There’s something a bit “Kings Landing from Game of Thrones” about this scent. It has action, adventure and derring-do all in one little bottle.
Lemon, bergamot, marine/iodine accord, tuberose, patchouli, olibanum, frankincense, hyraceum, rum, sandalwood, styrax, amber woods.
Mendittorosa are an esoteric yet high-quality Italian brand who make scents under two broad lines: the Mendittorosa scents and the Talismans line. The Talismans collection – of which Sogno Reale is a part – are scents designed to give the impression that the wearer is being protected and brought good luck. Every scent within this range is complex, multifaceted and nuanced. These are all scents which tell stories and take the wearer on a journey as they unfold.
The good news is that Sogno Reale stands up to its excellent counterparts in terms of complexity and intrigue. If you are interested in smelling fascinating and a bit mysterious then read the notes to Sogno Reale and then forget them. This scent cannot be understood as a list of notes alone, it’s way too evocative for that.
An initial spritz begins by giving both lemon and bergamot which, admittedly, don’t sound that unusual by themselves. The interest in Sogno Reale is almost what is going on around those central notes – the swirl of olfactive colours and textures which paint a canvas of scent and become far greater than the sum of its individual notes.
The top of Sogno Reale smells a little like a Mediterranean beach, 500 years ago. There’s the warmth, the lemon groves away on the cliff, scrubby bushes where the cliffs meet the beach and the salt-smell of the sea. There’s a traveller stood on the beach. He has wandered a long time to arrive just at that moment. His tattered cloak flaps around his legs as he stares out at the horizon. This is the picture that Sogno Reale evoked for us; enigmatic, exciting, old – almost ancient – like it’s referencing something only the lizard part of your brain remembers.
In the heart of the scent we are with the traveller again. He has journeyed inland to a city with a bustling market place. In a secluded, shady corner he slips inside the store of a merchant. The counter is piled high with different spices of all different textures and colours. The scent of them pervades the air making it heavy and warm. In these closer quarters the almost animalic scent of the traveller himself is discernible. He smells dangerous, unfamiliar but inviting too. There’s a woodiness from the warm timbers of the shop, but coupled with the spices piled all around this doesn’t feel like the sort of wood you smell often. It’s old, seasoned, instead of fresh-cut and green.
Of course, if this is all a bit fanciful for you you can see it in terms instead of the scent being spicy, exotic, close, salty, woody, resinous, dry and warm; it smells like a sandy golden colour, brown, sunlight and sea-spray. But it seems much less fun when put like that.
There’s an energetic electricity about the base of Sogno Reale. If we equate it to our traveller again he has confronted the merchant in the dark and shady store. No weapons have yet been drawn but the travellers eyes have started to glow with an electric blue, and sparks leap from his finger tips. The air fizzes and crackles as the energy intensifies. The piles of resin and spice tremble, a flagon of rum falls over and the liquor begins to soak into the wood. Expectation lies heavy. The merchant begins to sweat and his powdered hair begins to emit a floral odour. We wait to see who will blink first. We already know the answer.
In the base, Sogno Reale is electric, ozonic almost, and at times we got something akin to a metallic flavour from it. The spices and resins and woods are still present, but they are overlaid with this exciting electricity. The rum note creeps in and sweetens the overall flavour of the scent. There’s also a faint tuberose note to add to the sweetness and soften the more mineral notes out.
The other stuff
The longevity of this scent is amazing. One time one of our testers reported that it was still noticeable a full 13 hours after application and that included following a very warm gym class.
The sillage of the scent is also good. The beautiful thing about it is that it is noticeable but not offensive. It has a fairly soft sillage despite it projecting pretty well. People will smell it on you but it will be at a level that isn’t offensive to them.
We felt that Sogno Reale would work best on male skin, or for people wanting something on the more masculine side of the spectrum, especially if you wanted to get away from the run-of-the-mill type scents for this group. It’s incredibly classy and nuanced; wear it when you want to impress be that first date or job interview.
Sogno Reale is presented in a beautiful glass bottle with a cap that is designed to look rather like a sea urchin.
Sogno Reale isn’t the cheapest scent we have reviewed on The Sniff, but it is one of the more complex with outstanding longevity, so expect a bottle to last a long time. It’s available from Bloom Perfumery London where it is priced at £220 for 100ml of Extrait. You can also buy it from the Mendittoroso web boutique where it is priced at €230-250 depending on if you chose a box or slipcover.
We were kindly given a sample of Sogno Reale by the excellent Bloom Perfumery, London.