Perfume Directory

Miyako (2015)
by Auphorie

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Miyako information

Year of Launch2015
GenderShared / Unisex
AvailabilityIn Production
Average Rating
(based on 33 votes)

People and companies

HouseAuphorie
PerfumerEugene Au
PerfumerEmrys Au

About Miyako

The company say: "Walking down the serene street of the ancient capital city of the Far East Land. Golden osmanthus (Kin-Mokusei) flowers are in full bloom, exuding its sweet and exotic scent with notes of ripe apricot, peach and freesia. There are also Yuzu trees in the midst of the osmanthus, adding a hint of citrus to the bouquet. Jackets worn by pedestrians fill the air with a touch of leather. Notes of Jasmine green tea come from the tea house nearby. Geishas with white faces and red lips are walking up and down, and the slight powdery note of those scented sachets tied to their waists slowly penetrates the air. Finally, scents of precious woods from the nearby Jinja (shrine) shine through, accompanied by the sweet, caramellic Katsura leaves which have already turned red in this season of autumn." Vegan-friendly and not tested on animals.

Miyako fragrance notes

Reviews of Miyako

I could call Auphorie Miyako (2015) the "Ozymandius of Osmanthus" and basically be done with the review, but I don't want to short-change anyone. The truth of the matter is Miyako represents a "Maximalist" take on one of the most popular genres in women's perfume: the fruity floral. Just like cut-and-dry aquatics, the fruity floral is probably one of my least favorite genres, as they've been done to death and also like aquatics, almost certainly smell like a dressier version of some body wash or shampoo I've sniffed somewhere whilst shopping for groceries. However, Miyako represents something bigger and bolder than that, so it was worth the sniff even if just for the self-edification. The sibling perfumer team of Eugene and Emyrs Au have presented golden osmanthus - a favorite in mainland Asia - wrapped in apricot and yuzu on a leathery bed of woods and musk. It won't win over anyone not a fan of these notes, but it's quite creative and more powerful than the average fruit basket mall perfume. Hailing from Malaysia, Auphorie tends to factor in a lot of the local culture with their creations, and those familiar with the artisinal house will not be surprised by Miyako.

The scent of Miyako opens with a crescendo of fruit, slamming the nose without apology or subtlety. Fruity florals tend to be very apologist in nature when made by designers; they're usually thin, transparent, relying on a lot of citrus and delicate white florals. With Miyako, an old-school pre-WWII loud randiness is applied to the genre, and the fruit rushes forward with the power of your mother's Tabu (1941), then dries down to an earthy base. Apricot, peach, and yuzu smell like an opened can of Goya nectar, leading into the eventual osmanthus note of the heart. A jasmine indole note makes Miyako a lot dirtier than any fruity floral you'll encounter in Ulta or Sephora, while a green tea note assists in the dry down to the eventual leather in the base. Cedar, sandalwood, and the exotic hinoki wood are claimed to be in the base, but I get no separation with them, and read a giant "blob woods" note swaddled in patchouli and musk, which eventually come to overtake the leather too. This is extrait so longevity is immortal, with close diffusion.

That opening Smucker's fruit jam accord is the real maker or breaker with Miyako, followed by the osmanthus, as the rest of the wear is sweet woods and musk with a leathery tinge that from afar could be a lot of things. The perfume is certainly quality, and is very dense, blended, and will give fans of the style plenty to savor, but is just a bit too cloying for me. Miyako is labeled unisex but this style traditionally appeals more to feminine tastes, but that doesn't mean a guy who loves stuff like Joop! Homme (1989) won't find some synergy with Miyako, making it worth a sniff. Neutral is the highest I can rate this as per my own tastes, but I can understand the hype surrounding Miyako from perfumistas fond of rich, fruity florals that have solid non-synthetic foundations. Miyako is quite the rare bird in that it delivers it's theme in a rather opaque style, it's just not something I could ever see myself reaching for despite this distinction. Regardless, I implore seeking this out for folks who want something in this vein with enough gumption to withstand the cold, which is where most other fruity florals and "fruitchouli" perfumes fail.
12th December, 2018
It's good but I'm not blown away? Maybe I need to use more, but the sample is rather small.
I'll report back
12th December, 2018
An osmanthus heaven. A Chinoiserie painting. A complex tapestry with thread of osmanthus, apricot, tea, hinoki and animalic musk woven into an exotic Far East garden. ...
Definitely worths the award!
23rd October, 2018
Auphorie typifies a strain of indie maximalism and Miyako is their gale force creation.
An anecdote: while we had house guests who had been sampling my collection, my normally non-perfume wearing partner decided to pick up a random bottle and spray himself. His hand alighted on Miyako and he went for the three to four sprays that are usually a happy mean for most perfumes. A perfume bomb exploded. We went to an open air event and a cloud of Miyako enveloped us and emanated far beyond – other people gave us dodgy looks. By lunchtime we had had enough and begged him to wash some of it off. Thus, ‘beast mode’ hunters, look no further. The rest – be warned and use with discretion.
No prior perfume quite matches Miyako’s golden effulgence, a wave of (over)ripe peach and apricot breaks first over the wearer, the scent concentrated, jammy, before it starts letting some air in and opening out to the matching floral note around which Miyako is centred – the fruity-leathery osmanthus blossom. There are delicious tart accents and before long a worn and sweaty leather comes into play; it’s a scent close to decaying flowers, offering a touch of gravitas in what is perhaps an over-indulgent creation. At the far periphery is a suggestion of something spice-like – perhaps the tea and wood notes mentioned? The play of decadent and sombre elements in Miyako is at the heart of its power and mystery, and why, like old age, it’s not for sissies. Miyako is like an eternal sunset, suffused in peachy radiance and yet touched by regret for the fading day.
The Au brothers are nothing if not daring, and in Miyako they hold back nothing in terms of the sweet cloying nature of osmanthus, but at the same time they make it majestically diffusive, bringing a dimension of great spaciousness that makes it a perfume to inhabit rather than a head-throbber. Miyako smells far fresher, brighter and downright juicy fruitier on a paper strip than it does on skin, and sometimes I catch myself wishing that Auphorie would release a version that would ditch the leather and smell like that on the wearer, too.
02nd September, 2018 (last edited: 11th September, 2018)
Every scent that I end up truly loving, I dislike on first sniff. Usually, if I adore something after one sampling, I grow tired of it or find it too simplistic in the long run. Miyako is a case in point. My first impressions made me wrinkle my nose. I am not a fan of the fruity or the sweet, and (heaven help me) Miyako is definitely both. In fact, according to everything I thought I knew about my perfume tastes, this particular Auphorie should be my scent-nemesis, and yet...after accidentally spilling an entire sample on myself, I spent the rest of the day in a state of sniffing euphoria. That same night I searched the internet high and low and now own a full bottle.

I'm still not quite sure how this happened.

Edit: After wearing Miyako for about a month, I think I can speak a bit more educatedly about this scent. The leathery base notes are what save this for me and what undercut its initial sweetness. There is a just slightly "off" wooded-muskiness that moves this out of the traditional fruity-floral genre and adds a wondrously odd and dusty/musty angle that I adore. It is this surprising combination of sweet and sour, floral and mineral/animal that turns Miyako into something unusual and, to my nose, divine.
10th August, 2018 (last edited: 28th September, 2018)
Upon the first initial spray I am overwhelmed by a greatness of apricot, yuzu, and peach. These notes pulse as if thrown in a blender. The osmanthus and jasmine-tea are earthy yet sweet. Only a distant hint of leather. The woods and patchouli - they create a false incense mirage. This is dark. Warm. Caramel-like. Genius!
31st July, 2018

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