Perfume Reviews

Reviews by Buzzlepuff

Total Reviews: 502

Patch Flash by Tauerville

Tauerville Patch Flash is a truly original take on a patchouli fragrance. This is no hippie patchouli as it is well blended with warm and smooth ingredients. The patchouli has a grassy aged old time patchouli aroma, noticeable mostly at the opening and this combines with dry spiced amber which contributes to a cool/warm chord combination that has nice depth but is also smooth almost like a polished leather. Reminds me slightly of LM Patchouli Boheme, but really this is a unique patchouli blend. The scent is agreeable to wear, mildly addictive and has me returning to my bottle for more wearing time. There is a bit of adventure in wearing something like this. The best flash yet from Taurville.
27th November, 2017

Oud Wood Intense by Tom Ford

Oud Wood Intense is a dark oud wood with subtle spices, tobacco and leafy character and a charcoal dust aroma all within the opening. This melange evolves into a dark dry oudish leather which stays present in one form or another throughout. The oud is subtle and shrouded in birch tar which gives a smoldering leathery backdrop. Because of its namesake - Oud Wood - I am surprised how dark, almost burnt, Oud Wood Intense becomes. Very well blended, the aromas intertwine and appear from within as if from inner depths. This fragrance is unique and different enough from original Oud Wood with its leather, tobacco and dark quality which might have deserved its own name and identity, but naming things is a separate challenge from creating the scent. Tom Ford continues to impress with his relentless exploration of interesting variations in aromatic niche perfume art.
20th November, 2017 (last edited: 22nd November, 2017)

Portraits : The Uncompromising Sohan by Penhaligon's

The Uncompromising Sohan is a brass eagle capped, 2017 arrival to the Penhalgon's Portraits fragrance series. This bottle is another in Penhaligons collection of rose centric fragrances that pair rose with berries, contrasted with saffron, pink pepper, vetiver, and mellowed with amber and oud. The variety of ways to spice up and incense a rose masculine perfume dates back to the original, 1872 Hammam Bouquet Penhaligon's that started the concept. Today Penhaligon's has many male rose beauties that are tuned slightly different from one another, filling the spectrum from soft subtlety to rich bold and savory. The variety goes from Savoy Steam (mild), Something About the Duke (civil spices), Hammam Bouquet (fruity rose oriental), Halfeti (spice trader, woody), As Sawira (mystical) and Uncompromising Sohan - very bold, expressive, uncompromising but pleasant.

Uncompromising Sohan is an Arabic styled accord of opulent jammy rose essence sharpened with saffron and pink pepper, resting on a warm wizened woods base of Laotian Oud, vetiver and sandalwood. This rose combination soars to the brighter side of the Arabic incense rose range but retires to a mellow but crisp assuring base. It is an excellent fagrance that is bold, long lasting and contains a wide range of tonal resonance from soaring formal red rose to sombre good natured mellow rose and woods retirement, from bright start to softer finish. This may not be my most favorite rose saffron oud scent, but it is a very good one.
20th November, 2017
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Mazzolari Oud by Mazzolari

Unfortunately, Mazzolari chose to name this nice masculine "Oud" and because of its title everyone wants to see what wonderful spin Mazzolari will put on the Mazzolari Oud product that they finally released to show "we can do oud too". Big mistake! Just as Lui is not a patchouli fragrance and thankfully named Lui, Oud is not an oud fragrance and it should never have been named as such. It will be and should be critiqued for its average oud performance. The oud plays a nice supporting role and succeeds in this capacity but is not the star of the fragrance. Actually this is a nice masculine scent that has fine blending of woods, leather, carnation and rose for a warm comfortable leather scent that has woody character and many will enjoy wearing. So, this scent is a pleasant daily wear scent that is decent. But, with a name like Mazzolari Oud you had better bring it with the oud, and this late in the oud scene it should be a special oud at that! They didn't and it's not. A good scent, improperly named.
04th November, 2017

