Genre: Woody Oriental
More bois than vanille to my nose, and unlike some other reviewers, I find this a tad less syrupy sweet than some of the other Sheldrake/Lutens concoctions. Vanilla dominates in the top notes but soon integrates into a mélange of very rich, heavy woods, spiced with a bit of anise. I’m reminded of Feminite du Bois, but Un Bois Vanille is chunkier and less lithe than its older sister, even though it’s also less complex. Not entirely unpalatable, but not all that exciting either.
Perfect example of why I don't wear gourmands. I become Pavlov's Dog and drool on my own arm. Vanilla, licorice, beeswax, almond, and an unlisted coconut note--all favorite flavors of mine--plus the deep sweetness of a Serge Lutens fragrance. Stop, you're killing me. I have to go raid the candy jar now.
A wonderful vanilla bean scent, not as foody as many vanillas, yet aptly sweet. Notes of coconut milk, black vanilla absolute, beeswax, caramelized benzoin, licorice, bitter almond paste, Gaïac wood, Tonka bean, sandalwood.
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Meh - this vanilla freak is underwhelmed. Serge Lutens' legions would probably draw me, quarter me and roast my remains at the stake for this, but if you think you might want to try this particualr vanilla type on for size, save yourself a jillion dollars and start with a $5 bottle of Body Fantasies Vanilla Sugar Fantasy, available at drugstores everywhere. No, of course it's not as good as the Lutens - but profile-wise, it's not all that hugely different a scent. Both are cool, woody vanillas dashed with coconut and sandalwood; the only major compositional difference is Lutens' addition of a black licorice note, which makes his vanilla a little darker than the Body Fantasies. And if you just can't stomach the idea of comparing caviar to tuna, then at least look into Calypso Vanille - which again, brings together low-warmth vanilla with coconut and a bit of wood, though the orange blossom and greens throw a slightly more tropical feeling to the Calypso. And if you still can't deal with anything other than high-end, at least check out Annick Goutal's Vanille Exquise first and possibly save yourself a few dollars - though the Goutal is thinner and more plasticky and in fact thoroughly unpleasant in many ways. Or else just go ahead and take the plunge on Bois Vanille, but don't go into it expecting anything very rich, warm, fragrant or gourmand. This is as much wood as it is vanilla and it's just not all that enticing.