Positive Reviews of Cabochard by Grès

    Find out more about Cabochard by Grès in the Basenotes Fragrance Directory


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    Darvant's avatar

    Italy Italy

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    Cabochard de Gres is over the top, a stiff veritable classic, simply one of the best leather mossy chypre of the olfactory universe in my humble opinion. This milestone represents indeed (side by side with "pillars" a la Balenciaga Portos, Monsieur Rochas, Equipage, La Perla, Arrogance Pour Homme, Cuir de Russie L.T. Piver, Kouros and further) the reason on which nowadays moonshiny perfumers as for instance Antonio Gardoni (Bogue MAAI, Cologne Reloaded), Vero Kern (Mito and Onda) or Enrico Buccella (Cerchi nell'Acqua Waves), just quoting several, keep on to perform (in a contemporary key) neo-classic concoctions based on animalic amber, honey, moss/galbanum, ylang-ylang, hesperides, leather, aldehydes and stuffs like that (taking inspiration from the glorious past and re-proposing a classic animalic chypre traditional recipe). I'd go beyond the evolution description just underlining how much smooth, balanced and refined this work of art finally performs on my skin (after a complicated almost gloomy opening). I detect ylang-ylang, honey/wax and rose for sure (yes at the beginning somewhat stuffy), an aldehydic/camphoraceous mossy (slighty dirty-stale) introducing blast and a soapy leathery shadowy background with woody-animalic accents, musks and tonka. Bergamot, a touch of aromatics, animalic-aldehydic leather and patchouli provide a virile, vaguely lemony, intensely honeyed-leathery and mouldy spark in the air with that typical classic dose of potpourri/vintage that delineates a left back "mannered/cultured" glorious territory. Cabochard could obviously turn out quite dated for the ordinary standards but its gentlemanly "level" is superbly holy in the middle of this general depressing current panorama.

    23 September, 2014

    Colin Maillard's avatar

    Italy Italy

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    My review is for the vintage EDT. The opening is beyond classic, a dirty, animalic chypre comprising salty aldehydes, dark, gloomy, wet and almost rancid flowers, a subtle camphor-stale indolic aftertaste, a load of musk, a velvety balsamic breeze all over and a general, palpable funereal, austere, but at the same time vibrant, carnal, utterly sensual and self-confident personality. A humid base of herbs, woods, oak moss and leather like in the darkest male fougère complete the composition. The similarity to many fougères for man is quite bold, basically here's more about flowers, there's more woods and green notes, but the heart of oak moss, aldehydes and leather which gives that precise "austere" and dark personality is quite the same. That is why nowadays this can be clearly considered more a man scent, and even quite challenging for its boldness and its darkness – we're so used to "azure-aquatic-green-sport" bullshit. To be really honest, like some other chypres, this also smells a bit outdated to me, meaning that it is a powerful madeleine of a past era which strongly connotes the person wearing it – perfectly for nostalgic people or however to smell "like" that, but on the contrary, it lacks in the "timelessness" I personally value in scents. Other than that (which I'm not even sure if it's clear, however it's my personal opinion) it's a sure milestone for perfumery, superb from any point of view.

    8,5-9/10

    19 June, 2014

    Diamondflame's avatar

    Singapore Singapore

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    A sad tale of two (probably more) reformulations.

    The vintage pre-formulated version was a complex multifaceted gem with a raspy galbanum top, a smoky green leathery heart and deeply mossy chypre undertones. Not quite as challenging as Piguet's Bandit but still the headstrong, motorcycle-riding leather-clad butch sister to Chanel No.19's too-cool-for-school ice queen.

    The latest incarnation unfortunately smells nothing like the original. On my skin all I got was a linear, mildly spiced talc. This rating is obviously for the true Gres Cabochard. As for the impostor? Throw it in the trash can where it belongs.

    29 April, 2014

    Ayala's avatar

    Canada Canada

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    Cabochard is so many things - green, leathery, woody, floral, indolic... It begins with a definitive juicy-green character, like frsehly squeezed wheatgrass; yet there is something ashy and dry underneath. The health-concious wheatgrass juicer is also a chain smoker. The nicotine in her veins brings the best of her - creativity, energy, laughter. It's balanced again with some medicinal sage, and pretty, clean and proper neroli and enough rose to make you think of a rose garden but not smell like an English lady. Orange blossom and jasmine make advances as the perfume develops on the skin. These two bold notes, while indolic and dirty, also have a zest of life to them, a very forward personality, with the methyl anthranilate shining through beautifully and bringing some sweetness into the green. They are only ever so slightly soft-focused with powdery orris note. As for the base - it's what you've always dreamed of: oakmoss, tobacco and vetiver, with some isobutyl quinoline for good measure.

