Méchant Loup by L'Artisan is a seducer. It lures you in with sweet promises of honey and hazelnuts toasted just enough. It doesn't have any of the popular mainstream opening notes- nothing fresh, green or citrusy here. It's all heart.
While a hazelnut, honey and wood perfume could have easily turn into the land of praline and become another one of those "eat me" mall scents, this isn't the case. In fact, Méchant Loup is generally regarded as a masculine scent. And indeed, once the initial notes calm down and retreat, you are left with a very woody and quite dark fragrance. It's very smooth though not quite creamy, and surprisingly chilly- like touching the bark of a tree in an old forest, so thick that sunshine doesn't reach through the thick intertwined treetops.
Does evil lurk in that ancient forest? After all, Méchant Loup means 'bad wolf'. It's the temptation, I think, to get closer and closer to the source of the sweetness and discover its true face. A man wearing it is quite irresistible. I wear it for that smooth honeyed core as well as for the coolness of the wood. I spray it liberally so the EDT lasts for at least ten hours on my skin, and while it doesn't make me feel like a she-wolf I can't help but sniff myself often.
Méchant Loup ($95, 1.7 oz) is available from Henri Bendel, L'Artisan Parfumeur boutiques (where they still exist. The freestanding ones in NYC have all closed), Barneys and Aedes in NYC and Blue Mercury stores. Most of them also sell online. I bought my bottle a few years ago, probably from Aedes.
Image: Little Red Riding Hood and the Big Bad Wolf by Richard Hermann Eschke.