Delicious Night by Donna Karan is said to aim to capture the atmosphere of New York City at night. As is made clear by the website supporting the launch of the perfume, uncoverthecity.com, the scent targets bachelorettes in particular who are believed to be its ideal fragrance consumers and thought to be always potentially interested in a sexy perfume to wear on a night out with a band of girl-friends. Looking sideways at a potential mate is of course not forbidden and even encouraged if you read the perfume clearly.
Part of the perfume is sheer fun with notes of "frozen pomelo" and "chilled Blackberry Martini" and part of it is nocturnal, sexy, evocative of nude musky skin after a few hours spent touring bars, restaurants and nightclubs. The one thing missing is the scent of cold cigarettes, but we are no more in the era of flappers and very much in the one studded with smoke-free zones one day to become perfume-free zones if collective allergies become wildly rampant. Bloomingdale's is actually feeling free enough for now to spray the scent in the air for passers-by in the street to smell it, at 59th Street and Lexington Avenue.
The perfume is rather "pluralist" with fruity, floral, musky, "woodsy" nuances (patchouli, vetiver; see our post on vetiver in feminine perfumes recently) and an ambery body. It is classified as a floriental by DKNY.
Delicious Night successfully conveys the illusion of a crepuscular purple-smelling scent with its notes of blackberry, night-blooming orchids, very discreetly powdery iris, and the deeper base notes. It is a standard - one is tempted to say - efficacious functional perfume without it being boring or trite. It is well balanced while being on the pungent side as its goal seems to be to become one with your skin and enhance it. Its strongest quality resides in the fact that this would make a great flirty scent to be worn on a date.
The association of blackberry and musk was famously, for those who are interested in these sorts of things, inaugurated by Mûre et Musc by L'Artisan Parfumeur in 1978. Delicious Night is therefore a twist on this original idea which might have been encouraged by a distant precursor like Chamade by Guerlain.
The blackberry and musk marry well in their pungency. Here the pomelo and what smells like some coriander, maybe cedarwood and cumin add their high-pitched notes to create a sexy but not sexual musky accord. The woman who wears this is fully dressed but shows some bare skin.The musk in Delicious Night is quite marked, sweaty (4 hours of discreet perspiration) rather than frankly dirty (unwashed), akin to the type of stylized musky perspiring impression one finds in Alexander McQueen Kingdom.
On the right person endowed with the right attitude this could become a sexy little bomb. Although the marketing wants to broadly reach the group of women aged 18 to 35, the nocturnal quality of the scent and its slightly deeper ambery and floral velvety texture makes it a good fit for women in the higher digits of this group.
One would have liked the perfume to be more enduring. After the relative intensity of the scent and the satisfying sensation of leaving a noticeable musky trail, the perfume instead of deepening further becomes less rich in the dry-down and even a bit flat suddenly like a Champagne without much fizz left in it. The contrast is marked enough as to feel like a stale let-down rather than a harmonious transition. Some body cream in the same line will probably be needed to make the scent last longer at full throttle.
You can find complementary information about the scent in our previous post, including the complete list of notes and ancillary products.
You can buy the Eau de Parfum at Bloomingdale's where it is currently exclusively available between $52 and $68.
If you are interested in sampling the scent, please leave a comment below and the winner of the draw will be announced on Friday Oct 19 2007. You will receive a carded sample.