    Cabochard to me seems to have predicted the future of the 1970's - No. 19, especially, to whom it is a very close relative with the same motifs of leather, greens, juicy citrus notes, iris, leather and vetiver; interplay between green, dry and floral-powdery. As well as everything that followed, dominated by green, herbaceous and soapy notes. The leading scents in this trend were No. 19, Ivoire, Estée Lauder's Azurée (by perfumer Bernard Chant), Alliage and Private Collection; Coriandre, Calandre, Chamade, 1000, AnaisAnais, and Aromatics Elixir (also designed by Bernard Chant), and of course Rive Gauche. I'm glad I found out who is the perfumer behind it (though I'm certain that Guy Robert's Chouda - the original fragrance Madame Gres commissioned for her brand - was magnificent!) and see the connections with his other creations.

    Top notes: Sage, Rose, Neroli
    Heart notes: Jasmine, Orange Blossom, Orris
    Base notes: Vetiver, Leather, Oakmoss, Tobacco

    22 January, 2014

    dlane1953's avatar

    United States United States

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    Mossy,woody, and very leathery

    Dark, woody, leathery, mossy: like a walk through the dark forest

    I've wanted to sample this for years. Leathery, musky, dark fragrances appeal to my sense of uniqueness--at least on an intellectual level. Anything that falls outside the sweet/fruity/girly category that's been in the vanguard of feminine perfumery for so many years was bound to grab my attention. And now I've been gifted with a vintage sample of this fragrance. I'm so impressed.

    I have no idea of the age of this sample, but it's dark, bitter, and herby. At first I was overwhelmed by the leathery notes that leapt to the forefront so quickly. I sensed no florals at all--leather, top front and center for several hours, then a slow softening of the notes to a gorgeous, woody, mossy drydown. Is it the age of the sample or the year it was produced? I wish I knew; this is so unique that I wonder if I'd be disappointed if I purchased a recent formulation. I'd always believed I'd love leathery scents, but now I wonder if it's less the leather than the woodiness that's often used in the basenotes of many leather-based scents. For me, the basenotes are the highlight of the fragrance. Rich and dark and moody--not an easy fragrance to wear but trust me, you will be remembered! Sillage is powerful, longevity is beyond the norm---a light dabbing is going on 8 hours now and still very strong. Update: the next morning I could still catch whiffs of this powerful fragrance.

    Vintage is recommended since I can't speak for newer versions. Not a fragrance for everyone--you need a strong dose of chutzpah to carry this! A great unisex fragrance, probably most suitable for evenings--but then again, if you love it and possess the requisite personality, anytime is a good time to wear Cabochard.

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    Pros: Strong character, long lasting, unique
    Cons: May be too leathery and bitter for some tastes."

    22 September, 2013

    rbaker's avatar



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    Soft leather, green and versatile

    The vintage version: From the beginning I get a lot of tarragon and ylang ylang and galbanum in an interesting mix, with orris and a bit of jasmine, although the orris remains in the background. The drydown develops into notes of wood and amber, but overall on my skin this is quite a light and bright scent, in spite of oakmoss, amber, leather and patchouli becoming more prominent later on. Maybe it is the citrus/vetiver component, maybe the fact that the leather, patchouli and moss are not of the very heavy or sharper fougère variety: on me it remains soft and quite restraint. It is colourful and changes over the hours. Projection and silage are limited, but longevity is an acceptable more than four hours. Very versatile.

    06 June, 2013

    LipglossandaBackpack's avatar

    Canada Canada

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    I did two spritzes of Cabochard EdP this morning. Eleven hours later it's still going strong. On me it started crisp and green, then throughout the day it ebbed and flowed into something much warmer and more powdery, walking a fine line between powdery and dusty. There's nothing contemporary about this scent (if my mom wore it I'd probably tease her about her old lady perfume), and I wouldn't wear it for a Trans-Atlantic flight, but it's unexpected and fun for playing dress-up on a cold winter day.

