They didn’t bother with top notes on this one. How radical is that? You have to wait for the blast of undisguised rubbing alcohol to wear off before you can enjoy the punchy basil/tarragon herbal accord Gendarme V has to offer. I haven’t smelled a more literal rendition of these culinary herbs since Maître Parfumeur et Gantier’s salad dressing fantasy Baïme, and while it’s an appealing effect in both cases, it’s not necessarily something I want to wear.
As Gendarme V develops the anisic/licorice aspect of its herbal notes grows more conspicuous, in contrast to a sharp, tart citrus accord. I’d love to smell the listed civet note, since it would add depth and warmth to the composition while counteracting the salad dressing vibe, but it’s not registering for me at all. The basil ultimately outlasts the citrus, which isn’t saying much, since the whole scent runs its course inside of two hours. My final call? For an herbal, anisic citrus scent, you’re better off with Eau de Rochas or Annick Goutal’s Eau du Sud.
14th June, 2014 (last edited: 15th June, 2014)
Smells like clean soap. Fresh. Light. Too light. Not bad, but not good. Soap is cheaper.
I just don't like these notes, except for the civet, which is done well here. I'll give it a neutral because I can't think of anything "wrong" with it, but it's definitely not the kind of fragrance I enjoy these days. I find the anise to be strong and not pleasant here, but I do like Lolita Lempicka au Masculin, so that leads me to believe that it's just the combination here that doesn't work for me, rather than the fragrance being "bad" in any way.
Doesn't Gendarme do anything else besides soapy, clean scents. This one has a weird floral note (carnation?) in it. A little better than the original.
I have a hard time distinguishing this from the original. As with the original, I don't find the unnuanced grassiness very appealing.
A less citrusy version of the original classic, the base of Vetiver and Tonka is what distinguishes it. One of my friends like this version better, and says that the earth Vetiver is what makes it stand out (he is a big fan of earthy vetiver scents). However to my nose, the combination of the clean fresh top notes and then a transformation to an earthy vetiver base, while sounds intriguing on paper, doesnt really work for me .. the fresh top notes and the earthy vetiver clash a lot and the scent seems unstable at times.