Perfume Reviews

Reviews of L'Air du Desert Marocain by Tauer

Total Reviews: 192
L'Air du Desert Marocain (2005) is the second perfume from one-man-house Tauer, composed like all of them are, by Andy Tauer himself. This STEM professional/IT guy-turned perfumer started off doing fragrances like this as a hobby, using the hand weighing and mixing of ingredients, although I don't believe he hand-mascerates, tinktures, or infuses everything as Creed claim to do. Regardless, L'Air du Desert Marocain is a prime example of "back to the old ways" perfume when only Lords and Ladies could afford bespoke commissioned fragrances while everyone else subsisted on the occasional bath water, but brought into modern times and batch-produced for public purchase. L'Air du Desert Marocain is one of Tauer's most popular fragrances, and the one that really put Tauer on the map as a perfume brand, allowing Andy to "quit his day job" and focus on perfume as a career. The scent of L'Air du Desert Marocain is decidely masculine even if it is sold as a unisex creation, so no doubt most of this praise comes from guys who dig it's spicy, smoky, and dry trail befitting its name. Tauer also presents a tremendous value in the artisinal niche world in that his scents are rarely single-market or limited under the standard Tauer label.

The scent of L'Air du Desert Marocain opens with a lot of coriander, a real challenge for people who like but don't love the note. There's also a virile hit of cumin that fades into the mix and some subtle but sharp petitgrain in the top that floats around, but L'Air du Desert Marocain doesn't "announce itself" with a ton of bergamot, grapefruit, or other citrus. This make application a bit tricky as the scent does that quiet-to-loud reverse dry down I've noted in several other fragrances where the middle or base begins diffusing before the claimed top notes due to variance in ingredient density, so take some time getting to know L'Air du Desert Marocain before hosing yourself. Cistus labdanum aka Rockrose is the majority heart note here, coming in before the spices of the top, then joined by a pale jasmine that fades like the cumin before that very smoky vetiver takes hold. The drydown is similar to Guerlain Jicky (1889) in that there is just an umbrella of notes that collapse into the base, and by the time that collapse occurs, we're swimming in dry ambergris, vetiver smoke, and cedar sprinkled with cistus and coriander. This is an eau de parfum, so expect closer wear that lasts all day, especially in the lack of effusive top notes. L'Air du Desert Marocain also feel best used in formal or business settings in fall or winter. Just because this stuff smells like a desert, it doesn't mean for you to wear it in one, or on a hot humid day.

Fans of smoky vetiver masculine classics like Jacomo de Jacomo (1980), Roger & Gallet Open (1985), or Aramis Havana (1994) will find a lot to love with L'Air du Desert Marocain, as this is like a "next level" fragrance in terms of intensity compared to them. Cistus and coriander replace the boozy or mossy characteristics of those older scents, which might be a deal breaker as mentioned above, but anyone wanting to smell like they smoked a hookah before jumping on a camel to take a journey along the ancient Spice Road will utterly fall in love with L'Air du Desert Marocain. Pentagon bottles for Tauer are notoriously wonky so be warned if you're diving in for a full purchase, but there are fixes if your cap gets stuck or doesn't stay. This is a definite thumbs up for me, but as a huge fan of labadnum and vetiver, I already have a lot of choices in this vein both new and vintage, so reaching for L'Air du Desert Marocain wouldn't happen often for me, especially at the niche price point. Had I discovered this before any of the others, my allegiances might skew differently, so hats off to Andy Tauer for proving far more valuable crafting olfactive gems than lines of Javascript. Luckily, he also works his ass off to meet demand, so there's little fear of scalpers buying up stock and flipping it with an extra zero on the price tag. Good stuff!
14th December, 2018
Stardate 20181030:

Amber is a very versatile note in fragrance. It is used as fixative. Add it to vanilla and you get an oriental. It also adds warmth and/or a shimmering glow to the composition.
In all these application, Amber adds sweetness to the composition. Dry Amber is not something I have seen.
LADDM changed that. Somehow Andy made the Amber dry. And I guess that is where the Desert comes from in the name.
The addition of soft spices evokes image of a souk in a desert. Name is apt and fragrance amazing.
30th October, 2018
Wow. This one is really impressive. I describe it as a very sweet, dry and spicy fragrance that lasts all day. I blindly purchased half an oz after reading all of the good things on here and I'm really glad I did.
17th October, 2018
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The Dog by Francisco Goya
02nd October, 2018
It's not the desert
But mirages of cities
That enchant me so.

These wooden antiques
No age is asked or given
Lest question vanish.

Fair perfumed ladies
Laughing over the next dune
At sure oasis.

