I was having too much fun browsing for photos of the Great Bazaar of Istanbul for this review. Pictures of fruit stands, spices, honey-dripping pastries and those wonderful cubes of powdery rahat lokhum, Turkish Delight... I wanted to beam myself straight to Istanbul so I can stuff my face properly. This might give you the impression that Scent Of Departure- Istanbul is a big gourmand fragrance, but it's actually more of a sweet golden rosy scent.
My first thought when I started testing Istanbul was that it was a very likable rose. I'm not the biggest rose person because it tends to go sour and loud on my skin. But give me a sweet thick jammy one and I'm usually there. Istanbul has all that, with a large helping of peppery wood. I especially liked that touch of cedar and wish it lasted longer than the juicy rose. I could also use a more pronounced lokum note, something closer to the wonderful Traversee du Bosphore (L'Artisan), but then again, I might be demanding way too much from a $45 perfume.
Scent of Departure is a new(ish) brand launched by Gerald Ghislain, the creative mind behind Histoires de Parfums. We've all smelled travel-inspired niche perfumes before, but none priced at $45 for 50ml. Istanbul is a playful fragrance, has good longevity (6-8 hours) and has enough in it to hold my attention despite my general disinterest in rose, so you won't hear any complaints from my corner.
Notes: Bergamot, Grapefruit, Elemi, Pink berries, Rose, Violet, Litchi, Water flowers, Raspberry, Pepper, Sandalwood, Blonde woods, White musk, Cinnamon
Scent of Departure perfumes are available at Henri Bendel in NYC as well as from IndieScents and BeautyHabit. I'm not entirely sure, but I think my sample came from the latter.