Arancia La Spugnatura Limited Edition – The New Perfume by Acqua di Parma
From an ancient and exquisite artisanal extraction technique comes a rare and precious citrus essence, the heart of a vivacious and multi-faceted composition. Traditionally used only to obtain the most precious essence from bergamot fruits, La Spugnatura is an antique extraction method practiced by a few artisans in Italy. True to Acqua di Parma’s DNA of being inspired by its heritage to create contemporary interpretations, the Maison explores the age-old technique on a different citrus fruit, Arancia Vaniglia, to craft a new-limited edition scent. The starring fruit of ‘the city of oranges’ Ribera in Sicily, the Arancia Vaniglia name alludes to the perfect olfactive oxymoron where its contrasting olfactory properties intersect the freshness of oranges with the alluring softness of vanilla. A bittersweet symphony that unfolds a surprising olfactive experience.
THE TRADITIONAL SPONGING TECHNIQUE
A project long nurtured by the Maison, which has always worked to preserve the oldest and most valuable artisanal processes, it is here in Italy where very few artisans in the world still practice the ancient sponging technique. A fascinating traditional expertise, which sees an entirely manual extraction of the citrus essence. A true art that requires time and skillful, precise, delicate gestures. The artisan cuts each fruit in two equal halves with a well-sharpened knife. Then, using a utensil in the shape of a spoon named “cavatore,” he separates the skin from the pulp. Immediately after, the orange rinds are manually pressed on sea sponges, which absorb all the essence. In the final phase, the artisan squeezes the sponges full of essential oil with precise movements into a terracotta container to collect the rich citrus elixir. The limited production capacity that depends entirely on manual processes gives rise to the ingredient’s scarcity. Only 300g of essence is extracted from approximately 100kg of fruit, and two artisans can work through a volume equaling 300kgs of fruits in a day. Subsequently, the supply chain uses all other components of the orange fruit for various purposes without generating any waste. The sponge, malleable and soft when in contact with the rind, preserves all the facets of the fruit and it is this unique sillage that distinguishes the elixir that gives life to Arancia La Spugnatura.
THE OLFACTORY PYRAMID
Arancia la Spugnatura is the maximum expression of this distinctive ingredient in all its depth and richness. Joyful, luminous, and embracing, it’s a fragrance that splendidly surprises like the glorious rays of the Italian sun. The initial burst of citrus notes brings contrasts, as does the Arancia Vaniglia, which combines the freshness typical of citrus fruits with a degree of softness and roundness; a contrast which is also found in the yellow mandarin versus the bitter almond, which adds a bittersweet touch. Finally, black pepper adds a touch of texture and brilliance. Created by master perfumer François Demachy, the composition is an equilibrium of contrasts that unfolds a surprising olfactive experience.
THE PORCELAIN BOTTLE AND THE ICONIC HATBOX
The porcelain represents the most special category within the ceramic family. An excellent piece of artisanship that is distinctive for its intense blue colour embodying the Blu Mediterraneo collection. The long process starts with the production of the plaster mould, in which the porcelain mix is manually poured to form its iconic Art Déco form. The mould is rotated several times on its axis to ensure that the mixture adheres to the sides and is then turned upside down to unload any extra mix. Then, the bottle is left to dry for 30-40 minutes before being removed from the mould in a solid form. The artisan then refines the individual bottles, removing any minimal imperfections to obtain an even surface that is smooth to the touch. It is then dipped into a glaze bath and placed to bake in an oven for 8 hours, during which the bottle takes on a deeper blue tone that is highlighted by a shiny finish. For the final touch, the bottle is hand-embellished with white, burnished orange, and golden motifs inspired by the ingredients of the perfume before being baked for a second time to set the décor. Capped off with a blue porcelain lid, the bottle has a neck that is made from a unique grinding technique developed specifically for Acqua di Parma and is fitted with a removable screw top pump. The label on the bottle is made from scrap powder from marble quarries while the iconic cylindrical box is made from FSC-certified paper set in a special blue tone to match the porcelain bottle.