So ephemeral it's tough to get a good fix on De Bachmakov. Which is probably why the reviews seem to be all over the place with this one. I detected a faintly figgy note hiding behind a faintly aromatic greenery, before transitioning into talc-like freesia for most of its rather brief lifespan. It's so soft and restrained, you might be better off smelling freshly-shampooed hair or laundered clothes. In other words, INFURIATING.
After an invigorating and realistic bergamot top note, De Bachmakov settles into a transparent, understated arrangement of crisp herbs (especially the shiso in the pyramid) , cedar, citrus and nutmeg that wears very close to the skin. I agree strongly with rickbr’s observation that De Bachmakov smells much like the work of nose Celine Éllena’s celebrated father, Jean-Claude. As common with many of Éllena Père’s compositions, De Bachmakov’s overall contours read like a gloss on his magnificent Déclaration (itself closely allied with Edmond Roudnitska’s Eau d’Hermès).
De Bachmakov’s cedar/citrus axis owes much to Déclaration, but De Bachmakov disposes with Déclaration’s leather and animalic cumin, relying on nutmeg for its spice component and on a clean musk for warmth. The result is very sheer and luminous but without any of the quietly ambiguous animal pungency that enlivens Déclaration and the more successful of its offspring. De Bachmakov winds up feeling comparatively cold and sterile, especially as the citrus and shiso fall away.
The drydown accord of cedar and white musk that remains isn’t just vanishingly faint, but also disappointingly hollow – more like a trace of shampoo or body wash than the late stages of a fully realized fragrance. De Bachmakov’s opening is persuasive, but the composition would have to last much longer and wind up someplace more interesting to make me want to wear it often.
This is a scent in three very distinct phases.
1. Green leaves and a toasted-nut chord. Green fig is fairly prominent. Like the leaf, not sure about the toasted nut.
2. Prolific use of spice. Nutmeg is listed but it smells much more like cinnamon. Not a favorite note in the spice repertoire.
3. A lovely, delicate floral-wood chord. So beautiful, but very restrained and fleeting.
In my opinion only #3 is good, and it is so ephemeral that I can't muster enthusiasm for the scent overall.
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De Bachmakov is really something special. It begins with shizo. Shizo and bergamot. In the air, it feels so crisp, cool, light and airy, but there's a warm, sweet layer of amber and nutmeg that sits closer to the skin. It's almost as if the shizo obscures them.
I only have two concerns about De Bachmakov. #1: Is it too polite? Too nice, perhaps? De Bachmakov sure is friendly, maybe even charming, but I wish it were just a bit more flirty. And my second concern is the price. This is a spendy little devil... except that there's nothing devilish in here. There's just a gently overwhelming niceness.
Bottom line: De Bachmakov is gorgeous.
De Bachmakov opens with a fresh near bitter green sharp aromatic fig and bergamot combo. As the composition enters the early heart phase the green fig somewhat settles down to allow the bergamot to dominate as slowly a woody vetiver-like undertone permeates the sharp citrus. During the late dry-down the bergamot and bitter-green fig never completely disappear, instead they now support the soft woody accord that takes on the mantle of star through the finish. Projection is average to slightly above average, as is longevity at 7-9 hours on skin.
De Bachmakov is a composition that while relatively bare-bones is quite skillfully executed by Ms. Ellena. On the one hand its piercingly sharp green nature can come off as cold and clinical, but once you get used to it the overall fragrance profile is actually quite captivating. The composition is quite linear, but as the aromatic green fig softens during the dry-down the composition has an opening to let its subtle woody facets shine through. The bottom line is the $230 per 90ml bottle De Bachmakov is quite the hard sell at its relatively expensive cost per milliliter, but while the composition can be quite clinical, linear and spare it does smell good earning a "very good" 3.5 stars out of 5 and is indeed recommended.
Spring in the Arctic
An unusual fragrance with a rather non-informational name… De Bachmakov. The name doesn’t quite give a clue to the inspiration of the fragrance which is the coming of spring to the Arctic.
