Someone who has never visited certain online forums is highly unlikely to guess that Aventus, a 2010 fragrance by Creed is a controversial subject that makes emotions run high and tempers flare. If the same someone never read Creed's marketing materials and press release he or she is also not going to think of this soft and friendly unisex-to-masculine cologne as very Napoleonic --
"inspired by the dramatic life of an historic emperor who waged war, peace and romance on terms he set, riding on horseback to victory."Aventus is a fruity woody perfume if you go by its notes or a fresh aromatic/fougere according to Michael Edwards. The opening has two parallel threads. One is a fairly nice tart fruit that's a bit surprising for the dramatic masculine it's supposed to be, but almost immediately you can also smell a very standard aromatic dry bergamot that is not just tiresomely familiar, but also more fitting for a ubiquitous department store than for a Creed boutique. Yes, there's a hint of the promised pineapple but it won't make anyone stop in their tracks and reconsider what a masculine perfume is all about.
As Aventus develops it softens quite a bit and lets in some smoky wood that lingers nicely on clothes (better than on my skin, actually) and can account for a lot of the love this fragrance gets. The sillage seems very limited, but after several testings I realized that Aventus actually hangs around me in a free-form bubble that is not very obvious but feels quite pleasant. It's soft and not too distinct but it's still there for a few hours after spraying. While I can't say that Aventus is unique in any way, it is a very nice fragrance, undemanding and it satisfies my fondness of masculine scents as a nostalgic treat.
Notes: blackcurrant, Italian bergamot, French apples, pineapple, rose, birch, Moroccan jasmine, patchouli, musk, oak moss, ambergris and vanilla.
Aventus by Creed ($140, 30ml EDP) is available from Luckyscent, Neiman Marcus, Bergdorf Goodman and Creed boutiques around the world.
Art: Napoleon and son by Charles Steuben.