In the book The Little Prince the narrator of the story is stranded in the Sahara after a plane crash. He has eight days of water and must fix his plane. He meets the little Prince who recounts the story of his life as the narrator fixes his plane. The prince describes his home planet, an asteroid called B612 on earth. There are a number of problems for the prince on his home planet but ultimately he decides to leave and before he meets the narrator he has visited six other planets all inhabited by a single irrational adult. This ink could represent any of the planets visited including the prince’s home planet.
The packaging is the standard limited edition Mont Blanc box of outer hard sleeve with a drawer inside holding the ink bottle. The bottle is square glass and looks like crystal, the Mont Blanc logo is on the cap. I haven’t included a picture of the bottle as they are to be seen on any of my other Mont Blanc LE ink reviews.
I am going to keep referencing Encre du Desert, I really liked prince and planet when I saw it but it is so same same to Encre du Desert that my early conclusion already is one or the other would be good, you don’t need both unless you adore the colour and are a huge Mont Blanc fan. Starting with the boxes the ink comes in, the strip a round the bottom with the inks name is supposed to be indicative of the inks colour. Already you can see there is not much to choose between the two.
On opening the bottle it is burgundy but not particularly ‘rose’ burgundy.
Chromatography was a real surprise. How could an ink so similar to my other burgundy inks be so different in chromatography. This ink a combination of olive, lilac pink red and brick red. I have included Encre du Desert here just to highlight what I mean.
The col-o-ring swatch is a deep pink / red burgundy
Yet when placed against my other Mont Blanc burgundy inks it is more purple based than red.
The swatch on Tomoe river paper does match the description that this is a rose burgundy.
Against Encre du Desert it is definitely the ‘pinker’ of the two. Encre has a really nice gold sheen I have never noticed before.
In the bottle this ink and encre du desert look the same but with chromatography they could not be more different. The swatches I did suggest the difference between the two is minor if there any difference at all. The proof will be in the writing.
Starting with Rhodia the ink dried somewhat towards brown but you do get hints of the underlying rose. It was quick to dry and I apologise for dripping other inks onto the page.
Copy paper – quite brown and very quick to dry.
On Tomoe there was some shading, it was a dark rose burgundy but it still reminded me of you know what. So I inked another pen to compare the inks. Tomoe is supposed to be the paper that brings out the best in inks so if there is any difference it should be seen here. If there is any difference it is really subtle because I can’t see it.
I do like this ink. I love the older ink I keep going on about so even if this is so similar I am happy with having more of an ink I like but I probably didn’t need to buy it had I known in advance. Part of the reason for me bleating on about the two inks is that I buy all my inks and Mont Blanc are not cheap. Even though I like the colour I feel duped as I thought I was buying something really different with this ink and I wasn't. I bought directly from Mont Blanc as they ship internationally with no postage charge.
In summary -
Saturation – high
Shading – yes but paper dependent and even then minimal
Sheen – no
Shimmer - no
Flow - good
Nib dry-out - none
Nib creep - none
Start-up – Excellent
Feathering - no
Drying – the best of all the Mont Blanc inks I have reviewed ie not affected by paper quality, overall quick.
Cleaning - good
Water resistance – not sold as waterproof and isn’t