Some sweet confection
Warm in a breezy window
There in the distance.

Just let me be there
Long enough to remember
To return to here.
07th September, 2018
Sweet and spiced beginning. The cumin nearly kills it for me, as it gives this a rubber tire smell. After the cumin recedes the rest of this fragrance is divine. the jasmine smells sweet to me. My usual fave type of scent in a warm, amberish, dry, patchy-type, and woody base. However, I enjoy Au Coeur du Desert much more.
16th August, 2018
This is so very nice, although not quite as distinctive as I had imagined given some of the reviews here. It has the profile of many Oud-based scents, although there is no actual Oud involved - basically it seems to contain many of the same supporting elements: coriander, jasmine, rose, cedar but built around a different incense core. In many ways, it reminds me of nothing so much as a more sophisticated, subtle and less macho take on something like Old Spice - I'm serious here, and I don't mean this in a bad way at all. However, the dry-down, even the next day, is a lovely chocolate, which you definitely don't get with Old Spice...
17th March, 2018
A real work of art that I have placed in my all time favorite list!

L'Air du Desert Marocain isn't 100% different from any or all scents out there. Matter of fact, I immediately catch whiffs of other rock rose, coriander / cumin, patchouli and oakmoss (not listed in Marocain's pyramid of notes) and vetiver fragrances I have come to love, as present in Cartier Roadster, dsquared He Wood Rocky Mountain Wood, Chanel pour Monsieur Concentree, and Tom Ford Patchouli Absolu.

What sets it apart are the faint notes ambergris accented by the spices in the head notes, mixing deftly with the jasmine in the heart and cedar in the base to give it a really special quality that words can't describe. Definitely L'Air du Desert Marocain does a great job evoking distant desert lands in exotic locations that beckon the imagination to dream, to reflect and savor this wonderful EdP. I prefer to wear it on occasions where I won't be moving around too much, as I want to experience this lustrous fragrance without hurry nor with distractions. Perfect for casual and formal occasions, ultimately Marocain is smooth, refined, exotic, and full of stories that unfold expertly within the heart of the wearer and smeller alike. BIG thumbs up! :-)
03rd March, 2018
Dry, woody incense with some nice florals. It's light and heavy at the same time, somehow.

Excellent performance, a little goes a long way. Not sure which note it is but there is just a little sweetness to it. The sweetness is almost sticky.

I can really see this as unisex, doesn't lean one way or the other for me.
01st February, 2018
At first wearing, this gets the YUCK award. This smells like sweat and booty and NOT in a good way. I cannot imagine wearing this anywhere except to bed, but I would dream about needing a shower all night. 100% not for me. I'm glad I only got a decant.
15th December, 2017
There has been a lot of hype over this fragrance and maybe its because it reacts favorable with others skin chemistry but on me I find it very linear in composition and development. At first spray I get a slight waft of fragrant notes then straight dry cedar/ wood shop for the rest the ride. If you are a fan of woody/cedar type fragrances then this may be a winner for you. With my skin chemistry I find a fragrance like Amber Absolute a much more interesting/ enjoyable than Tauer's LDDM. "To each is own"!
06th December, 2017
I have never been to Morocco. However, I haven been to Egypt. Luxor to be precise. It is probably my favorite place on earth. I have visited Luxor twice. It is like going back to biblical times and holds almost 20% of the world's historical monuments. The second time I visited Luxor was with my now wife but girlfriend at the time. I remember sitting in the gardens of a particular hotel. It was late at night. The air was filled with flowers, water from the river Nile and the smell of the near by Sahara desert. I was in love and remember thinking that I would like to capture that night forever. This is of course impossible and remains only in my imagination but L'Air du Desert Moracain does envoke memories of that particular night and Luxor in general. The spice, the flowers, the incense.......The overall feeling. A true perfumery journey and work of art. This is a very special fragrance and one that almost brings a tear to my eye. I can say that about no other fragrance. 10/10.
24th November, 2017 (last edited: 03rd November, 2018)
I have never regarded L'Air du Desert Marocain as a winter scent, despite its spicy resinous nature. There is something fresh and airy about it. In fact, it does the vast internal space trick better than Timbuktu in my opinion. Yes, it's a spicy (almost foodie), incensy, rosy, woody powerhouse, but it's definitely not a warm winter smell for me. This may be because I've spent some time East of the Atlas Mountains in Morocco, and the smell is associated with warm sunny weather and clear night skies in my head.

