Perfume Reviews

Reviews by landshark321

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Total Reviews: 502

Live Jazz by Yves Saint Laurent

The third iteration of Jazz, Live Jazz, released in 1998, a decade after the original, is a significant departure from the original and Jazz Prestige in that it's much fresher and less spicy.

It opens with a citrus lemon/grapefruit mix and mint, drying down into a slightly herbal heart with some punch via coriander, and finally a base of cedar and ambergris. As with the other Jazz renditions, the woody notes stand out most in the dry down, which in this case is the cedar.

With Live Jazz, versatility is up but performance, masculinity, and a semblance of a more classic style are each lower. It's a trade-off that makes Live Jazz more pleasing to most, even for use by women, but will undoubtedly turn away those that enjoy the spiciness of the original and especially Jazz Prestige. Still, Live Jazz is a very pleasant, mildly fresh and woody blend that serves its purpose---a modern take on the more classic fragrance.

7 out of 10
20th April, 2017

Jazz Prestige by Yves Saint Laurent

YSL Jazz Prestige is noticeably sharper and spicier than the original Jazz, having sampled the original only yesterday. It's certainly similar, or at least an homage, to the original released five years prior.

The most substantial deviation from the original occurs during opening, during which the sharp blast of spiciness is borderline overwhelming, whereas the original remained a bit more consistent. In the dry down, though, Jazz Prestige is much closer to the original Jazz

Oakmoss factors in heavily still, with a mix of some citrus, more amplified spice via cinnamon and pepper, and a similar dry down of leather, sandalwood, patchouli, and of course the oakmoss. None of the drydown elements stand out except the oakmoss--I get hints of leather and patchouli, and a generally woodiness of sandalwood or possibly cedar, but nothing striking apart from the oakmoss, now no longer used in natural form

Despite the higher-rated consensus of Jazz Prestige, I slightly prefer the balance and more classic feel of the original Jazz, but only slightly. Jazz Prestige is still a fun wear, a good throwback, and a powerful masculine option. I'm not sure I'd seek this one out either but certainly this is worthy of having continued the Jazz name. Next will be Live Jazz.

7 out of 10
19th April, 2017

Jazz by Yves Saint Laurent

Finally happy to try this as I've heard much about it, and YSL Jazz harkens back to the both the power fragrance era and the end of the era during which fougeres were prominent, as it seems to be both a bit of a fougere as well as a heavier spicier winter order.

I definitely get more "spicy" than "fresh" as I smell Jazz, but it's indubitably a bit of both. However, the lavender, from the opening through much of the dry down, remains a prominent accord that makes it lean toward fougere. However, the spicy elements of cinnamon, sandalwood, cedar, leather, tobacco, and most notably, oakmoss, take over in the dry down and give Jazz a heavier character than a "true" fougere, perhaps.

I'm not in love with Jazz specifically but I'm fond of the men's fragrances of the era, as many like this are masculine and strong and harken back to a time now 30 years removed.

As with many vintage 1980s, the performance is just fine, as it projects and lasts plenty.

7 out of 10
18th April, 2017
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Rush for Men by Gucci

One of the more vaunted discontinued Gucci Fragrances (like Pour Homme and Envy), Rush for Men has a strong reputation and seemingly special place in the hearts of many male fragrance enthusiasts, so I decided to sample it for the first time by ordering a few sample vials off eBay.

The scent is itself is not at all disappointing, a fresh/spicy/woody mix of lavender, cypress, sandalwood, cedar, and musk, mainly. Several descriptors come to mind: versatile, year-round, masculine.

Performance is a bit more limited than I'd hoped for, being pretty modest on project, albeit with decent longevity.

Certainly Rush for Men is a fragrance I'd have in my collection if it were much cheaper (I imagine it was modestly priced on FragranceNet not so long ago)

8 out of 10
17th April, 2017

Boisé Fruité by Montale

Montale Boise Fruite, while not smelling much like Creed Silver Mountain Water out of the tester atomizer I received, does smell a lot more like SMW on skin. Simply put, it's a pretty good approximation with decent performance, but it falls a bit in between the real thing and a good cheap like Deray Parfums White Attitude that's $20 for 100ml. AT over $100 for 100ml on the secondary market, Boise Fruite falls short of having the real smell though it does embody better performance than other imitations. A decent creation by Montale but unoriginal and probably not the best cheaper clone option.