Patchouli by Mazzolari

Mazzolari Patchouli is one of the great patchouli fragrances because of its mesmerizing scent profile that revoles, hand to hand and back again through three independent fragrance note players: (1) cool impersonal patchouli, (2) dirty, waxy, honey, (3) warm fuzzy amber - each of these strong notes rely upon the other for context and contrast. It is a reverberating tone that oscillates between dirty-but-cozy amber, and then exotic-but-cold patchouli with the honey as a bridge to connect these cold and warm cousins. The patchouli eventually wins the discussion.
04th November, 2017

Lui by Mazzolari

A classic macho mens fragrance that might burn the hair off your chest, but if applied reasonably offers an alpha male attitude that is dark and ready for action even if it might be dangerous. This is a patchouli, leather and spice scented toolbox necessity type of fragrance. You have to have one of these around for the life of the party attitude. The patchouli is raw, old and wizened in tone as it is slowly absorbed into a saucy leather which still maintains a sharp spice and indolic floral trail. I muse that these exotic flourishes for the Lui leather are due to blackberry musk, saffron and possibly jasmine indole. Overall Lui sports a sharp patchouli and warm leather scent with a personality that is a bit too bold and rowdy until the special moment when you need a kickstart for new adventures.
04th November, 2017

Y by Yves Saint Laurent

Y by Yves Saint Laurent does smell fresh, clean, ready for anything. Saturday morning fresh and carefree. I like this smell but I have smelled this before haven't I? Would it be in the late 1980's with Clairborne for Men or is it CK One, Curve, Curve Chill, Bora Bora Men, Lacoste 12.12 Yellow and Y is oozing into Acqua di Gio territory with that melony freshness. Some of these are better than others and Y is as good as most and possibly just a bit more freshness, less citrus; but why would YSL come out with such a well used and tired scent profile? I am sure that there is some new melony musk aroma chemical that adds special sparkle and is slightly different - but I swear it smells just like Clairborne for Men which can be gotten for around $10 and has long retired from sales. It does smell good, though not very original, generic, but I give it a neutral rating because if you want this type of freshie, this is as good as any of the others like this - just more costly.
14th October, 2017

Versace pour Homme by Versace

Versace Pour Homme when it launched was a revelation of balanced fresh clean notes that are engineered to give that fresh but stylish approach that a fashionable setting requires. In the last decade it has opened the door for a host of emulators of the precise but pure pale blue balance, however, the venerable Versace PH has weathered the onslaught from the Chanels, Lacostes, Boss, D&Gs, Mont Blancs, etc. and is still standing tall, solid as ever to represent the finest of light blue synthetic freshness and buttoned up decorum. Still have my bottle and it works great for that everyday, consistently anonymous but hopeful engagement with the generic post modern urban situation.
09th October, 2017

Armani Privé Ambre Eccentrico by Giorgio Armani

This is Armani's gourmand scent, a muddled confusion. Yes it is an amber but the opening smells like something edible and very sweet - amber made with simple syrup? It could be peaches heavily spiced in syrup, or sticky buns with lots of cinnamon. People who like gourmand type fragrances might like this but all others - not. It is just too sweet. Why not contrast these sweet notes with wood smoke or incense smoke for balance as is done with PG Aomassai or Serge Lutens Jeaux de Peau. This is not my favorite gourmand scent.
09th September, 2017

Black Gemstone by Stéphane Humbert Lucas 777

True to its name, Stephane Humbert Lucas Black Gemstone is coal black or charcoal grey with a flinty mineral sparkle that sets a tone from the very start. This feels dangerous! A slight black tea smoke with a resinous tar darkness evolves during the mid notes. The resinous myrrh, teak wood which is a very dark wood resin and olibanum roil in the dark smokiness. The dry powdery tonka base adds a bit of sparkle to the darkness hinting at gunpowder. The tonka adds an odd sweetness to the charcoal and gives it a licorice like sticky darkness without being gourmand at all. This unexpected use of powder sweet tones in the base is a typical SHL 777 stroke that happens to civilize his otherwise dark and brooding orientals such as Taklamakken, Qom Chilom and Soleil de Jeddah. I like Black Gemstone quite a bit for its subtlety with darkness and powder for a mysterious and centering fragrance.
07th September, 2017 (last edited: 10th December, 2017)