This brings to mind the smell of cedar and cloves and cooking and roses, even if they're not all in there. Oddly enough, when I used to go to Morocco quite a bit, I never thought of actually wearing any of these spicy oriental smells - my weapon of choice while there was always something sharp and fresh and not so feminine - Cristalle for example. I guess I still feel the notes in L'Air du Desert Marocain as an atmosphere or surrounding rather than a perfume, but it's a cloud I'm often blissed out to be walking around in.

Sometimes, I find spicy incense scents have a damp or dank rough edge to them, which may also contribute to my feeling that they are not winter scents. This isn't really present here in L'Air du Desert Marocain, which is beautifully dry, but the coolness is - there's a lovely vetiver streak running through it without a hint of cloying sweetness. That's actually the trick of L'Air du Desert Marocain for me - it's not at all cloying.

And the best part is - it's available in 15ml bottles as part of Andy Tauer's Explorer set of 3 15ml sizes.
20th July, 2017
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This is the best you can hope for in a fragrance that evokes an imagined memory.
Beautiful petitgrain/lavender opening dressed down by the cumin morphing into a resinous jasmine accord.
Suddenly it gets spicy/dusty dry like you have left the oasis and are now smack bang in the desert proper.
The oakmoss cedar patchouli base is like the beautiful haunting soundtrack of a cinematic masterwork. There are no individual starring performers here but the greatest ensemble cast gathered together making this fragrance/film the epic masterpiece it is.
This is ever changing and evolving during its development but always maintains its continuity. Enigmatic, enchanting and exciting.
10/10
19th July, 2017
Incense & sandalwood. I see how some folks are reminded of church. The drydown reminds me of the fragrance that surrounds you when you go to a Restoration Hardware or a Hollister. This one lasts and lasts. My girlfriend could still smell it on me when I got home from work. I could smell it when I got into bed, and again when I went to the gym. Sweet, vanilla ending, not bad,l. I will definitely wear this again.
Longevity high. Projection average. Nobody commented
15th July, 2017
The sense of smell is so closely linked with memory that a personal association can either make or break a fragrance. Unfortunately, I get nothing but dry, smokey incense wafting through Catholic mass - so much that I half-expected to be pelted by a shower of holy water. And even though a very nice vanilla note joins in at dry down, the frankincense-type accord dominates. Incidentally, this is the first fragrance that gave me a splitting headache.
09th May, 2017
Not a crowd-pleaser, so I think it takes a little self-confidence to pull off a fragrance like this. All in all, it's simply a fascinating piece of artistry by Andy Tauer that I always look forward to wearing and enjoying- just for me!
07th May, 2017
Being number 14 in a series of 16 reviews on critically acclaimed and noteworthy scents.

Opens with - for me - no sign of any citrus or petitgrain, but rather betrays its origins and genre as an incense fragrance with a resinous accord. Continuing the theme in my personal testing of rarely experiencing all or indeed most of the listed notes (and, I think, after some practice, this is due more to the notes not being there in discernible form rather than my own neophyte status), I do not detect any florals, but rather a gentle incense remains over the first phase and at this point LDDM is pleasant but hardly different from any number of other incense fragrances.

However, once the drydown appears it is absolutely glorious - a melding of cedar, vanilla, perhaps a touch of sandalwood and some very natural-smelling ambergris. These notes work in complete harmony and once established go through the gears in terms of potency, to the point where there is some contiguity with some fougere-type, powerhouse scents. And in fact, I find this a good way of characterising LDDM: the additional sweetness makes it superior for me than obvious oriental comparisons such as Jaipur and Ambre Sultan, but also gives it a kick of potency that brings it just short of, say, Troisieme Homme. The listed spice elements are there, but happily for me, more of a suggestion than prominent and discernible individual notes.