7 out of 10
13th April, 2017

Battito d'Ali by Profumum

Profumum rarely fails to deliver an interesting mix, and while Battito d'Ali isn't necessarily a mix I'd expect to love, it's nonetheless a well-executed creation that showcases the high quality of the brand.

I get mainly a white floral accord from it so I'm a little surprised to see that the only, or at least the primary, floral note is orange flower, which is usually quite fresh itself.

Beyond the orange flower, the other notes include vanilla, myrrh, coconut, and cacao. The result is a sweet, slightly powdery floral mix.

Undoubtedly it leans feminine, but as with, say, Tom Ford Shanghai Lily, since it's sufficiently fresh and sweet, it's nonetheless pleasant enough for some men to wear.

Performance is strong, as with most Profumums. It reminds me a bit of Meringa, the Osswald boutique exclusive, in their shared sweetness and dominant note of orange flower. They're definitely related, though Meringa is creamier and appropriately more like meringue, while Batitto d'Ali has the coconut side.

An interesting blend but not one I'd likely buy a full bottle of Battito d'Ali---still, another solid entry from Profumum.

7 out of 10
11th April, 2017

Monserrat by Bruno Fazzolari

Bruno Fazzolari's Monserrat is another mostly-fresh entry with an apricot dominance and contributions from jasmine and citrus, specifically grapefruit. Neither committed to the fruity nor the strictly citrus, it's a blend that indubitably seems geared toward warm weather wearing but does't fall into the citrus-dominant lot. For me, it mainly comes down to whether the wearer likes apricot or not, as it's the standout for me, with the jasmine and grapefruit serving familiarly and well-blended enough in the background. I'm not a huge fan of apricot but I'm pleased with its tempered use in Monserrat.

Still, this is not a fragrance I would reach for much, even if I had a free bottle. Five still remains the preeminent warm weather option of the line, over Monserrat and Room 237. Monserrat was a nice try, as usual, and not a terrible performer, though certainly not meriting the price ($110 for 30ml, same as the others) on performance; you'd really need to love the scent in order to buy it.

6 out of 10

10th April, 2017

Lampblack by Bruno Fazzolari

Lampblack seems to be Bruno Fazzolari's most celebrated release, and so in purchasing the Portfolio sample set, I was most looking forward to trying out.

It lives up to the darkness of its name, perhaps best summarized as an "inky vetiver." I get a damp, earthy quality from it, but admittedly something also seemingly synthetic in the inky vein. I don't detect too many of the listed notes---citrus at the onset, sure, and maybe some pepper, but not benzoin or any of the other items; granted, some of the notes are probably imaginary as with Imaginary Authors.

Certainly geared more toward cold weather but not prohibitively dense for warm weather wearing, especially at night, Lampblack is strong but not overwhelming, consistent with what I'm sensing is a trend of good projection but great longevity from Bruno Fazzolari's line.

I'm not in love with it but I do like it more than I generally like vetiver-dominant fragrances, and it makes for an intriguing entry in the line.

7 out of 10
06th April, 2017

Room 237 by Bruno Fazzolari

Bruno Fazzolari Room 237 is, like Five, clearly geared toward warm weather wearing, but unlike Five, Room 237 is deliberately synthetic and geared toward a sort of bathroom cleaner vibe, and not in a very appealing way.

Still, I'm more or less ambivalent toward Room 237, as, while there are synthetic elements to it, there are components that seem to be genuine citrus, floral, and other plants, though indistinct enough to be pretty uninteresting.

I can't see the appeal, really, even from a generic standpoint, but at the same time I don't find it unpleasant. I can't say I share the hate for it that many do, too, as it doesn't project well enough to even bring out its bad side, if it has one.

Probably not worth smelling unless you get the Portfolio Set like I did. Onto the next.

6 out of 10
05th April, 2017

Five by Bruno Fazzolari

Five is my first try from Bruno Fazzolari and it does not disappoint. A citrus/herbal blend, a little bit like a traditional cologne, but modernized with the herbal side of rosemary. Neither boastful nor shy, neither too fleeting nor too aromatic, Five is a composition that strikes a a pleasant balance seldom achieved by fragrances that seem geared toward warm weather.

