I'm sorry, but this is the most awful perfume I have ever tried! Unbelievably sweet and sickly, this chocolate patchouli toffee biscuity creation nearly made me physically sick. I've realised I'm not a fan of Jacques Polge perfumes in general, (Chanel No18 being an exception) but Coromandel (along with Bel Respiro) is the the worst so far. It obviously has a lot of fans, but I can honestly say I have never smelled anything so sweet and nasty.
Dark green earth patchouli and nothing else - hateful juice!
Judging by the notes of and Noses behind this scent I expected to love it, but boy was I wrong! The opening blast of Coromandel felt almost painful, not only to nostrils but also palate, and the sweetish run-of-the-mill drydown wasn't much better. The overall impression was stagnant and "too cheap for a Chanel" (especially as it is not just a plain Chanel but an "exclusif"). I like my patchouli dirty and earthy, not sanitized like this.
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It`s hard to find exactly what i dislike here, but Coromandel is a composition that doesn`t create me comfort or makes me feel elegant or sexy or pleases me. On skin, there`s something between the patchouli and amber that should be like music but instead it`s like nails on blackboard. The earthy, powdery and complex aura of patchouli gets ruined by a wrong amber and i feel frustrated and peeved everytime i wear it. The rose and vanilla doesn`t help to mask or harmonize the main idea. The rose, specially, creates a plastic impression with the amber that seems to go in and out of focus, just like an annyoing note poking the nose.
I prefer other variations of this idea - for a luxury, outrageously expensive one, Richwood does the service much better creating a smooth evolution, keeping the structure and avoiding the amber common place. Zino Davidoff is very close to Coromandel, but uses the amber with more wisdom. And you also have the dark, bitter chocolate patchouly version on Borneo 1834 by Serge Lutens. It`s a good luxury addition to the les exclusif line and one that it`s adherent with the austere fragrant vision of vintage chanels. But it has a lapse of judgment for me in the choose of the base note. I decided to wear it again after an year to see if i changed my mind on this one, but honestly i don`t miss it and i think that i`ll not miss its smell soon.
EDIT: After 5 hours the amber aspect faded away and i got a base of a skincent vanillic aroma of subtle incense nuances. It`s quite pleasant, but discomfort with the first 5 hours is enough to keep me away of wearing it. Since those impressions will rely of your scensibility to what is used in the fragrance, you may have a very different experience, maybe much more pleasant, than mine.
04th July, 2011 (last edited: 06th July, 2011)
One of the Exclusifs I was really looking forward to, but for me Coromandel turned out to be an absolute disaster! On me, it turned into an incredibly sweet and sickly, cheap-smelling chocolate-toffee mess, which with no exageration, made me heave (the original parfum version of Vent Vert is the only other fragrance to have done that to me!).
From some of the reviews here, it would seem Coromandel reacts quite strangely on me, and I'd like to smell it on someone else to see if I get what other reviewers see in it. I would definitely recommend potential buyers to try Coromandel first, in case this does the same thing on them.
This was truly awful on me, chocolate/patchouli combo like a club to the head. So sad!