Halfeti by Penhaligon's

A refreshing but spicy roses, woods and dry leather barbershop fougere style fragrance straight from the shipping receiving docks where Turkish spice traders unload their wares. Yes, there are dark Halfeti roses plus green lavenders added to a Ras-al-Hanout spice blend of saffron, cumin, nutmeg, cardamom and cinnamon - but nicely done and layered over tonka, amber, woods, patchouli, oud, and leather base notes.

At it's simplest this is a barbershop fougere fragrance warmed with some dark rose, a peppery spice array stirred and aged into a warm woods base. This is almost an incense, but definitely a rich masculine scent that derives an influence from Turkish trade routes on the high seas. This is not an oud fragrance or a saffron rose fragrance, although it has those things in it as well. I find Halfet to be a refreshing fougere with prickly spices and warm woods along with a creamy warmth from rose and amber made to splash on skin after a good clean up. I like this scent much more when I don't try to overthink it or categorize the fragrance for more than what it might be. It smells good. I think this is one of Penhaligon's best new fragrances and appropriately illustrates historical and cultural discovery through trade in far away and exotic ports of call. A very Penhaligon's theme and well done.
04th September, 2017

Tango by Masque

Tango is a sultry and rich, exotic amber that reveals itself in small quick unfolding bites of rose, labdanum, jasmine sambac, patchouli, frankincense, morrocain spice and then glides to a soft finish on benzoin and musk. Tango opens the door to the party with the boldness of Mazzolari Lui or Rundholz '68, then retreats to the quieter side ending in softness and comfort. Tango is lively, but easy to live with. Nice one!
24th August, 2017

Siberian Musk by Areej le Doré

I am a little intimidated writing a review for a fragrance which has a tribe of such enthusiastically vocal and raging fans. See:é-The-Official-Discussion-Thread, and Claire's review at: Much has been written on this fragrance as well as the other Areej le Dore perfumes and heaps of praise have been laid at the doorstep of this artisanal perfumer. Rightly so! I am a fan, a big fan, however; I write these words cautiously because I am sure I will offend others who are even bigger supporters of Russian Adam and Areej le Dore and there are opinions that vary on his work which is as it should be for any bold artistic statement.

The perfumer who is Areej le Dore's creator goes under the artist working name, Russian Adam, and he has an extensive history in distilling oud oils under the brand name Feel Oud, and for other brands as well located in various southeast asian oud of origin countries and also uses unique techniques and home assembled formulas for making hydrosols or infusions and distillations from natural perfumery products to use in the final blending and creation of his perfumes. Due to this individualistic process there is much variability and the perfumes have a very high artisanal value and batch variations are a fact of the process. So, a bottle of Siberian Musk obtained before or after mine, might be more, or less floral, stronger or not so in deer musk, or heavier in amber base note or some combination of these variables. My review is based upon the bottles I have purchased directly from the maker and from reading other reviews I am sure that there may be variations from bottle to bottle.

