I’m still trying to determine whether or not I’m disappointed in Guerlain’s Derby (new formulation). I’ve been wearing it from a 5ml decant for a few months, and when I first tested it I was pretty amazed and was sure I was going to love everything about it. The opening in particular is stunning and unique and reminds me of (this is strange) an old cork bulletin board I had in my basement bedroom as a teenager, which had such a strong smoky, woody scent that my entire room smelled like it. It was very cool down there even in the summer, so that’s where I’d spend most of my time, reading. (and entertaining girlfriends)
Many fond memories….
This opening fades pretty quickly and the drydown, so far, I find to be an uninspiring and lackluster blend of fairly generic spices I find very familiar, formulaic, annoying, and which I associate with “serious 80’s” men’s fragrances in general, which to me, represent all that is not chic. Specifically the carnation, which is one of my favorite notes generally speaking and one that I love in Equipage and CdG Red: Carnation, but which in Derby seems much too flat and cinnamon-like and not fresh and floral enough. This not only cheapens the entire fragrance, but in my opinion robs it of the vitality of the opening, and brings it into the realm of the serious and stuffy, again, the anti-chic.
So, even given how much I love the opening, I can pretty well say it’s a disappointment.
I've never smelled the original.