance. It is a sweet herbal note that bares some resemblance to immortelle. It is not as heavily spiced but it gives you the same feeling of walking in the country and rubbing a twig between your fingers to see what it smells like. It is resinous and sweet at the same time and adds a ray of sunshine to fragrances.
I would not characterize Goti Black Essence a “black” fragrance. The Santa Maria Novella stamp is all over it and this means that it is radiant, a bit cologne-y at start and with a velvety base. This is the SMN style. And the use of top quality natural ingredients. But it is a satisfying scent, especially if one loves opoponax as I do. And very long lasting!
Notes from here: bergamot, mint, jasmin, black pepper, lavander, musc, vanilla, patchouly, opoponax and amber.
Notes from my nose: bergamot, mint chewing gum, spice rack, vanilla, opoponax