Siberian Musk appears to be assembled from the finest natural materials and some are very difficult to locate primary ingredients. The quality of the materials shines brightly. The top notes are a delicate but very high pitched citrus lime and mandarin juicy sweet but tart elevated green notes which have a noticeable pinene background. This very high pitched, light citrus descends through a multicolored swirl of florals that display a flourish of colors and are identifiable as the mercurial dancing floral aroma of deer musk infused with orange blossom. This is a floral crescendo of exotic deer musk aroma that moves from crisp limes and mandarin tartness through orange blossom, anchored by earthy green pine resins, galbanum and vetiver. There is a green tone to the floral character of this musk fragrance but the blending is subtle and sublime and the musk is quite light. The base has a very soft use of amber and other wood notes for grounding but is hardly noticeable as woods or anything other than a point of punctuation. The overall aroma of Siberian Musk is incredibly light but very active floral musk with green notes that reach upward through flourishes of orange blossom and deer musk creating paisley patterns of aromatic presence. There is an exuberance and intensity but it is held neatly within resinous boundaries with very little powder which is unusual for a musk scent. The presence of deer musk is very slight in the bottle I received. I have been the owner of a precious bottle of deer musk raw extraction - in years past - almost nuclear in potency musk, and I realize that the amount of musk used in this preparation is very judiciously applied, but also delicately appropriate for this scent.

Overall, Siberian Musk is a work of precise balance with an
outgoing extrovert personality but maintains a nearly weightless floral outlined deer musk heart note. This is not a heavy musk, and not animalic but seems to always maintain a lighter than air dancing attitude. Although it is unisex I can see where Siberian Musk might appeal to feminine nature, although any man can appreciate this as an artistic statement. Think bold paisley contrasts and flourishes, an expression of pure joy!
21st August, 2017 (last edited: 18th September, 2017)
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Oud Zen by Areej le Doré

Oud Zen is a smokey woods fragrance that is raw and resinous at opening and very spicy with a sandpaper textured saffron attar that takes complete control of the woods aroma and is aggressive in its boldness. As the fragrance evolves, subtleties of sandalwood and slight hints of agarwood emerge softening and carving down the hard edges of the dangerous smoked wild side of this resinous wood. Castoreum more than Civet (don't smell civet) adds a salty dryness to the base and so the woods receive a sueded leathery surface, but still it is all wood here. After hours on skin the resins of the woods loose their pinene character and become more a soft easy Indian oudh still with strong mixed wood and light sandalwood character. When I think of Zen I envision a gentle surrendered, "no mind" or zen mind quality, peaceful gardens; but I really don't see those qualities in this perfume so I object to the name a bit. Oud Zen reminds me more of an out of control jaunt careening down a wild mountain forest pathway threatening disaster at every turn but slowly leveling out onto a dry dusty plane. The zen outcome of this rough ride signals good fortune awaiting the wearer of Oud Zen.
21st August, 2017

Ottoman Empire by Areej le Doré

There are lots of notes listed and Ottoman Empire is different almost every time I wear it so there is an unsettling feel about it for me. But I I think it is important to faithfully describe what I smell to give some guidance for others who may be considering purchasing a sample or bottle. As with most artisanal perfumes there are batch variations so I advise sampling before buying.

Ottoman Empire comes down to three basic movements or essential activities that interplay within the scent in a separate but equal way. These are: (1) Rose essence, (2) Saffron attar, (3) Amber/Oud/Myrrh. I combine amber, oud and myrrh because the amber base described as "Crude Amber Resin" to my nose gathers all of the similar qualities of oud, myrrh and dark amber notes unto itself into a thicket of chunky, densely compact amber woods. This Amber base is such a prominent part of the scent that it becomes the essential character of Ottoman Empire, at least to me. I smell the rose at the opening but to smell it after that you must pull back some distance because the rose is so light and ethereal, even though quite beautiful, it is separated from the central theme of the scent like a auric cloud resting gently above the physicality of Ottoman Empire which does battle on firm ground below. Perhaps the rose needs more of a bridge to the saffron attar or amber? The myrrh infused amber has a slight but noticeable oud component and as I described above feels like a thicket of dense brown amber/myrrh/oud.

Then there is the saffron attar. Shooting through the brown thicket of amber darkness are shocks of bright saffron attar. The saffron as an attar is already assembled tightly and strongly bound to other attar ingredients of sandalwood, patchouli, some florals - jasmine, etc.? and stays within its saffron attar identity. This is a good thing as it makes a bold statement and I really like saffron attar. The saffron does not blend with the rose into a rose/saffron like so many saffron rose perfumes accomplish, and while that is a nice note combination, the saffron here retains a saffron attar sharpness and shoots through the density of the amber body of the fragrance with distinct saffron attar precision. It is almost as if thee perfume is an emulsion of parts rather than a blend of notes.