In short, then, LDDM is a completely accessible and highly evocative oriental that does a terrific job of crossing some boundaries, albeit in a minor way. Performance is at least acceptable over the lifetime of the scent, despite a kind of "bell-curve" effect, with the performance dropping off discernibly at about the nine-hour mark. And the quality, that drydown - all in all, terrifically conceived, wonderfully blended, and certainly a must-try.
01st January, 2017
Pleasantly surprised by L'Air du Desert Marocain. A very nice opening that reminded me of Blue Escapade 24 by Krigler. Even though it's not listed in the notes for LADM, I'm smelling a heavy dose of fig with this fragrance. There are also some very smooth woods and wonderful spices that are quite pleasing to my senses. Just a marvelous blend of notes that produces an amazing smelling fragrance. I would definitely love to add this fabulous scent to my collection. Two thumbs way up.
28th December, 2016
I am a novice so I could not possibly explain the olfactory experience but I really like it.
I have been looking for something specific for about 5 years - and this is it (OK, maybe not quite IT but pretty close). It does not evoke the desert to me, but more a forest, and fresh cedar sandalwood breezes. When I was a kid my father travelled to India and brought a small piece of sandalwood back to Russia with him. And obviously, I had never smelled anything like it, it was so shocking and delectable and exotic. I remember sitting in the kitchen, smelling the tiny wood fragment, while staring outside at the green forest, and marvelling at it all. that it kind of like how this smells to me. I think this scent smells great on a woman.
14th October, 2016
A bit of a disappointment from the note pyramid and reviews I read. This opens with a blast of very dry powdered artificial orange drink mix from the Petitgrain. Coriander makes an appearance and as it dries down it takes on a vanilla and dry powder vibe that is very close to natural Ambergris. Ambergris is usually used as a fixative- trouble is it's not fixing anything here. Not a scrubber, but something is off-putting for me.
27th June, 2016
Meriem Show all reviews
United States
L'Air du Desert Marocain is a bit of a disappointment, while being really quite lovely. On the one hand: it is indisputably an elegant, subtle composition, a deft work of olfactory art. On the other: for me at least, the individual notes never quite merge into a cohesive whole; it's almost too protean over the long haul to be wearable or truly interesting. On application, the notes are a clanging masculine shout full of spices, nothing special or distinct, but somehow promising. This initial blast settles quickly, and it becomes a (thankfully) mellower blend of spices and woods against a sweet resinous amber, with just a dash of a subtle and pleasant floral note. True to its name, the scent is somehow very dry. It smells to me like something a djinn would wear -- so also true to its name. But the scent continues to change, with different notes coming to the forefront and receding, rather than blending into something harmonious. At one point, I swear it smells like carpentry, all raw wood, metal, and oil. Yes: on me, it takes a turn as l'Air du Woodshop. Not only does it not seem to blend into a coherent composition, it doesn't blend at all with me. I'm not wearing it; it's hovering over and around me. Wearing l'Air du Desert Marocain is like going on a date with a wonderfully attractive, charming, witty person who really isn't interested in me. It is too polite to not be charming and witty, but is not really engaged in the conversation. L'Air du Desert Marocain is brilliant, beautifully composed, and interesting, but I have no chemistry with it. As a quibble, I have a lot of scent memories attached to North Africa, and the notes of this honestly don't connect with me and make me think "North Africa." Of course, that may be a highly personal evocation, but that failure to connect emotionally with my memories and expectations might be part of why it leaves me a bit less than enthusiastic. On someone else, I might truly appreciate this.
22nd April, 2016 (last edited: 23rd April, 2016)
The spicy/fresh/sweet mix might be the best way to describe Tauer's L'Air du Desert Marocain, a crowd favorite otherwise classified as a woody aromatic. Certainly the woody base is there, topped off by some coriander and cumin to give it some vegetable-ish sharpness/spiciness. The sweetness allegedly comes from the amber per the notes breakdown but it almost strikes me as something different.

To its credit, I can't really compare LADDM to anything else off the top of my head. The fresh spicy aspect of it likens it to Calvin Klein Euphoria Intense, or perhaps another Euphoria flanker, and the sweetness almost makes it lean gourmandly toward Dior Feve Delicieuse, though fans of the latter would surely point of the differences. Still, it at least comes to mind.

It's a good performer, strong in terms of both projection (especially the first hour) and longevity. Redolessence wisely advises that while this can be dressed up, it's not terribly versatile, nor for warmer weather.

Agreeable but not an all-time great to me as it is to many, I probably wouldn't buy a bottle but it's an interesting try.

6 out of 10
01st March, 2016
The opening is promising but within 20 minutes it transitioned into a steady accord that is not quite right for me.
25th February, 2016
rbaker Show all reviews
United Kingdom
The opening is of substantial heaviness and density, with a bright but slightly resinous cumin pairing with a very nicely done coriander. A certain softly spicy sultriness lies over these initial moments, and this all is very finely counterbalanced by a carefully intertwined petitgrain that is just adding a whiff of freshness that is an exquisitely employed counterbalance to the other, richer top note components. Beautifully done.

The drydown predictably turns floral, jasmine predominantly with a touch of rose, and is less complex than the too notes are. The base is woodsy mainly, but a synthetic ambergris tries to add variety. To stay in the marketing image conjured up - rightly or wrongly - this could be construed as a slightly fresh-salty breeze from a salt-crusted chott lake across the hot lands.

The perfomance is superb with fairly strong sillage, excellent projection and a marvelous ten hours of longevity on my skin.

