Roja Dove releases Risque at London’s Madame JoJo’s

by Katie on April 25, 2012

The hint of the name and feel of this new fragrance launch was the venue in itself, Madame JoJo’s – famous Burlesque joint of past seedy glory days, of transvestism and tantrums, gangsters and players, cabaret and cocktails. 

A number of my journalist colleagues commented they had never darkened its doors, a statement I can’t lay claim to, having Soho in my veins since arriving in London and having experienced (thank God) many of the more dubious elements and drinking dens of Soho before it continues to be swallowed up by developers and homogenised into oblivion.
The launch began with cocktails as a small throng gathered to hear Mr Dove take to the stage and introduce his latest release, Risque, before marrying the perfume to performance as burlesque artiste and singer, Miss Polly Rae took over to entertain. Singing sexed up versions of ‘Bad’ and ‘Fever’, Polly sashayed and seduced the audience, taking swigs from cocktails on tables and sidling up to various men as she purred her way through a suitably risque performance, finishing the evening with a striptease. Not your usual perfume launch, but then again, Roja Dove isn’t your usual perfumer.
Roja Dove creates the most alluring perfumes that captivate and entrance so many that his concoctions often sell out immediately, leaving many in larger fragrance houses wonder of his skill and hypnotic ability. These are perfumes made from the soul and sold appealing to the soul, as such. Dove converts are almost maniacally devoted to the cause, knowing their distinctiveness and their power to enthral. And so it is with Risque. 
My only degree of dubiousness comes from the name itself. The juice is so blindingly beautiful it had me at hello and the name, though as edgy and captivating as the perfume, may be the wrong side of sophistication for this is a perfume that reeks of elegance.

She may be classically 1950’s and Soho in feel but this is one to wear, swanning in the joint wrapped in fur and diamonds, swaying slightly on over-expensive heels and trailing perfume and A-Gay admirers as any good time diva does on a weekly occurrence. 
Risque’s beauty lies in its depth and resonance. This is a sensual rich chypre full of the right type of sin, of softness and of a knowing personality. Its appeal in particular (for me) is this is not for everyone nor for every day, but should be held close as a weapon of seduction, a sneakily applied potion that finishes the outfit and seals the deal – wear and be damned, if you’re lucky.

Risque’s warmth and sweetness comes from its Jasmine, Rose and Ylang Ylang and the gorgeous sensual earthiness of Oakmoss, Patchouli and Vetiver. These ingredients are expertly balanced and blended to the sublime (a trademark of Mr Dove) with Bergamot adding a piquant touch. The headiness hales from the Hyacinth added to devastating effect and with the barest touch of Chamomile.

As with life, it sometimes pays to live on the edge and take things to extreme. Risque makes her point with panache.

Risque is available in 100ml Eau de Parfum (£195) and 50ml Parfum (£295) at Roja Dove’s Haute Parfumerie.

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