In short this is a 3 part fragrance of (1) amber/myrrh/oud dense resinous mass, along with (2) golden shocks of saffron evenly dispersed throughout, (3) covered in a halo of radiating rose which after the opening does get lost in the outer orbital layer. The three elements keep their separateness allowing the wearer to occasionally find bits of each but maintain their unity through a quantum attraction of sorts. I like Ottoman Empire, but there is something in the fragrance that is awaiting resolution and this keeps me from giving it top marks. It is in the 7 of 10 star category by my taste. I greatly enjoy rose essence, and saffron attar is a favorite, but the amber base is too dense for my taste. The parts do not merge or bridge very well to each other. Overall the perfume is quite an accomplishment and I do like it but it feels like a work in progress to me.
21st August, 2017

Oumma by Stéphane Humbert Lucas 777

A dark rose, smoke, incense and oud fragrance is Oumma. This is the "real" Black Aoud - sorry the name is taken, but Oumma is a unique fragrance nonetheless. The dark character which hints at hidden mysteries is an unstated ingredient in the presence which has a healing, redemptive quality from smokey cade oil, dark rose essence with warm oud oil blended with earthy nagarmotha root oil which is is an ayurvedic healing plant. The notes listed elsewhere are more accurate: Egyptian jasmine, Moroccan rose, Peruvian balsam, balsam tolu, ashes of cade, Burmese oud, nagarmotha. The cade and nagarmotha ground the powerful rose/oud of this fragrance offering a unique quality I've not seen anywhere else. Excellence! Is it worth the extraordinary price? There are more costly and less costly fragrances of excellence. The ingredients are fine, but what price do you put on inspiration born from years of life experience that gives rise to a creation of such a thing?
20th August, 2017 (last edited: 24th August, 2017)

Legend by Montblanc

Unlike some other reviewers of Legend, I like the dry down over the opening notes. Silvery, polished, oceanic, ozonic - its a very well done fragrance that is in a similar style as Versace Homme Eau Fraiche or an aquatic version of Bleu de Chanel. In fact if Bleu de Chanel were to make an "Aquatic" version it might smell like this one. Opening notes have a synthetic and over done hard brightness that causes some repulsion, but as the scent progresses the complementary notes leave behind a soft oceanic minty ghost presence that is the common theme woven throughout. Legend becomes a skin scent but a very long lasting skin scent. The body spray is also good and this scent is very appropriate for a water based all over body spray cleanliness.
15th August, 2017

Entebaa by Rasasi

Quim's review of Entebaa Men by Rassasi pretty much covers everything you need to know on this fragrance but I wanted to repeat my appreciation for how good a fragrance this is. It's Good! It is similar to Al Wisam Day (also Rassasi) kind of like a cousin but the quiet one, less aggressive, more subdued. The base has that Creed "ambergris" musk/ambroxan base note that leaves a sparkling trail of stardust that lasts for hours. The opening citrus notes are chardonnay wine versus oceanic melon of MI or blackberry must of SMW. There is a cinnamon/sandalwood softness in the mid notes that sustains nicely - this versus tea note in SMW. Entebaa Men is one of the greatest fragrances that nobody will every know about because it is too much like other very good ones, has poor name recognition, sparse distribution and not much else that is unique unto itself to get excited about. It is a nice one, good value, if you can find a bottle.
10th August, 2017