The citrus is definitely a blended citrus, without the dominance of any one fruit, a harmony of orange and lemon. I'm often a fan of the way that petitgrain mixes with citrus and Five is no exception, as the earthy, wheaty quality of petitgrain contrasts the very fresh citrus blend poignantly, with rosemary lingering in the background to give an herbal feel that isn't overwhelmingly herbal.

Five performs pretty well, as well, giving hours of decent projection and hours more as a skin scent, so certainly above the norm for a warm weather EDP. Still, its full bottle pricing of $110 for 30ml is a bit steep, so this one I' need to sleep on and try some more before stomaching the pricing.

8 out of 10
04th April, 2017

Gucci Intense Oud by Gucci

Gucci Intense Oud is a good release, a designer-priced (especially on the grey market) oud/incense offering with niche quality.

Leather is listed in the mix but I don't get it, mainly just the olibanum and oud, with some woody notes as well, perhaps cedar or oak.

Overall, there's not much to it, and its elegance is in that simplicity. If there IS leather, it's hardly all that animalic, but rather a smooth contributor to an otherwise smooth blend of incense and oud.

The closest comparison I can make is to the more refined By Kilian Incense Oud, which is undoubtedly smoother yet substantially more expensive at retail at ($395 for 50ml) than Gucci Intense Oud's pricing on Notino of $90 for 90ml.

While it's not all that daring or complex, I concede that it's unusual to find a fragrance so well put-together at designer pricing.

Performance is very good overall, both in terms of projection and longevity.

Not one I'd necessarily buy since I own By Kilian Incense Oud, but one I'd surely consider.

8 out of 10
03rd April, 2017

Antidote by Viktor & Rolf

I thought I'd never smelled Viktor & Rolf Antidote but upon obtaining a decant of an older batch just recently, I've remembered that this is something I do recall from a decade ago, and it's phenomenal, mysterious, and signature scent worthy. Perhaps some nostalgia, even from a decade ago, makes me want to keep smelling it over and over again, but it's likely the combination of notes that hits a few areas just right.

The note listing is immense, so I'd mainly hone in a few accords: the freshness of the lavender, soft woodiness of the cedar, and sharpness of the mint that adds a little bit of an edge to an otherwise smooth and unassuming mixture. I

Antidote is classic, vaguely in the barbershop fougere sort of way, a little closer to Chanel Pour Monsieur EDT than some of the other kin, but still in separate territory, a composition somehow unlike those yet reminiscent of the same type of gentleman that might wear it.

Performance is quite stellar for an EDT, with quite strong projection and longevity.

Really a superb blend, an instant favorite and one that I hope to acquire.

9 out of 10
31st March, 2017

Layton by Parfums de Marly

One of the more recent releases from Parfums De Marly, Layton, seems to very popular, and I can see why, it's quite easy-to-wear and pleasing, a fresh spicy mix that leads with a strong mix of apple and lavender, giving way to floral heart and woody pepper base.

I like the apple at the beginning and the pepper at the end the most, those notes standing out most prominently, though I'm a little disappointed that the apple that's so front-and-center in the opening didn't last a bit longer into the dry down, but that's part of its charm, that it becomes a little more woody and even generic in the dry down.

To me, this is a very agreeable mix, stereotypically masculine but plausibly unisex, and a decent performer. Nothing shocking, but a safe, reliable, middle-of-the-road scent that is intriguing enough to be worth a little more, but probably not even the discounted price of $194 for 125ml on Notino, in my opinion.

A good performer, as well, average or slightly above average for an EDP, with medium projection and very good longevity.

7 out of 10
29th March, 2017
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Galloway by Parfums de Marly

I definitely agree that Parfums de Marly Galloway, while not having exactly the same note breakdown, smells curiously like Lalique White, which is generally a fine compliment. Galloway is sophisticated and proper, nicely done, and a better perform that Lalique White, almost indisputably. However, for its increased pricing of about $160 for 125ml on Notino, Galloway is simply too untenably pricey in contrast to Lalique White, for the same volume at an eighth of the cost of Galloway.

Overall, Galloway is nice, an inoffensive combination of citrus, pepper, and musk that works for all genders in all seasons, but it's simply not enough of a standout (and too eerily similar to Lalique White) to merit a lot of consideration on its own, despite the fact that others will see less of a similarity. Judge for yourselves, though!

7 out of 10
28th March, 2017

Darley by Parfums de Marly

Parfums de Marly Darley is one of the less-celebrated members of the house, and the likeness to Jean Paul Gaultier Le Male is undoubtedly part of the reason that Darley gets less glory. Darley isn't particularly daring.