There’s a light oily note in the beginning – purposeful oil not an interloper. The bergamot note is not strong in a sillage sort of way but it does have a presence – and offers a stability to the abstractness of the accord…. What comes through most strongly to me is the mineral note…. It’s a chalky note but it feels damp (the oil) not dry… or maybe it is a little too rounded. The second most prominent note is shiso leaves: This shiso green quality is quite identifiable, and its inclusion, supported by a weaker freesia and nutmeg, changes the cool mineral character of this fragrance away from the "cold and distant minerality" of the Terre d’Hermes genre to a warmer, more positive, more liquid minerality. De Baschmakoff thus becomes warm and tangible, and if this scent is to represent spring in the arctic, I can quite agree with that – it is pretty much the olfactory memory I have of spring in the north woods. The melting of the ice and snow, the opening up of the rivers and streams, the Sun melting the lichen speckled ice off the rocks… ice that had been buried under three feet of snow: the promises that come when the dirty whiteness of crusted snow soaks up the sunlight and morphs into the clearest of all possible liquids.
Out of the melting landscape, there emerges a strong freesia note – so strong that I would call it a worthy of a white-floral fragrance rather than a representational environmental note. The freesia is quite lasting. Right at the point where I am beginning to wonder if the freesia note is ever going to change, a cedar note shows up and plays tag-you’re-it with the freesia note for a while – a rather intriguing development… I’d say that the drydown has happened when the tag game changes to a solid freesia-cedar accord that lasts for a good long drydown –
Who’d a’ thunk? The shift from oily chalk to a white floral freesia to a freesia-cedar drydown is a turn I had not seen coming. This is a truly surprising fragrance, and quite wearable. Personally I find it – because of the freesia – more feminine than unisex. It is quite a subtly beautiful fragrance with decent sillage and good longevity.
Pros: Subtly and interesting. Chalk, cedar, and freesia.
Cons: Sometimes a bit too subtle."
I had high expectations of this after reading all the positive reviews on blogs, but was very dissapointed. I think it smells like lemon Pine Sol.
At least I saved myself the $160 it costs for a full bottle.
Funny, there's no tea note listed and yet to me De Bachmakov is a straightforward bright clean crisp green tea scent. I guess that's an illusion created by the combination of zesty bergamot and dew-cool freesia. It's delightful but frankly a little boring - I had expected more complexity from the notes.
De Bachmakov by Different Company - Initially, one is treated to a cool freshness. Bergamot, with its herbaceous bitterness, coriander leaves, with their enveloping greenness tinged with a slightly medicinal and rank undertone, and shiso leaves, with their green apple mintiness, similar to a fresh, cumin-like crispness, all commingle to formulate a somewhat bracing accord. A faint juniper and angelica vibe, with a tinge of terpenic linalool, adds a boozy illusion. This exhilarating opening transitions to the floral heart. Freesia, with its airy sweetness and strawberry-like fruitness, along with jasmine, with its tutti-frutti air, cloak the pronounced greenness of the opening. Magical aldehydes adds a brillance to the florals, and fosters a clean and green undertone to their sweetish sensation. Segueing to the awaiting base, a robust Virginia cedar, with its cedar chest aspect, interplays with a comforting nutmeg, with its cinnamon-like air. An pleasing backdrop of craie douce, with its musk-like softness together with woody and mineral nuances, enhances the warm blend. A comforting drydown ensues. Despite the somewhat innovative and original aspects of this composition, its projection, apart from the opening, and longevity, perhaps 4 hours, are severely lacking, and force my hand with a "Neutral" rating.
I agree with the Redneck Perfumisto's point of view about the existence of a certain resemblance about this luminous fragrance and the airy, immaculate and citric-laundry traditional feel exuding by fragrances as Sel de Vetiver and Divine bergamote. The chord of orange, greens and bergamot is an Ellena's fabric mark. The element that links these fragrances is that citric laundry Victorian factor made of bergamot, cedar and hesperides together with green aromatic notes as coriander for instance that is present in De Bachmakov. The note of nutmeg here is linked with mandarin and bergamot in order to produce a citric-aquatic orangy and spicy effect. There is a sort of aquatic floral accord made of freesia and shiso leaves that imprints a watery and transparent vibe to the all whole composition and that is present till a middle stage of the development after which a sort of almost anosmic and neutral cloudy white feel takes the scene with its slightly woodsy vibe, turning the juice out too linear and flat (probably the effect exuded by craie reminds the woodsy soft whiteness of musk). I don't smell a structured woody base in here while is in the air a certain level of greenness and spiciness on the side of the starring citrus. The final smell is a citric and a bit detergent mossy scent that lasts few hours close on my skin.