Gucci Guilty Absolute pour Homme by Gucci

Opens as a dry subdued, mastic labdanum leather type scent that is strengthened by a mild evergreen blend of cedar, cypress, patchouli and vetiver adding a natural outdoor pine bathroom cleaner feel. A warm musk woods base establishes a final note - Goldenwood - which softens the woody suede with a pleasant conservative, some might think bland, but outdoorsy amber type scent. There is not much variation in this medium toned warm scent from top to bottom. Is this an attempt to replace what was lost when gucci threw out all the Tom Ford scents in '05 losing classic Gucci Pour Homme? No, not quite the same - no incense or danger here. But Absolute is decent and rates a thumbs up, almost.
07th August, 2017 (last edited: 07th September, 2017)

Bibliothèque by Byredo

Bibliotheque has been a very popular candle for Byredo and so this dreamy nostalgic aroma of old books and polished wood and leather is now introduced as a new unisex fragrance. It is a worthy addition. Biblioteque is atmospheric and brings a historical old world reference of smells emerging from a far away and distant past. From a few feet, the smell is warm spiced plums and dried fruit infused polished woods and old leather fragrance which does in fact smell like a trove of leather bound books resting in a highly polished wooden cabinet - a "biblioteque". When you put nose to skin the plums and dried fruit is a bittersweet covering over old leather bound ancient and well used pages. This balsamic fruit leather has a well worn patina of ancient civilizations as opposed to the raspberry freshness of a Tuscan Leather type of fragrance. Byredo has been exploring various tones of leather in their recent fragrance offerings and it is rumored they are preparing to launch into the leather goods business. So this leather fragrance flurry of new intriguing Byredo leathers mixed with varying combinations of dried fruits, indolic florals, tobacco, leather, deep woods has resulted in a concentration of new products from Byredo. Biblioteque is a very bottle worthy resident in the group of new leather interpretations that includes: Rodeo, La Botte, Cuir Obscur, Reine de Nuit, Le Gant, La Selle and Biblioteque. Each is very well done interesting view of Byredo's discovery of new dimensions in leather. This one - Biblioteque - represents the hard to define umami of well used and experienced surfaces - new from the Byredo catalog of fragrance.
05th August, 2017

M/Mink by Byredo

I owe a review to M/Mink by Byredo simply to express my gratitude for keeping me interested in niche perfumery, and for help in rediscovering the unexpected, that strange artistic expression of atmosphere that a perfume can provide to create an awareness of presence previously unknown. M/Mink presence is revealed by unlikely combinations of acrid piercing shrieks, animalic warmth, elusive incense and a slow tuning of an orchestral medley of strangeness. While this odd mix is happening other people smell a light cleansing mystical shining woods and leave compliments as I come and go. M/Mink has been a favorite perfume companion for me and my mate for a few years now. I highly recommend it, if you are up for an adventure, give it a chance and delay criticism until you see how it evolves and brings back the new to life.
05th August, 2017

Bond-T by Sammarco

This is a great fragrance. It won't be liked by all because it is dry dark and moody, but if you stay with it great character is revealed very slowly. The opening is bittersweet chocolate, made alive with a touch of vanilla for chocolateness, but then is taken further to the dark side with patchouli which underscores the darkness in the chocolate. This opening part reminds me of the health food shop chocolate bar I buy for its 80%+ pure chocolate content that I gladly consume for its "antioxidant healing properties" - oh yes, that dark chocolate bar. But as the first hour wears on and the fragrance unfolds you realize that a secret underside of soft subtle well worn suede lays beneath the chocolatey opening. The first to appear is osmanthus with a peach toned fuzzy texture. Next, the osmanthus blends into castoreum and civet that adds more dry earthiness to somewhat change the entire composition away from a gourmand to become a soft, warm mossy leather. The chocolate is still there but it is now a matte coating over a sueded earthier base. It's a very nice finish to an interesting opening for Bond-T by Sammarco.

