It's taken me a while to get around to trying a few fragrances from Biehl Parfumkustwerke; not from a lack of interest, but just because they're not widely distributed and because, well, they don't have actual titles that capture my imagination and stick in my memory. I realize that Biehl's naming-numbering system is very deliberate — as the company website proclaims, "even the names of the individual works are not puffed up by a seemingly sensual play of words but simply bear the initials of their artist and a consecutive work number." All the same, I can't help feeling like it's homework for me to remember which is which.
In any case, random grumbles aside, I've recently tried PC01, which is perfumer Patricia Choux's first contribution to the collection. It's described by the phrases "sun, finally. a breath of wind. the soul smiles" (all lower-case) and its composition includes top notes of tangerine, neroli, davana, and mango leaves; a heart of peony, iris and mango; and a base of kaschmir [sic] wood, vetiver and musk. I thought this fragrance would be a good follow-up to my recent review of Rosie Jane Tilly, which was another fruity-floral with a summery theme (and a silly name, but that's beside the point).
Even more specifically than summer, PC01 feels like a vacation to warmer climate, especially the moment when you first step out of the airport and you're hit with heat and light. It's a bold and sophisticated mélange of tropical fruit, with a generous accompaniment of green notes and a few quieter florals in the background. It strikes a nice balance between sweet and tart: the tangerine note smells properly juicy, and the mango is just slightly under-ripe. I've read that Choux has worked for Jo Malone and was one of the noses behind Marc Jacobs's Orange Splash cologne; if that's all accurate, it makes sense, because PC01 is not an abstract fragrance — like the Jo Malone line, it smells like "real," specific things. On the other hand, it's more vivid (and longer-lasting) than most of the Jo Malone fragrances or the citrusy Marc Jacobs Orange. Its peony is a soft counterpoint to the lively fruits, but PC01 does stay brightly colored for most of its evolution on the skin. The dry down brings out some of the sheer musk and woods.
PC01 isn't something that I'd buy as a full bottle, simply because it's not really "me," but if you love summery fruit fragrances made from good quality ingredients, you should by all means give PC01 a try. It could easily be worn by men as well as women.
Biehl Parfumkunstwerke PC01 is available as 100 ml Eau de Parfum ($195). For purchasing information, see the listing for Biehl Parfumkunstwerke under Perfume Houses.