16th December, 2011 (last edited: 28th April, 2015)
Tarragon. That's what I thought that I was detecting upon initial application of The Different Company DE BACHMAKOV. Shiso leaves appear to be the note which imparts wafts of that particular, familiar greenish scent to this fine perfume.
I am reminded vaguely of Isabella Rossellini MANIFESTO, which has a similar overall aesthetic, but unfortunately is fatally marred by its probably entirely synthetic--and to me poisonous--components. I owned MANIFESTO for about a decade and finally swapped it away because I found it utterly unwearable. DE BACHMAKOV offers an excellent example of why people turn to niche perfume: no poison here whatsoever, just a pleasing blend of green notes, wood, light spices and light woods, which conspire to produce a truly enjoyable composition perfect for summer and spring.
I recommend this composition to guys and gals alike who appreciate a very natural-smelling clean and green cologne. Simple yet satisfying.
If someone used to Jean Claude Ellena tried this unlalebeled, this person would think it's one of his fragrances. Celina seems either to have the fondness for the same style and aromas or to be heavy influentiated by his dad's works. De Bachmakov reminds me of some elements that Ellena the dad worked in Kelly Caleche and Terre d'Hermés. Here you get the floral spring nuances of kelly caleche and the iris notes wrapped in what seems to be a fruity opening reminiscent of green apples. As the fragrance develops, the green floral aspects fades to give space for a cedar and musk base similar to the one of Terre d'Hermés, but with more focus on the dry woodiness of cedar and less focus in the mineral musky aspect of Terre. De Bachmakov seems to tie very well the two parts, altough it fails to produce a scent with an intense sillage and longevity. If you don't mind to apply a lot or reapply, it's an interesting fragrance.
Tried a sample today and found the first hour incredibly crisp and invigorating - a wonderful mixture of green, citrus and "cold", building upon the usual note of freshness you get in ctirus. It evokes a bracing morning walk in the woods in late winter. During the middle notes the "cold" evaporates leaving the pine-citrus combination. It doesn't project much, and longevity was about 3-4 hours overall, but the smell is intoxicating throughout.
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This is certainly one of TDC's best. Similarities to Sel de Vétiver, Un Parfum de Charmes et Feuilles, Un Parfum de Alleurs et Fleurs, and Divine Bergamote are all palpable, yet the fragrance stands on its own as a novel creation. It has an immaculately clean and fresh feel, which is completely natural and pure. The fragrance opens with an impressive mix of cool, green, and herbal accords, which evokes fir trees, cold water, and brisk air. If Chanel no. 19 is somehow an herbal counterpart to no. 5, then this is the analogus light, citrusy, modern counterpart in relation to no. 5 Eau Première. In some ways, I find de Bachmakov to be a lighter and more feminine version of Fou d'Absinthe. Notably, there are no off-notes that I can detect.
My only complaint could possibly be that the longevity isn't particularly good, and the projection only moderate except at the beginning. There are wisps of fragrance for several hours, but never a substantial sillage. For many, this may not be a problem at all. The drydown is pleasant but faint. On the other hand, it is magnificently clean and clear, leaving no unpleasant residues behind. If longevity was the price, then I say it's a worthy tradeoff.
Quite unisex, there is no reason not to wear this at any time of the year, or under any circumstances. It has the versatility of a sport fragrance, but the sensibility of a niche feminine or high-end designer citrus masculine.
It's a glorious fragrance, and very hard for me to stop spraying and stop sniffing. The only reason I'm not giving it 5/5 is that the longevity is likely to bother those who don't like carrying a bottle around to refresh. Those who are used to things with a bit more oomph may find it a bit quiet. But I think it's perfect in that sense - a cool and gentle mountain breeze on a clear day.