Still, it's very pleasant and agreeable, as a citrus/mint opening gives way to a floral heart (rose, orange blossom, jasmine, rosemary) and a woody dry down of sandalwood and guaiac, primarily. It has that nutty/fizzy edge to it like Le Male without the almond itself.

Darley is far more a Le Male clone than Profumum Antico Caruso, as many accuse the latter of this but I think Darley accomplishes the feat of paying tribute to Le Male far better than AC. Both, though, are better than Le Male, and Darley certainly feels a little more sophisticated in that it is not quite as sweet as Le Male.

Performance is decent, about moderate on project but well above average on longevity.

Darley is a worthy scent but even at discounted pricing on the secondary market ($151 for 125ml on Notino), I'd be hard-pressed to want to buy a full-bottle.

7 out of 10
27th March, 2017

Chypre Palatin by MDCI

Parfums MDCI Chypre Palatin is a heavy chypre with a strong mix of lavender and labdanum in the opening, giving it a sharp edge from the onset, the dry down giving way to a floral heart of iris, rose, and gardenia, and finally a hodgepodge of base notes, most of which I don't detect at all, the standouts of which for me are the oakmoss and castoreum, fostering a woody and animalic combination. I barely detect any sweetness at all that one might expect from vanilla or benzoin.

Chypre Palatin leans masculine, as one might expect, but it's unisex enough that women could enjoy it too---it has a classic-enough appeal for both genders.

It's a good performer, ideal for cold weather, as it might simply be too cloying in the summer heat. It projects very strongly for about an hour and then has modest projection for several hours thereafter.

A nice entry but one that doesn't quite fit in with my ideal type of chypre, so not one I'll be pursuing further.

7 out of 10
24th March, 2017

Le Barbier de Tangier by MDCI

Parfums MDCI Le Barbier de Tangier is a more agreeable barbershop scent than Invasion Barbare, in my opinion, but lacks the daring elements to which many are drawn by Invasion Barbare.

The easiest way of classifying the difference is to say that LBDT is lighter and cleaner, and therefore less potentially offensive than IB.

LBDT is more citrus-intensive at the opening and fresher in the dry down, contra the heavy dose of patchouli I get out of IB in its dry down.

Think citrus and lavender, giving way to petigrain and woods, mainly. I hardly get any apple or patchouli in the heart but this might have something to do with its performance, which isn't very strong.

LBDT is safe, agreeable, but uninspiring, but I'd nonetheless aver that I like and would wear the scent, and would even buy a bottle if it were extremely lower in price, as $250 for 75ml is far too steep for a scent that's not terribly interesting, not a great performer, and vaguely resembles cheaper barbershop counterparts.

7 out of 10

23rd March, 2017

Velvet Exotic Leather by Dolce & Gabbana

My second try from the high-end Dolce & Gabbana Velvet line (after Velvet Desert Oud), Velvet Exotic Leather is a bright, interesting mix of leather, fruity accords that are probably yielded mostly by the juniper and perhaps the labdanum, some sweetness (perhaps attributed to the rum, even), as well as some noticeable incense that comes off quite spicy rather than smoky.

The leather itself isn't particularly dominant but rather part of a reasonably-balanced ensemble, so it's not overly animalic, despite the alleged presence of clary sage, which can often exacerbate some of the dirtiness of a composition. Rather, it's quite sweet overall, not specifically boozy but there's something sweet about it that's not strictly the juniper, so I credit that to the rum. The note combination is odd, though--there's lavender, allegedly, but I wouldn't say it's very floral or fresh, either.

It seems like a solid performer, with medium/high projection and longevity. It ought to work for men and women alike, and is surely cold-weather-leaning while at the same time perhaps being acceptable in some warm weather situations if applied lightly. My inclination with leather and incense is to generally avoid them in the summer except under unusual circumstances.

The 50ml EDP bottle retails for $230 but is available on Notino at $130, and the latter price seems more appropriate, given that for a 50ml bottle, it doesn't dazzle like its similarly-priced counterpart brands like Tom Ford Private Blend or By Kilian.

It's a nice fragrance and a decant that I'll hang on to but not one I'll likely buy even at the secondary market pricing. It works well, but fails to really impress me, though it's agreeable enough.

