Cuba Black smells effectively like an ideal blend of the classic Azzaro Pour Homme (and Tuscany of course), Enrico Coveri Pour Homme, Police Dark, Drakkar Noir, Rive Gauche Pour Homme and Ungaro III. The aroma is mysterious but in a fresh, dynamic, aromatic, barbershop way. Yes, sparkling spicy-anisic bergamot is a key element and is combined with fizzy lavender, orange, fresh patchouli, hints of forest resins, green aromatic notes, jasmine-geranium, a touch of tobacco, dry woods and ambergris-oakmoss. I detect the anisic slightly resinous licorice vibe some talk about (close to the one I detect in Police Dark which shares with Cuba Black a bunch of elements). It seems to catch also that boozy gin-vodka touch we can easily detect in the Ungaro III's top notes (a touch of white rum may be?). Really heady the accord between hesperides, herbs, resins, patchouli and floral notes. Cuba Black is basically a powerhouse despite a touch of final soothing (tobacco veined) balminess absolutely not compromising the general extreme (spicy/pungent) virility. I absolutely agree with Foetidus when he talks about absence of famboyance since this juice smells effectively brooding, "un-lively", romantic/melancholic and moody. Anyway one of the best solutions around at that price (£ 6,79 in London) and the synthetic level is never disturbing. Fine, dark, charismatic, inexpensive and virile.
P.S= Finally Cuba Black conjures me more than vaguely the classic Enrico Coveri Pour Homme.
22nd August, 2014 (last edited: 26th February, 2015)
What have I been SMOKING ?
These Cigar shaped Cuba fragrances are the best entertainment short of actually lighting up, well..."anything" ; ) But nonetheless, you DO have to inhale ! LOL
Each Cuba has the same Cigar Tobacco undertone to my nose, on top of which, a different scent/combo is layered. BLACK, is Fresh, Spicy Jasmine overtop of pungent Cigar Tobacco. The result, is a hefty, slightly salty, Licorice tinged Oriental scent, that carries itself with surprising Balance and Character. Projection is quite satisying for the first 2 hrs. Then it becomes softer, more powdery, quickly losing it's complexity as it dries ( Hey, I'm shocked there was ANY to begin with ). But the scent is still noticeable enough to be enjoyed for another 2hrs or so, if you dig it. The Quality (not the smell) is in line with something like Victorinox's $30 bottle of Swiss Army "Altitude"...and with more imagination and Character than that ( for less than $10 ). Which is to say, that Cuba Black.. is NOT half Bad !
So far, Cuba's kitschy line of cheapies have all been Surprising, in mostly good ways. At this rate, I might need to buy myself a Humour(dor) for their storage ; )
Projection(Fall temp):6.5/10(in mid)
composition)– in the 30ml cigar flacon.
How:Casual,anytime,fall,winter, for the
Fun of it !
23rd January, 2014 (last edited: 18th April, 2014)
Almost identical to the marvelous Azzaro Pour Homme on me EXCEPT.....Lasting power is not as good. For the price though it's a gem!
03rd March, 2012 (last edited: 07th May, 2012)
Cuba Black has the grace to imitate a really good men's fragrance (Azzaro pour Homme) and the technical chops to imitate it well.
Black is a classic 1970s-1980s masculine fougere, though I find it sweeter than the noted bruisers of its genre (Drakkar Noir, for instance). There's a penetrating, chewy note that makes me think of anise, plenty of lavender, and a general soapy barbershop niceness. Is there tobacco in the base? Maybe.
I find Black MUCH closer to Azzaro than to Tuscany, which is an entirely different idea (herbs galore, incredible bitterness). Black doesn't even smell particularly synthetic, which is a marvel given that it's about $4 for 50ml. Projection is monstrous; apply in moderation.
I'd probably pick Azzaro over this but I'm not sure if I could reliably tell the two apart in a blind test. Highly recommended.
If I have to visually describe it there's a big black something (tarry, almost bitter, similar to isobutyl quinoline found in Aramis, Bandit etc. but without the loudness and directness they bring) with a pale white spot on top (camphoraceous, medicinal, herbal). When I think about it, I always imagine two layers not so well matched - and I have a similar image for Black Jeans and Passage d'Enfer, and I actually like this type of structure. Gradually these two layers start to merge better and the fragrance becomes more plain and flawless, the 'bright' top turned to calming aromatic mix of lavender and flowers, black base remaining quite the same. No bitterness - yet all the time lingering on the edge of it, the aromatic layer not letting it to go further and become a burned tar monster. Quite an achievement. I had a brief affair with tarry leathers like the above mentioned; now I find them outdated and in-your face. This one manages to balance the film noir feeling with an 80's refinement. Good!
Feels like a mix of Azzaro Pour Homme and Versace Black Jeans (the "cooked cabbage" smell is here). Like the latter, it is a very dark fragrance that lives up to its name - "Black". Not particularly enjoyable to me, but somehow more wearable than Black Jeans.