Here’s a really nice, solid green-vetiver-lavender-nutmeg-cloves blend, as much elegant as earthy and spicy. Simple but totally good, if you’re into the notes; it smells rich, classy, fresh, effortless, revolving around vetiver’s trademark “relaxed” coziness, clean yet earthy and natural. Quite a lot of pleasant nuances coming and going, I get a slap of zesty citrus initially, then herbs (my guess of lavender may be due to that), something floral, something slightly indolic too... a totally unpretentious and perfectly compelling “natural landscape”. And stuffed with spices though, especially as hours pass: cloves and nutmeg above all, which at some point seem even “overpassing” the axe vetiver-herbs. Initially I thought this hadn’t much in common with Cacharel pour l’Homme, but after the opening (say, one hour or so), Eau de Gouverneur comes undoubtedly close to it, although keeping it a bit less heavy on the spices. Really nice overall, “easy” in the most positive meaning possible.
Woody Sunscreen Lotion?...
L'Eau du Gouverner opens with a fresh strait alcohol blast before a relatively sharp lemon verbena makes itself known with just the faintest hints of a woody cedar undercarriage. As the fragrance enters the early heart the woody accord takes the fore, gently nutmeg spiced with supporting lavender-like green clary sage. Underneath the herbal woods is what can only be described as a sharp musky furniture varnish-like accord (or to put it another way the fragrance frequently found in many sun screen lotion bases). Things stay very linear through the late dry-down as the woody cedar stays through the end sans spices and herbs, joined by the remnants of the musk that never completely dissipate. Projection is on the low side of average to slightly below average and longevity is average at 8-9 hours on skin.
Based on the published notes I should absolutely be going gaga over L'Eau du Gouverneur. It is somewhat puzzling, but I just have not warmed completely to the composition despite multiple full wearings over the past couple months. I think it must be that underlying varnish/sunscreen base vibe that I can't seem to shake from my mind, making me associate wearing this with the beach or the pool and not as a serious fragrance. That may be unfair, but there is no getting around it. Musky sunscreen vibe aside, the overall fragrance profile is quite linear and after the first minute passes you pretty much know what you are in for through the duration. The bottom line is while I know L'Eau du Gouverneur has its fans and there are facets of the woody driven composition I too enjoy, but at the end of the day the "good" 3 star out of 5 rated L'Eau du Gouverneur is worth a look, but despite its alluring sub $50 street price tag I can't recommend it without reservation.
Pros: Very mild, easy to wear...
Cons: Underlying sunscreen base vibe that somewhat ruins the experience...
For some reason I find the made for men or unisex creations of the house of Comptoir Sud Pacifique *much* better than the blunt and literal feminine perfumes. L'EAU DU GOUVERNEUR is an excellent example and may even be my favorite CSP offering of all (of those I've tried...).
This smooth woody oriental perfume (and I do believe that it is 100% unisex--not a masculine cologne, by any stretch of the imagination) features a variety of very hard-hitting spices, most notably nutmeg and allspice, but they are blended so beautifully that none overwhelms, as so often happens when such spices are used in perfume. The slightly citrus opening is very shortlived, and the composition nearly immediately settles down to a gorgeous, tightly woven tapestry of spices and woods with medium sillage and good longevity.
L'EAU DU GOUVERNEUR (or in my case, GOUVERNEUSE!) is perfect for fall weather and makes me want to stroll down a path strewn with piles of multicolored leaves being jostled about by a cool breeze.
Top: verbena, bergamot, lemon
Mid: clary sage, nutmeg, pepper, clove
Base: cedar, vetiver, tonka, musk
L’Homme by Comptoir Sud Pacifique has a lovely citrusy-aromatic opening. The verbena is well done, with its typical lemon-basil-baked bread notes. This gives a nice transition to the green spice middle, which is an appealing concoction of dusky clary sage and peppery spices. The clove is prominent and gives a brisk and assertive character. L’Homme winds up being as an excellent vetiver/spice/wood scent. Every element develops and interacts in a very satisfying manner. A warming cool-weather scent.
The citrus opening is quite good but extremely short lasting. It disappears quickly because the allspice rising from the heart notes comes on strong very quickly into the opening. This allspice note is balanced with a nutmeg note in an accord that dominates most of the fragrance. It is an engaging accord — it could be looked at as either an extra aromatic nutmeg or a partially grounded cloves; whatever... the combination is addictive. The pepper also contributes to the aromatic abundance of the middle but in a more subtle way than the allspice of the top. The clary sage cools down the excess warmth of the allspice, nutmeg, and pepper, while at the same time, it builds further on to the enchanting spicy accord. The dry down could be stronger, I believe; it gets very close to the skin, and it is quite a smooth, woody accord — warm and a bit exotic. I’ve tested several of Comptoir Sud Pacifique fragrances, and this is by far my favorite: It is daring; it is refined; it is masculine; it is wearable. It could last longer but it is still a very good fragrance. (Edit of 23 October 2007 review.)
23rd October, 2007 (last edited: 26th September, 2009)
This Gouverneur seems to be sitting on two chairs. There's a core - a formalish old-shool male cologne, and a shell - CSP's signature sweet tropical spice syrup, and the twain don't exactly meet. Not a bad scent altogether, but there is something synthetic and unfinished about it.