One Thousand Scents

Friday, January 05, 2007

Malt Ease: Aquolina Chocolovers

Remember Carnation Instant Breakfast? Nowadays in Canada, you can get it in only three flavours--chocolate, vanilla, and strawberry--but there used to be a bunch more: chocolate malt (which is still available in the U.S.), eggnog, and coffee, among others.

Aquolina Chocolovers eventually smells very, very much like the chocolate malt flavour. Or, rather, it smells like the powder, before it had been mixed with milk. Or, I suppose I have to say, it smells the way I remember that stuff smelling: it's been a while. Maybe they've changed the formula; perhaps I should e-mail my mom in Florida and get her to send me a box so I can compare the two.

Chocolovers is going to disappoint anyone who expects a rich chocolate scent along the lines of CSP's Amour de Cacao, because it's not about chocolate per se. It starts with an unexpected, and exhilarating, burst of citrus fruits, but it's not like a Terry's Chocolate Orange, either: the citrus notes include lemon, orange, and bergamot, and are much more potent than anything you'll find in a chocolate bar.

After the hesperides have had their say, the middle notes speak up, and they're as much about the malt as about the chocolate. They have a dry character (which is what makes me think of that breakfast powder), and the malt note nearly overwhelms the chocolate; it's the most dramatic thing about the scent. (When I first tried it, it was just about all I could smell: it took a couple of tries before the whole thing made sense.) There's a hazelnut note which isn't nearly strong enough for my taste, and the expected vanilla in the base, and that's just about it.

Chocolovers is less sweet than Pink Sugar but more so than Blue Sugar. I think it's the most successful of the three scents: it's certainly more original than the other two.


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