Overall the too notes are a masterfully crafted composition, whilst the rest is not on the same heights as he beginning. Quite overtly synthetic at times, the sublime first part and the great performance secure it a top score with ease. 3.5/5.
13th January, 2016
I ordered this as a blind buy some time ago, based on the nearly universal praise it gets (Luca Turin wore it for his wedding ffs).

I agree it's a very beautiful composition. Rich and balanced, but not at all aggressive. It has that oldschool "full bodied" quality, with dry notes of vetiver/patchouli, soft and rich citruses and smokey woods and resins. All tied together by sweet musk/vanilla. (I must emphasize that last part, there is a LOT of vanilla, for me it works but if you don't like vanilla you may want to keep away).

But i am failing to see why everyone is THAT excited about this? It's likeable, well mannered and very nice. But to my nose it's not unforgettable or irresistable. A great perfume should have one of those two qualities, a masterpiece should have both.
30th November, 2015
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United Kingdom
What first comes to mind is being at a medina in Marrakesh surrounded by stalls and vendors selling a vast array of spices and wooden trinkets. It is midday and the sun is beating down. Warm gusts of wind pass through the medina levitating dust from the ground and mixing it with the smoky, comforting aroma of pipe tobacco drawn and exhaled by wandering old men. A few yards away from the spice stall is a cookie vendor; the essence of vanilla drifts over the various spices displayed upon sun-baked wood. A luxury 3rd world.
11th November, 2015 (last edited: 01st June, 2016)
There’s nothing in this world that smells quite like Andy Tauer’s L’Air du Desert Marocain, except for, well, the actual air above the desert that inspired it, I suppose. Trying to describe how it smells is almost as challenging as wearing it.

The best way I can put it is this: it smells like someone went out to the desert, collected a pile of rough, ancient amber resin, boulders, fallen meteorites, and minerals, sandblasted them all down to a fine dust, loaded it up into a canon and shot it into space. Now imagine you are floating above the earth’s ozone layer, just where the daylight of earth fades into the deep navy of outer space, and you breathe in this space dust. L’Air du Desert Marocain smells like this. Not directly of the sandblasted materials themselves but of the thin, dry, almost electric air surrounding the particles.

Then, later on, it smells of hot, arid paper, with its cedar and vanilla-resin notes.

You are standing in a paper factory. The air conditioning machines are short-circuiting and are blowing the stacks of A4 printer paper off the tables and into the air. The employees look up in dismay – their work for the day, thousands and thousands of sheets of paper floating around their heads! But they breathe in deeply, unable to resist the peculiar pleasure there is to be had in huffing the smell of newly-minted paper and the slightly sweet, dry smell of drying chemicals and lignin it leaves on the air around them.

L’Air du Desert Marocain is a masterpiece of modern perfumery, and perhaps the first perfume I’d recommend to anybody wishing to experience what perfume beyond the shelves of their local Sephora can be. It is an evocative, beautiful travelogue perfume that’s scaled to Laurence of Arabia proportions.

As a personal perfume, though, I find it to be kind of difficult to wear on a regular basis. Its dry spices and resins are so monolithic and all-encompassing - so full of its own personality - that it doesn’t allow me to impose any of my own.

There’s also a sweaty moment in the perfume that always sneaks up on me unawares – the cumin and coriander, I guess. It smells specifically of a male sweat. It’s not unpleasant, just startling. Timbuktu has a similar, ghostly apparition in its development, a lurch so sudden towards the smell of a male (or a male aftershave) that I keep looking around the room to make sure that I am, in fact, still alone.

But I own this beauty, oh yes I do. Sometimes, I just take the bottle cap and huff it throughout the day, like a junkie in withdrawal doling out teaspoons from a bottle of cough syrup. Other days, I commit myself 100% to its mood-shifting, transporting character and put six to eight sprays of it on, all the time knowing that this is all I will smell of for the next 48 hours. Either way, there’s no middle way with a perfume as uncompromising as L’Air du Desert Marocain.
09th September, 2015
Airy, dreamy and peaceful. A meditation. Perfect construct of amber, spices and incense. Truly unique and one of my very favourite fragrances.
05th September, 2015
One of the very best fragrances I have ever had the pleasure to wear. Incredibly well constructed, well blended spicey wood, perhaps even oriental, composition from Andy Tauer. I had heard and read all the rave reviews and finally picked up a sample. I was stunned, to say the least. I get an opening accord of eastern spices, difficult to pick any one of them out on it's own. The middle is a bit of rose over cedar and vetiver. There's also a touch of sweetness to the middle, somewhat caramel like, yet very faint.

Great fall-winter fragrance. My only complaint is that I didn't get the longevity of many other reviewers, but it may be the local humidity or perhaps my sample is old. I need to order this one. Fantastic scent.
26th August, 2015