Getting to Know You: Olympic Orchids, Javanica

During initial skin testing of the sample batch from Olympic Orchids, the perfume that immediately caught my interest above all the others was Javanica—and so is naturally the first one I’m spending a little more quality time with…

A spicy, metallic note greets me in the opening of Javanica, a tang reminiscent of the saffron note that I love so much in Safran Troublant. There’s also a plush, creamy, cocoa-butter accord, and the juxtaposition of spicy/metallic/creamy/buttery is absolutely divine. An almost (almost) coffee-like quality is present, though I can’t imagine what material is causing this sensory effect—the nutmeg, maybe? Could be a psychological by-product of the Java in Javanica. It’s sweet, but not overly so, though it does push into gourmand territory. I never met an orchid that smelled like this, but since Ellen’s the authority on Orchid’s, I’ll take her word for it.

Suddenly you’re captivated by a sweet, heady scent that seems to be coming from an invisible flower. It’s Phalaenopsis javanica, whose tiny red-striped flowers hide underneath the huge, shiny, umbrella-like leaves and produce a seductive spicy flowery scent.
—Olympic Orchids

A small bottle of Javanica will, in the not-distant future, be added to my collection. Prices are refreshingly affordable, and range from $15 (5mL) to $60 (50mL). Read a review by Irina, at NetWorks of Independent Perfume Art, and another by la Bonne Vivante at Hortus Conclusus.

Notes: citrus, bergamot, fruity notes, nutmeg, frankincense, lily-of-the-valley, rosewood, and vanilla. My sample of Javanica was generously provided by the perfumer.

6 thoughts on “Getting to Know You: Olympic Orchids, Javanica

  1. Lucky you, Dee! I have Javanica in soap form (it does wonders for my lingerie drawer!), but I haven’t yet had the chance to try it in perfume form, and…I’m dyin’ over here!

    You wrote a beautiful review. I suspect Doc Elly will have at the very least three new avid fans…I know I am!

    1. Javanica soap sounds awesome, and I think I’ll pick some up! She sent me Arizona soap, and when I got out of the shower yesterday, my husband demanded to know what smelled so good… “It’s the soap!” said I, and marveled at the lovely waft…

      Haha, I don’t know if I’d say “beautiful” review, but sincere, nonetheless. 😉

      As always, thank you for reading!

    1. Yes, I can hardly believe that a flower smells like this! If I didn’t have a black-thumb and possess the kiss-of-death for all but the hardiest cacti, I think I might take up orchid growing. 🙂


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