I wanted to mention these fragrant antecedents that predate with use of chocolate and patchouli with great success but also with significant differences to Bond-T. Borneo 1834 by Serge Lutens is a bold patchouli contrasted with an amber floral base while keeping chocolate subtle but noticeable. Coze 02 by Parfumerie Generale is a green leafy patchouli + sattiva herbal blend with coffee and chocolate being secondary to the earthy herbal incense. Most similar to Bond-T in scent is Chocolatl by Euphorium Brooklyn which couples dark bitter chocolate with a complex blend of leafy incense notes and other gourmand notes ending with a similar but more subtle castoreum leather base. Chocolatl maintains the chocolate character longer than Bond-T but is not as soft at the ending. I rate all four of these chocolate patchouli perfumes very highly and they are all at about the same level of quality, but with their individual differences. Borneo is the strongest patchouli, Coze is leafiest and most down to earth, Chocolatl is most chocolatey, while Bond-T is the softest and perhaps the easiest to wear base notes of this group.
29th July, 2017

Vanilla Smoke by Aftelier

I have been collecting vanilla perfumes and the challenge is to find fragrances that do something special with the smell of vanilla because it is so intoxicatingly easy to enjoy vanilla all by itself - but who wants to be just plain vanilla! Not Mandy Aftel. Vanilla Smoke has a couple kinds of vanilla, a resinous quality and also a few stutter steps and structural dodges that add thickness, movement and depth within the warm vanilla story. Some of the best parts to the Vanilla Smoke dance are: Lapsang Souchong tea for bitter depth and, Saffron for scintillating edges, and Siam Wood for a honeyed fixative resinous thickness to hold all the parts. Despite the name this is not a smokey vanilla but is a thick, interesting, resinous warmth that avoids sugary vanilla - thankful for that. Rated 7 of 10 stars, shorted only for how quickly it fades to a pleasant skin scent afterthought, which is the curse of purely natural ingredient perfume.
27th July, 2017

Hermèssence Osmanthe Yunnan by Hermès

Osmanthe Yunnan floats in the air like a gentle memory of floral tea; a dry scent that tantalizes with hints and bits of flavor and aroma that while incomplete individually, form a composition of harmonic hues assembled into a satisfying completeness. This is a tea ceremony with that rare tea aroma of soft woods, sueded leather, osmanthus flower, bitter steam over white tea leaves, apricot skin, mist off the mountains from Yunnan province. This perfume is a creation that resonates a subtle beauty, the impressionistic mastery from an artist of aromas - the maestro, Jean Claude Ellena.
27th July, 2017

Vespero by Jeroboam

Vespero is a handsome, strong fragrance of wizened but unflinching character. Opening with a glimmer of grapefruit tartness the perfume rolls up from the depths plunging the wearer into bone dry darkened leather with a patchouli heart, and doesn't back off holding through a charcoal dry, ashen leather base. The soft/dry of this particular musk base reinforces the breathless, wisdom from pain story of Jeroboam Vespero. Rated 8 of 10 stars.
26th July, 2017 (last edited: 27th July, 2017)

Santo Incienso by The Different Company

Santo Incienso is a light green cedar and palo santo fragrance that breathes an effervescent ozone lightness to create a shimmering and lasting incense presence. This is the elevating ocean wind off the Pacific blown inland through giant Sequoias, is what I think of here so I am convinced that Palo Santo forest by an oceanside might be an inspiration. There is a simplicity about this light green shining woods that is pleasant to smell and lasting. The note combination reminds me of aroma of cedar and palo santo used as a base in many Fueguia 1833 fragrances - might this be a South American regionally specific note? A soft musk keeps the base light without smoke or powder, and hedione adds a sanguine pineapple organic spritz to the green aspects. This is not a deep bell toned incense but is the constant ocean breezes whipping sparkling chimes that dance through a palo santo "holy wood" woodland. A refreshingly light incense!
26th July, 2017 (last edited: 27th July, 2017)

