Byredo’s Palermo (2010)

Byredo Palermo © Victor Wong
Byredo Palermo © Victor Wong

I had once offered some samples of my perfumes to a nice guy nicknamed “TheNaughtyProf” whom I met on a fragrance forum. After testing out my scents, he politely wrote, “Do you do ANY citrus/citrus floral or citrus woods based frags?”

I think I might disappoint him for a long long time because I find citrusy fragrances/colognes very boring. If a bottle of cologne wants to impress me by jumping off a plane over the Grand Canyon without wearing any parachute I would just let it fall. I just hardly care for any colognes because 1) I have probably eaten too many oranges and lemons in my life, and they are not special to me, and 2) a lot of colognes all end up smelling similar to me when the citrus notes are gone. I have smelled Guerlain’s Eau de Cologne du Coq, Mouchoir de Monsieur, Eau de Guerlain, Eau de Cologne Imperiale, while their base notes all have subtle differences, I still regard them as “very similar”.

But Byredo’s Palermo (an Italian city) is a little different. Palermo smells like pomelos to me. They are huge citrus fruits that I only eat every Chinese Autumn Festival. (It’s just my family tradition to eat pomelos that time of the year and it’s a pain to peel a pomelo.) The citrus smell of pomelos is just subtlety different enough to push me off the edge to fall in love with it. (Similar to people who only like the smell of limes but not lemons.)

What’s funny about Palermo is that it doesn’t contain any palermo essential oils. However, the perfume just smells like pomelos to me, and I associate it to family good time. When the top notes are gone, Palermo again smells like any cologne to me. (Reapply!)

Author: Victor Wong

A perfume lover - niche, designer, modern, vintage, I love them all. I am also the owner of Zoologist Perfumes, a small Canadian perfume house. Please visit or for more info!

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