    10th January, 2013

    rttoronto's avatar

    Canada Canada

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    Very similar to Bandit and Azuree...Bandit smells the best of the three but is much more expensive. You can't beat Cabochard's pric...buy one, well worth it. Very unisex. Great sillage for an EDT.

    07 January, 2013

    Wee Scottish Scent Lover's avatar

    United Kingdom United Kingdom

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    OK, I'm giving it a thumbs up for now, but I'm still scared of it. I bought it blind after reading rave reviews on Basenotes (I trust you lot). Anyway, it's still too summery to get away with it, but I'm going to wear it to work in autumn on a day when i'm wearing lots of black and feeling powerful. I have a feeling it'll give me an air of aloofness and make some people wither in my presence, but that's not always a bad thing. I feel this is the perfume Cruella de Ville would wear, but just for the record, I adore dogs. Watch this space. I may come back with more in a few months.

    18 September, 2012

    JackTwist's avatar

    United States United States

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    CABOCHARD – Gres – 1959 [floral chypre]

    This is such a masculine scent, that I am surprised it was ever marketed as a woman’s scent. It is a spicy, herbal scent, drying to a classic oakmoss chypre with a fragrant floral overlay – quite unique in all of the women’s scents I have experienced.

    Top Notes: Clary Sage, Galbanum, Tarragon, Hesperides
    Middle Notes: Jasmine, Rose, Ylang Ylang, Orris, Geranium
    Base Notes: Amber, Patchouli, Musk, Oakmoss, Vetiver, Castoreum, Sandalwood

    01st May, 2012

    Zut's avatar



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    Cabochard is one of my all time favourites. Usually, chypre cuir fragrances are very dry and sometimes really hard. Some feminine fragrances in this category can be mistaken for masculine EDTs. Not Cabochard! This great perfume has dark green notes, rich woody notes and smokey leathery notes but they are all softened by the splendid floral elements which contribute to making the entire composition truly feminine. Many years ago, I came across a rather impressive grey-haired business-woman dressed in a very chic marine blue trouser suit. She wore Cabochard with such elegance and confidence she made all the heads turn. From this moment on, I have thought of Cabochard as the perfect fragrance for daring and self-assertive women.

    23 November, 2011

    blood-orange's avatar

    Australia Australia

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    I would never have imagined in a hundred years that I would enjoy leather-based scents. The thought of leather makes me cringe, however when I come to smelling leather scents, I am suitably impressed.

    Cabochard, along with Bandit by Robert Piguet, are the essential, classic leather fragrances. From this fragrance I get a lot of dry, smokey and powdery leather and woods.

    There are many floral notes in this composition that keeps Cabochard from becoming too masculine. The way that this fragrance has been presented, makes me think of a strong, independant woman that appears tough on the outside but is loving and feminine on the inside.

    Cabochard summed up in my own words is a sexy scent with attitude. Interestingly I was nearly going to say that Cabochard smelt like an elegant, black leather handbag. It just so happens that after leaving the perfume store, a few doors down I walked past a store that sold handbags and as I walked past I inhaled the aroma of leather. In no way does Cabochard prove similar to that shiny, brand new, leathery smell we all know and love.

    I'm not sure as to how much this fragrance differs from its pre-formulated, vintage self, however the Cabochard as it is now is very wearable and certainly unique.

    27 August, 2011

    alfarom's avatar

    Italy Italy

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    I never had the chance to smell the original Cabochard yet, but I've to say that the current formulation still smells pretty good. It opens with a bitter green accord while extremely pitched citruses float around. Floral patterns make their appearance together with animalic leather notes adding body and complexity to this extremely influential fragrance.

    A point of strength of this composition is the appearantly "simple smell" that makes of it an easy option for leather beginners as well as a satysfying experience for the most trained noses. I trust more aknowledged reviewrers than I, that current Cabochard has almost nothing to do with the vintage version, but IMO it still smells much better than the majority of today's mass market fragrances.

    While Cabochard is anything but aged, it still has a remarkable old-fashioned vibe that works as a reminder of its status as a classic leather-chypre. Definitely unisex. A mandatory try!