Monogram Collection : Suède de Suède by Mona di Orio

Mona di Orio's Suede de Suede is a satisfying leather fragrance that immediately shows off its ethereal softness of fine saffron, rare ambrette and scintillating osmanthus for a perfect suede accord. Added to this soft start is an aged quality of castoreum, dark patchouli, strawberry leaf, cedar to wear in some natural grit qualities to transform innocent suede into a solid experienced leather. I like the result. Rate this Mona di Orio Suede 9 of 10 stars.
19th July, 2017

Daarej pour Homme by Rasasi

Daarej pour Homme is a dry, soft woodland rose oriented scent. The primary notes are: cardamom, artemisia and cumin; middle notes are rose and orris root; base notes are sandalwood, patchouli, amber, musk, vanilla and tonka bean. From the notes list and at first sniff I thought maybe this is Lumiere Noire pour Homme and it may emulate this great Francis Kurkdjian creation, but the powdery musk base is more pronounced for a softer more elusive quality. There is dry transparent rose which has a bitter artemsia spike to it that is appealing and reminiscent of Rose Anonyme or even Dior Gris Montaigne, except for the light but noticeable cumin note of the dry down. Daarej pour Homme is lightly rosy, woody, transparent, soft dry musk base which turns into a light cumin spice for well worn natural contrast with the rose notes turning this fragrance slightly masculine. Really it is unisex in nature with some aspects feminine and some masculine. I compare Daarej PH to Lumiere Noire pour Homme, Atelier Rose Anonyme and Dior Gris Montagne and lands somewhere between these fragrant guideposts - a successful scent for sure. Why is it that Rasasi fragrances are always being compared to something else? They have a habit of emulation of other great scents I guess. This is a very nice fragrance that has subtlety, warmth, maturity and balance and will be a good choice for daily wear due to its agility and versatile everyman quality. I would rate Daarej PH 7 of 10 stars.
19th July, 2017

Mandarine Glaciale by Atelier Cologne

Mandarine Glaciale is bright and sunny at opening with an orange gummy sweetness you associate with mandarin. Mandarins are flatter on the ends, easier to peel than oranges, and include tangerines and tangelos and while they are sweeter than oranges they lack the depth and juicy tartness. Immediately after the juicy orange mandarin note is a slightly indolic, rotting orange peel aroma from jasmine indole which is a contrasting note characteristic also used with great success in Atelier Orange Sanguine. Orange Sanguine is juicier, brighter and a sunnier orange while Mandarine Glaciale has a briefer "mandarin" sweet spot and less indole by a slight bit as it is almost unnoticeable. The base of Mandarine Glaciale is a slow quietening of orange radiance by dry petitgrain bitter orange, vetiver and oak moss and a friction free finish on a white amber (ambroxan) cloud. I like the imperfection in Mandarine Glaciale which keeps it realistic and gives some natural depth to the mandarin aroma although it is not quite as juicy or complete as the older brother Atelier Orange Sanguine. Mandarine Glaciale gets a 7 out of 10 star rating.
15th July, 2017

Luna Rossa Carbon by Prada

I so appreciate Luna Rossa Carbon as a fragrance. It is the fougere of my youth come full circle through its evolutionary cycle back home. In Luna Rossa Carbon I sniff echoes of Jade East, Brut, Hai Karate which have come to life through this warm unctuous patchouli/amber base and familiar lavender opening. This new base replaces the tonka powdery base of the old Luna Rossa models. Luna Rossa Sport is remodulated in base note to a patchouli and amber base to take Carbon darker, thicker and very "Jade East" reminiscent with its slowed down base. If Luna Rossa Sport is playing at 45 rpm, Carbon is now at 33 rpm - is anyone old enough to know this metaphor? It's Barry White versus Michael Jackson - smooth and deep. This warm base note vibrates at a slower register and removes us from the quick little puffy clouds of earlier Luna Rossas to a deeper felt and more sublime Luna Rossa Carbon. Although darker, there is still that innocent sweet fougere style that is very old fashioned in sensibility. Result is a nice smoothe warmth, that has considerable linkage to long gone fragrances from fifty years ago.
14th July, 2017 (last edited: 15th July, 2017)