At the bracing first spay of Nautica Voyage it puts me in mind of sailing on a crisp bright spring morning on San Francisco Bay. Fog rolling like cotton ball breakers over the Golden Gate tasting of salt and meeting the low East Bay heat from the interior. It swirls crisp and cold up over the water until it evaporates near Alcatraz Island. This is pretty typical for a spectacular spring day on the bay. Summer on the bay is colder still and only in fall is it really more like summer anywhere else but here. Well, like we say here in The City…If you don’t like the weather wait three days.
But Nautica is not all sunny spring or foggy summers. There is another side I picked up on from this fragrance, one of danger and excitement.
In the depth of winter there is another place that I find entrancing if a bit dangerous, Highway 1 just south of Pacifica on the way to Half Moon Bay. Devils Slide it is called and for a very good reason. In the fog or shattering rain the Slide is a thrill ride not easily forgotten. Every winter when the rains come some, of or all of it shears off with a great thunder crack of angred earth. Wrenched from its perch hundreds of feet above the storm torn Pacific it crashes into the sea taking everything that is on it with it down to the icy fingers of Poseidon. (He winters in California…I thought you knew that.) And when I ride along this patch of the highway as a passenger in the midst of a winter squall I peer over the edge of the cliffs and grip the sides of the car seat wondering if we will survive the ride. It is on the worst teetering leaning parts of the curves of Devil’s Slide that I remember this is where Lana Turner and Anthony Quinn pushed Efrem Zimbalist Jr.’s car with him in it off the cliff in “Portrait in Black” I have never passed that spot without thinking that scene in the film. The wet rainy smell of the sea and the sage on the hills around this spot on Devil’s Slide is wonderful. Yet still, it is a lovely spot for a little murder.
The first spay from the beautiful bottle delivers a very brisk and cool Green Apple opening that delights the nose. The middle notes are watery with sweet Mimose and Water Lily. The Mimose is not too sweet and just a hint of fruitiness. Once out of the water and on the beach you meet with the notes of amber, musk, cedar and Oakmoss. This is where that sage like scent that I mentioned comes in. Nautica Lasts on my skin a good 7 to 8 hours and at the dry down the projection is not intrusive. At the end it is very close to the skin yet still can get a nice complement at the end of the day
(It was all just make believe! Lana with director Michael Gordon at Devil’s Slide.)
Nautica Voyage was a blind buy for me. What attracted me initially was the beauty of the bottle. How shallow am I? Very! Let’s face it; I have a fondness for beautiful things. But back on point now, I was pleasantly surprised by the truly refreshing fragrance. It is a great spring or summer scent. In winter it should only be worn to commit a crime of passion.
Four Solid Silver Stars ****