7 out of 10
22nd March, 2017

1270 by Frapin

Frapin 1270 is agreeable and pleasant, and, if cheaper, one I'd gravitate toward but it suffers from being a little uninspiring.

Don't get me wrong---I like its sweetness, a mix of honeyed nuts, cocoa, and seemingly a variety of fruit---but its performance is just so limited. As it dries down into a bed of woods and leather, it becomes a little bit less of a sweet gourmand and more of a balanced fragrance that, while still much like fruity baked goods, nonetheless comes back to a more familiar place with some traditional cold weather elements.

Its inspiration is cognac, and I have to say upon first wearing that it doesn't strike me as especially boozy but far more of the sweet and fruity mix. The opening was more akin to Profumum Acqua e Zucchero (sweet, fruity water) and the dry down is more like a sweet tobacco/incense.

I like a bit, but it's difficult to enjoy a lot in colder weather when it doesn't project.

7 out of 10
21st March, 2017

Ambre Russe by Parfum d'Empire

I'd heard Parfum d'Empire Ambre Russe hyped pretty thoroughly and as a growing fan of amber-dominant scents, it's easier to be skeptical when the bar is set so high, but Ambre Russe lives up to the hype and more, being a slightly unconventional amber that nevertheless hits on a lot of great spots.

An unorthodox but seemingly thorough note lineup of vodka, champagne, leather, incense, cumin, coriander, vanilla, and ambergris, with the ambergris providing the name. The most dominant accords are the sweet liquor and vanilla combined with incense and leather, fostering a sweet, boozy, dark, smoky concoction that's quite pleasant while not being too sweet.

It's important to note that the ambergris doesn't provide the full amber experience (of a creamy, gourmand-like amber) but rather the animalic side of the substance. And the coriander and cumin combine to yield an animalic spiciness of their own, though all of animalic and spicy sides to the fragrance are subservient to the sweet and boozy.

Performance is quite good, with excellent longevity and well above average projection for hours for a niche EDP, and at $145 for 100ml (seemingly only available via Luckyscent in the US), it's worthwhile in my book and one that is surely on my list of future acquisitions, perhaps for the coming autumn. It's not quite as exceptional as my very favorite amber-dominant fragrances, Tom Ford Amber Absolute and Dior Mitzah, but it's right up there in the next tier down.

8 out of 10
20th March, 2017

Isparta 26 by Parfumerie Generale

My first try from Parfumerie Generale, Isparta came highly recommended from the online fragrance community.

Rose is the predominant aspect of both the opening and dry down, and it's pleasant, and sweetly accompanied by the red berries in the opening that color it well without giving it a dessert- or jammy-like sweetness. It's a fruity yet reserved sweetness.

I'm fortunate to not to be overwhelmed by the patchouli in the dry down, as I mainly get a combination of benzoin, incense, and balsam. So the overall experience, while rose-dominant, is characterized by the red berry mix at the opening, as the note breakdown indicates, followed by a resinous, woody dry down for the most part. Isparta cleverly walks the line between sophisticated and playful, as I might enjoying wearing this out to a party as much as I would sitting around the house.

At $150 for 50ml, this is a nice fragrance but I'm not sure it's completely worthwhile, given that its performance is very good on longevity but not so much on projection, though for that reason, it has yearround wearability. Isparta is also pretty much a unisex fragrance, with redeeming elements that work for men and women alike.

A clear winner, with the only variable holding me back from proverbially "adding it to my list" being the performance:price ratio.

8 out of 10
13th March, 2017

Rosenthal by Hendley Perfumes

Hendley's Rosenthal make me initial think of rose, of course, and rose factors in prominently to the opening with iris, creating a certain sharpness to start that for me, felt like a bit of a turn off, but the dry down reveals a lot more character, an incense/sandalwood blend with the rose that almost fosters a coffee-like vibe, a grainy, earthy familiarity and comfort that takes what was sharp at the opening and brings it home very effectively.

It contrasts the many rose/oud blends by the absence of the latter. The incense/sandalwood mix in Rosenthal is much smoother than the vast majority of ouds that I've smelled in concert with rose.

Performance is very good, and applicability is mostly leaning to cold weather, though it's not overbearing to the point that it couldn't function in warm weather. It's fairly unisex, as well, not such a delicate or feminine rose, especially in concert with the incense and sandalwood.

