Vintage Rochas Moustache starts by soon as an appalling giant.....stormy (dry spicy), "cologney", rooty, humid, woody (in a bitter-sugary way) and "cloudy". You can feel by soon that the scent is a classy articulated aldehydic-hesperidic-animalic-mossy chypre (a la Monsieur Rochas, Arrogance Pour Homme, Dunhill or Balenciaga Portos) and frankly I see by soon the juxtaposition between the "boisterous" spicy-aldehydic-hesperidic-herbal opening (really messy and almost discouraging) and a smoother yet upcoming (by soon rising from the background) mossy-woody-leathery-resinous accord enriched by (effectively) viney-uriney (Vero Profumo Onda-like) animalic undertones (mostly ambergris, musk and honey). At the beginning, apart the lavender-bergamot-oakmoss-wild vetiver spicy/aldehydic accord you can catch by soon a stark dry "bitter licorice/roots/burnt sugar like" woodiness (a la Etro Sandalo) and a dry tobacco contextual presence. Bergamot is almost fizzy medicinal and green vegetal while an animalic honey-ambergris-musk-leather accord starts rising up in effect surrounded and preceded by nutmeg, ginger, coriander and may be cumin. Frankly I don't catch the civet while in my opinion the uriney vibe we can feel by soon on skin is the effect aroused by an accord of leather, honey, rose, dirty musk, woodsy resins, hesperides and spices (mace and cumin in particular). The rose-geranium-carnation accord is incredibly sharp and lymphatic, cedarwood is quite astringent while the leather-oakmoss agreement is by soon shadowy, honeyed, ambery (powdery animalic ambergris), laundry-soapy, herbal, orangy-lemony, bitter-rooty, vaguely fizzy and finally talky. In the final stage the note of jasmine keeps emerging (increasing the honeyed vibe) from the depth of a dry woody and powdery ambergris talc (with more than vague Helmut Lang Cologne's nuances but in a less properly talky and a far more severe woody-bitter-burnt sugary-fruity way). In this phase the aroma is finally smoother (a touch of vanilla soothens the elements), warm, musky, visceral, powdery, sharply fruity (dried fruits) and lemon-jasmine-carnation veined. Moustache is one of the classiest examples of animalic mossy-powdery chypres of the worldwide history of perfumery, a fragrance really commanding (may be forbidding for a part of its run) but at same time (endly) intimate, sexy and reassuring. The cute vintage bottle is to die for. A classic of perfumery unfortunately hard to find but still on the edge if you are lucky to retrieve a vintage piece.
P.S= along the dry down I feel more prominent (i mean..rising up) the note of suede.
01st December, 2014 (last edited: 07th January, 2015)
My review is based on the original vintage EDT version of this scent, which opens with a powerful, almost rusty (aldehydes) oak moss balsamic accord, blended with pungent, tasty herbs and spices, light citrus notes, perhaps also leather or dry tobacco. The opening is really dark and dusty, slightly metallic too, carrying a stout nostalgic and austere feel with a bold "urinous" civet note, which blends with an emerging accord of classic chypre masculine flowers (humid, shady notes of rose, carnation, lavender). As the flowers emerge, the scent evolves on a shady dark rose chypre wrapped in the same initial mossy-earthy, herbal-spicy and leathery notes, with musky skanky notes and a bright herbal-citrus breeze, slightly balsamic too. Oriental (some notes slightly remind me of Phileas), but also quite Western it its "restrained" elegance. In fact, overall there is nothing "raw" or "sensual", despite the animalic musky notes, it's rather a really restrained, austere, solid and noble scent, which kind of fits the era it was born – the late '40s. It carries a nondescript "grey", slightly humid feel which I can not describe better, but it feels like touching a, say, vintage 120s wool Prince of Wales piece of cloth, if that makes sense. Not that friendly and not for everyone, but undoubtedly charming it its nostalgic, monolithic gloominess.
Moustache starts off peppery and aromatic, with what I’m rather certain is a touch of civet lurking in the background. This is a much drier opening than many contemporary men’s scents, and it leaves me wondering where Moustache will go next. It eventually goes down a vanillic, mossy, aromatic, path that leads to a fougère-like heart accord, but it explores a few clever side roads and detours along its way. Though subtle and extremely well blended, the animalic musks apparent at the start lend Moustache a half hidden sense of danger. This well-groomed gentleman still has hormones, still sweats, and still lusts beneath his proper suit and trench coat.
While Moustache exhibits far less animal abandon than say, Jicky, it is by no means neutered. Along with the quiet mammalian funk there is a hard-to-define tangy note. Perhaps it is the “rare fruit” in the scent pyramid, perhaps something else. Whatever it is, it persists through the drydown, coloring what might otherwise have been a conventional base with an oddly compelling sour tinge. What Roudnitska has done with this fragrance foreshadows the approach he used in Eau Sauvage: begin with a traditional formula, then add a subtle, yet unexpected little fillip to give his fragrance a distinct signature. In the case of Eau Sauvage it was an Eau de Cologne formula spiked with hedione. In Moustache it was a classic chypre seasoned with exotic fruit and vaguely lascivious glandular extractions. While neither scent seems novel in today’s fragrance market, both represent a kind of balanced, yet not bland composition that’s grown very rare among today’s designer offerings.
Ooh, like suede! As someone with almost no experience with men's fragrances or vintage ones, this just seems really appealing and sophisticated. It doesn't come across as dated at all to me, but nicely aromatic and herbal, I also like the lightly floral sweetness of the lemon verbana and honey (which isn't syrupy here). I don't find this at all animalic or urinous, but just very inviting and fresh. I feel like FM could release this with a different name, like Suede de Florence for example, and it would be a huge hit again. Would be great in spring/summer, (or fall in temperate climates) It seems really smoothly blended, I've never smelt anything like it, highly recommend!
Daring and timeless. It is an untamed Eau Sauvage.
I picture the dashing Graham Hill wearing this as he straps himself into his Lotus 49.
One of the most unique citrus scents ever created. The scent of oranges, lemons and limes going sour, but not quite to the point of unpleasantness, make this very French in its slightly "dirty" freshness.
Totally wonderful, quite deep for a citrus, and long lasting on me. A true classic.
Note: Dior copied this in 1971 and called it Diorella.