    20th August, 2011

    mumsy's avatar

    United Kingdom United Kingdom

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    I used to wear the old Cabochard, so I bought a bottle recently just for old times sake and to see what they had done to it. I'm a die hard fan of the old version, but yes, sometimes it could be very uncompromising as an old dame of its type. The tobacco and leather could sometimes get quite harsh and a bit fag/old ashtray. This one is more linear, but I think actually more wearable because it has been lightened up. I'm not normally a fan of any reformulations, but in this case I quite like this one. Even enough to write a review.

    It's like a very recognisable cousin and still deserves to be in the same family with some merit to it. The lack of ooomph within hasn't made it a nasty perfume, just a much paler self. I'm wearing it anyway.... and i'm pleased I bought it. It's dry and sultry still.

    12 July, 2011

    Weimar27's avatar

    United States United States

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    Dark smoky and racy Sex walks down the nocturnal streets though wet asphalt
    with the scent of cigarette in her hand and steam from the subway floors
    this is an seductive scent with no evidence of the good girl in her

    16 August, 2010

    Mimi Gardenia's avatar

    United States United States

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    This is for the vintage parfum so kindly given to me by one of my basenoter friends .:)
    This reminds me ,very oddly, of two separate things:
    1. The smell of my very old barbie dolls from the 1970s.
    2.The aroma of warm human skin just under the arm - note... I did NOT say armpit ! A human skin smell - not dirty or sweaty but comforting.
    Yes there is leather which is distinct also but very smooth and a background aroma. Vetiver is also very distinct in this parfum and I think this is giving it the human smell more than anything else. This is quite a soothing fragrance to me. I believe I have smelt this before on various women, when I was a small thing.


    15 July, 2010

    cheryl's avatar

    Canada Canada

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    I have a sample of uncertain vintage. Not sure the concentration. Not knowing the notes I first thought cigarette/tobacco on a bed of vanilla. This was not quite pleasant...as I have so many negative associations to cigarette smoke. The next day I tried again. No cigarette smell. No flowers. Not a chypre. A very mysterious and warm dry scent that made the hair on my skin stand up it was so evocative of something. On my skin it isn't so much bold (as others have found) as singular. I think it's a leather embroidered together with Ylang Ylang and Jasmine..that contrive to make it subliminally illicit. This one does a real "head trip." I'm full of admiration for anything that is not a floral but still beautiful...

    16 June, 2010

    Bartlebooth's avatar

    United Kingdom United Kingdom

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    A mere imitation of its former self, but still an intriguing blend of booze and slightly bitter florals. The opening is light and evokes the image of a rose dipped in a tumbler of whisky. It becomes more floral and sweet with the introdcution of jasmine, but never yielding to the feminine side. With a similar base note composition to Aramis, the dry down is rich, aromatic and lends the fragrance an air of simple refinement. It has a moderate longevity, feels quite contained, and is undoubtedly suitable for wear by either sex.

    18 September, 2009

    hagertygal's avatar



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    AHHH. This is perfect! I wear Bandit and Cabochard exclusively. The scents of "today" seem nothing, compared to the classics of the 40s and 50s and earlier. Too many of them smell like candy, or worse yet, flowers. All my co-workers slather themselves with creations from Bath and Body Works, smelling of one dimensional fragrances of vanilla, peaches, blackberries...ick.
    I actually love Cabochard so much, I bought 17 bottles of Cabochard, when I found it for....yes.....14 bucks for the 3.4 ounce spray! Oh so cheap, but only in the price, not the scent. I even spray Cabochard on my pillow at night, just so I can wake up to it's comforting smell. Yes, it screams of leather, but in a subtle way, like suede. My husband likes the smell, and although I think Cabochard and Bandit are somewhat sister scents, he complains the Bandit smells a bit too manly. I say, too bad for him! The guys I work with actually appreciate my Cabochard, and some of them have even asked to wear it. Most of them spray their wrists several times, and sniff it throughout the day, telling me it covers up the horrid smells that the other women are wearing, lol.

    01st September, 2009

    sfmedusa's avatar

    United Kingdom United Kingdom

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    Fabulous fabulous fabulous!

    I've just embarked on my scented journey and found Cabochard after reading some random reviews here on BN and decided to give it a whirl. I'm SO glad that I have.

    On me this smells like a female version of Obsession for men (but not like Obsession for women) which will mean that I don't have to nick my boyfriend's bottle any more!