At $180 for 50ml, pricing is decently steep, and with a rose market already replete with contemporary entries, it may be a tough sell, but I imagine for some, Rosenthal might be just want they want out of a rose fragrance.

7 out of 10
09th March, 2017

Fields of Rubus by Kerosene

Fields of Rubus is one of seemingly many Kerosene offerings that is a bit controversial and divisive, though from the notes breakdown, I was optimistic I'd have a good shot of liking this one.

The fruit mix of raspberry and apple is provocative, and mixing in tobacco, woods, and vanilla makes for a harmonious group, leaning toward cold weather usage, but the patchouli factors in a bit too heavily for me to readily enjoy the blend.

One has to be able to embrace the patchouli side to embrace the fragrance, but fans of patchouli should fine this a fun, fruity mix.

Performance is decent, applicability is unisex, probably year-round, though I'd gravitate toward using it in the cold weather since the tobacco and patchouli factor in heavily.

This one would take but a push, a reduction of patchouli, for me to perhaps like it to the point I'd want to try it some more, but I'm already pretty much done with it after one usage. It's just above average, only slightly better than a fragrance I might never want to smell again.

6 out of 10
08th March, 2017

Oudh Infini by Parfums Dusita

The oud in the opening and the civet, presumably synthetic, in the dry down make Dusita Oudh Infini utterly animalic on my skin, and not in a good way.

I can't really enjoy or detect any other notes due to the overwhelming scent that is a combination of bad body odor and feces.

In fairness, I'm usually not a leather fan though there are many that I like, and animalic scents are a category that I find even more difficult to enjoy, and Oudh Infini is animalic in the extreme category of any that I've tried.

Certainly this is only for those lovers of animalic oud, and apply carefully, as this may be a scrubber for you like it is for me. Disappointed in how far they pushed the envelope here. Not for the faint of heart!

1 out of 10
07th March, 2017

Issara by Parfums Dusita

Issara is the most discussed of the relatively new house of Dusita. Described as a fougere, but notably missing the signature note of lavender, Issara is mainly woody, with spicy and resinous elements in the background.

I unfortunately don't detect much of the sage or pine that might otherwise give Issara some interesting nuances from the onset. The oakmoss (synthetic of course) and musk could surely be part of the drydown, as the opening is ever so slightly sharper than the bottom, but I can't get a lot of the neat stuff in between like coumarin. Vetiver is ever so slightly part of the mix, providing the dirtiness that I might be mistaking for a smoky sort of incense.

The fragrance I easily liken Issara to is Eau Des Baux by L'Occitane, a relatively straightforward blend of vanilla, cedar, and incense that is nonetheless superbly blended to be an infinitely wearable option in cold weather. Issara is certainly a bit more complex but its nuances are not overt enough to distinguish sufficently from Eau Des Baux, at least upon first wearing with a modest application from a sample vial. Still, at $295 for 50ml extrait, it's discouraging that I might need to apply quite a bit of perfume in order to enjoy its full character. Extraits are often said to project more modestly than EDPs, though my experience with this variance is inconsistent, but I can at least argue that for that pricing, irrespective of concentration, I'd expect more than the modest projection I've observed with Issara. Its longevity seems above average, though, as it's remained consistent for the hours I've worn it.

A very nice fragrance, but not one I can fathom spending hundreds.

8 out of 10
06th March, 2017

Gris Montaigne by Christian Dior

Dior Gris Montaigne is a sharp, powdery, floral. I definitely detect something floral beyond the rose in the note breakdown, but I can't emphasize enough that it is very powdery and I'm not sure why, as there's no iris or tonka, for example. Still, there's a freshness of bergamot but a heavy-handed use of rose in the opening and heart.

Patchouli comes out more the dry down in concert with some sandalwood and cedar to smooth things over, and I'm afraid I don't get any amber out of this, even after several hours on skin.

Certainly Gris Montaigne is mainly feminine-leaning, but I'm sure plenty of men would be comfortable pulling this off. For me, though, it's not my type of powdery fragrance, as I tend to be pretty selective on how much powder I'll tolerate and when. I think it would be fine for most women, though.

Performance is very good, and overall this leans slightly to cold weather but it could be year-round, just not viable for the extreme heat.

Again, might be nice for women and some men but not a winner on my skin.

6 out of 10
03rd March, 2017

Antico Caruso by Profumum

Profumum Antico Caruso is advertised and purported to be a classic men's scent, not necessarily a fougere but rather a soapy/citrus/woody blend. Fresh and tangy, yet woody and serene, sophisticated and classic. Certainly vaguely in the vicinity of the barbershop type of scent but without any lavender. And the soapiness isn't via neroli, apparently, just the combination of orange blossom and lemon,

The lemon and orange blossom are certainly detectable at the top but remain part of the mix in the dry down, which exposes the almond, sandalwood and amber, though I don't get much amber.

Almond, to me, is always a note I have a difficult time putting my finger on. In the case of Antico Caruso, the almond blends in pretty seamless with the other elements, so for me it isn't such a burst of almond as it is a citrus/floral/woody blend with hints of almond, and that's probably a good overall thing if you're not crazy about almond, as you might need to be to enjoy, say, Confetto, also by Profumum.

I imagine some women could pull this off but this seems overwhelmingly to be oriented toward men, and not very young men, not that it smells of an old man, but rather that I could see it being more of an acquired test, a reserved but still-powerful entry.

Comparisons to JPG Le Male, which I've seen from a couple of sources, are fair but only in a vague, abstract sense---the note breakdowns between LM and AC are quite different and upon application they're really quite different enough.

Performance is mostly up to Profumum's standard power but while superb on longevity, it's not quite as substantial in the projection category, as the bar is set pretty high by the house. Still, a great classic men's scent that should be sampled by all men.

8 out of 10
02nd March, 2017

Acqua e Zucchero by Profumum

Acqua e Zucchero is an unusual composition, but that's becoming normal for Profumum, that seems to artistically and boldly go where many fragrance houses seem not to, and AEZ is no exception, pushing the boundaries on what I expect fragrance to be, and what I expect to like.

As usual, Profumum's note breakdown is pretty limited, at least in terms of what they disclose, so it's simply listed as vanilla, orange blossom, and some mix of fruit (berries, red fruit, forest fruit, something to that effect).

It's sweet and vanilla-laden but light and fresh enough to be worn in warm weather. Not light as in weak on performance, to be clear, as it's still up to Profumum's standard performance that is very strong, the extreme of most houses.

I'm not familiar with the Pink Sugar fragrance to which many seem to liken AEZ, but I'll offer that it doesn't smell of cotton candy to me, though some seem to think that's case. It's far more natural-smelling to me than cotton candy specifically or confections in general.

Overall, it's a very pleasant scent that's unusually productive, not in my typical wheelhouse, but it's strong in several categories---performance (as expected), versatility, creativity, and fun.

8 out of 10
01st March, 2017

Au Coeur du Desért by Tauer

The common "desert" name of course suggests that Tauer Au Coeur du Desert is similar to L'Air du Desert Marocain, and it's largely a safe bet that if you like one, you'd like the other, and vice versa.

I find ACDD a bit drier, a bit stronger (which makes sense, due to the increased concentration), and less sweet and a bit less inviting. Artistic and challenging, but less wearable, ACDD involves the same dry amber accord that dominates LDDM but applies more spices and woods, just not the exact same coriander accord that factors in so strongly into LDDM.

Performance seems fine--equal to if not better than LDDM--so it should definitely be tried by fans of LDDM, and most would benefit from trying it out if they could anyway as it's an interesting composition even though, like LDDM, it's not quite for me.

6 out of 10
27th February, 2017

Dolce Acqua by Profumum

Profumum Dolce Aqcua is accurately, as its name suggests, "sweet water," taking the sweet almond/vanilla mix found in Confetto and instead of making it powdery, it's semi fresh and aquatic in Dolce Acqua. The tonka seems minimal in Dolce Acqua so it's more nutty than powdery. It's sweet, creamy, leaning toward a rich gourmand while at the same time not smelling like baked goods---certainly closer to candy and confection.

It's the type of sweetness I find a little confounding, though, as it's quite possible that I'm simply not a huge fan of almond, as I know I love vanilla.

I see this, like Confetto, as better-suited for women, though obviously men like myself that like gourmands could easily like this, even though it's not particularly a hit with me. Heliotrope certainly makes this lean toward women, though I find the coconut perfectly unisex.

Still, the quality is obvious and it blatantly achieves what its name suggests, a sweet aquatic that is not too heavy. Performance is good, and it has the same standard pricing as other Profumum offerings. Not one I'll likely smell again but it's an honest name and some will understandably love it.

6 out of 10
24th February, 2017