    22 April, 2009

    Dolphins's avatar



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    Sadly neglected absolutely stunning espcially in the Perfume form of this fragrance.Why did it take so long for you to find me?.

    20th December, 2008

    distortech's avatar

    United States United States

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    Gorgeous. An absolute pleasure to admire all day and all night. Classy and elegant on girls AND guys.

    A true classic.

    11th September, 2008

    mi-cuit's avatar



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    Down to a last few precious drops of vintage Cabochard. Undoubtedly the best leather chypre in my mind. The woods give it a feeling of expansiveness that I have not encountered anywhere else.

    07 September, 2008

    mrclmind's avatar

    United States United States

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    Cabochard is a classic green/leather chypre. Many people comment on Cabochard's similarity to Bandit. They do share many characteristics, but I find Bandit to be a drier, less floral composition which ends up smelling more masculine than Cabochard. Cabochard has a similar jasmine/ylang/leather/tobacco dance as Tabac Blond, but is more feminine and more polite than Tabac Blond. Although I can smell all three of these fragrances easily worn by a man, Cabochard seems the most feminine of the three to me. I can't see myself wearing it, but I'd love to be around a woman who does. It is a truly stunning perfume.

    02 September, 2008

    newgabe's avatar

    Australia Australia

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    My new best friend! After the inital, misleading leafy blast, it quickly settles to a delicious, evocative, natural feeling, dry, almost musty aura that leaves my clothes smelling so familar and comfortable, I don't even want to wash them. This is the reliable friend- perfum I've been searching for. Layers well with vetivers too, like Guerlain's, Boucheron Homme or Chanel Sycomore. In fact I am thinking of buying one of those huge (expensive) bottles of Sycomore just to repear that trick over the long term. I bought two bottles of Cabochard .. they are so cheap, why not!

    15 August, 2008

    TaoLady's avatar

    United States United States

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    I wore (and ADORED) this savvy scent in my early twenties and while this newer version hasn't the pizzaz (who remembers Diana Vreeland?) of it's forbear it is still a classy green scent with just a whisper of flowers and a slightly tobacco-filled-room of a drydown. Totally belies the rather frumpy frosted bow etched onto the front of the bottle. In my opinion.

    05 July, 2008

    Carl999's avatar

    Australia Australia

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    Good stuff! Green, but intense, provocative, and just Aramis-like enough for a guy to wear.

    My mum purchased a bottle of Perfume Empire.com.au recently.

    I was going out one night when she was away, and decided to spritz myself with some...

    Lo and behold, my gf and some of my friends complimented me on it. They said it smelled great, and that I should use it more often! I think I'll get a bottle for myself after I move out in the next week...

    10th June, 2007

    Indiscreet's avatar

    United Kingdom United Kingdom

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    I sniffed this for the first time today and instantly thought "Bandit". A green, leathery fragrance with a hint of something naughty. Nice! But as I already like and own Bandit, I won't be investing in this.

    05 May, 2007

    Kevin Guyer's avatar

    United States United States

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    I thought I was going crazy, when I sprayed Cabochard on my arm, after the drydown, I thought to myself, this reminds me of Aramis. What was I thinking? This is a fragrance created for a woman and Aramis is one of the most macho scents ever! Well, to my suprise, I just saw that Bernard Chant also created Aramis. So, there it is: Cabochard is Aramis for the the gals. As Gomer Pyle used to say, "Golllllly!!"

    21st April, 2007

    purplebird7's avatar

    United States United States

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    I am pleasantly surprised at the new Cabochard. I had avoided it, having heard that the reformulated version bears little resemblance to the bold original. However, it is still a good fragrance, and for a reasonable price. This is a great presentation of galbanum. I love this particular green note, and it conveys itself wonderfully in the opening notes, cool and stylish. Also, the spices are well-chosen--clove and/or bay-- which synch perfectly with the green notes. At the core of the fragrance is tobacco or leather and a bit of earthy patchouli. Overall, it is fresh, even minty, and more wearable than the harsher Bandit EDT/EDP. (I might note that Bandit pure parfum is a totally different story, incredibly soft and pretty.) As it dries, it takes on a powdery aspect that is both sweet and a little smoky. Very fun. Attention-getting.

    22 February, 2007

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