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  1. #1

    Default Why aren't many blind testings performed?

    Lets face it, label matters. If I've had success with house A, I'll assume that their latest creation will grow on me even if I don't like it at first. If the same product comes from house B, which I have disliked in the past, I'll assume that the new creation is merely an acrid brew, probably heavily laced with synthetics.

    In the world of wine, label prejudice is acknowledged and blind tastings are a popular way of eliminating this bias. Why aren't blind scent reviews and comparisons more common in the world of EdT's?

  2. #2

    Default Re: Why aren't many blind testings performed?

    I'd love to blind test frags, then I'd test more than I already do. Some frags I always walk by due to something like a really tacky bottle or boring name... that's a shame really... The stores should set up some blind testing for their customers.

  3. #3

    Default Re: Why aren't many blind testings performed?

    Blind tastings are almost always set up by a group of enthhusiasts and rarely by a store. The reason is they want a customer to want to buy everything in the store and if you're swayed by label so much the better. No store wants to see the cheaply priced bottle of Argentinian Malbec outduel a French first growth.
    Same would hold true for a department store. The last thing they would want is for Old Spice to outduel Creed. A store and/or a house has only something to lose and little to gain by doing this. A blind test is the truest form of letting your own sensibility guide you and is a wonderful, valuable thing. It just needs to be set up with a few enthusiasts near you or at organized industry events like Sniffapalooza. Or you could do what a couple of people are doing on the SotD and sending each other labelled vials without telling each other what they are until they have worn them for the day.
    Lots of ways to skin a scent here.
    More writing on fragrance by me to be found at http://www.cafleurebon.com/

  4. #4

    Default Re: Why aren't many blind testings performed?

    Why place the onus on stores? It would be interesting to see a couple of the better reviewers/writers of this board sending numbered samples back and forth for review. This is the sort of idea is why the blog section of this site exists.

  5. #5

    Default Re: Why aren't many blind testings performed?

    Quote Originally Posted by studdg View Post
    Why place the onus on stores? It would be interesting to see a couple of the better reviewers/writers of this board sending numbered samples back and forth for review. This is the sort of idea is why the blog section of this site exists.
    Now that is a very good idea.

    Because indeed, no matter how loud you shout it, label matters.
    Last edited by Stereotomy; 14th April 2008 at 07:58 PM.
    Wanted: a cap of Bvlgari Thé Vert

    Wanted: L' Artisan Timbuktu or Fragonard Concerto

    Feel free to visit Polderposh - a young up & coming Dutch fragrance blog!

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Why aren't many blind testings performed?

    Quote Originally Posted by studdg View Post
    Why place the onus on stores? It would be interesting to see a couple of the better reviewers/writers of this board sending numbered samples back and forth for review. This is the sort of idea is why the blog section of this site exists.
    Actually, that's a great idea and might expose people to scents they would not otherwise try. BUT (you knew that was coming, didn't you?):

    Let's say I get a scent and think it's great and it also smells great on me.

    Let's say I find out that scent is Paris Hilton's Heir.

    The chances of me buying it would be zero. Nothing about me, my life, or my politics relates in any way to the Paris Hilton name. In fact, my own embarassment about saying that it was a Paris Hilton frag would keep me from wearing it. Would I stash a bottle in the hopes that in 20 years the Paris Hilton name would become respectable and people would scream for her to bring back that fabulous frag from the 00s? Probably.

    So, why you may get more unbiased reviews by a blind study (and I really am in favor of that), on the purchasing level the label does have an effect.
    Brent

    Catherine Deneuve: "You should put scent where you like to be kissed."


  7. #7

    Default Re: Why aren't many blind testings performed?

    Quote Originally Posted by studdg View Post
    Why place the onus on stores? It would be interesting to see a couple of the better reviewers/writers of this board sending numbered samples back and forth for review. This is the sort of idea is why the blog section of this site exists.
    A few years ago I sent 6 numbered samples to 5 different members here. Each person got the same samples numbered 1-6. Every week they would do one sample and post their thoughts, notes they smell, and also try to guess what it was. It was a lot of fun for me and the people involved. I've thought about doing something similar.
    I believe I called it the mystery vial challenge. I also sent some free decants if people guessed the right fragrance each week.
    Oriscent, AgarAura Pure Ouds, Creed, LIDGE, Patou Pour Homme, tons of niche and rare stuff for sale!
    http://www.basenotes.net/threads/253...er-100-items!!

  8. #8

    Default Re: Why aren't many blind testings performed?

    True, of course perfumes are also largely about the feeling of exclusivity, luxury and believe it or not, branding.

    I think very few people can disconnect the smell fo the fragrance from those properties. On Basenotes we tend to scoff at celebrity endorsed fragrances, but we tend to fall for niche and snob marketing.

    Such is life.
    Wanted: a cap of Bvlgari Thé Vert

    Wanted: L' Artisan Timbuktu or Fragonard Concerto

    Feel free to visit Polderposh - a young up & coming Dutch fragrance blog!

  9. #9

    Default Re: Why aren't many blind testings performed?

    I pretty much always do blind sampling when I order spray vials. The results are always suprising, will me usually liking what I expected to be indifferent to, and disliking what I expected. The power of brand is such that we can often convince ourselves to like things we would otherwise dislike.

  10. #10

    Default Re: Why aren't many blind testings performed?

    Or in case of Paris Hilton, dislike what we could otherwise like.
    Wanted: a cap of Bvlgari Thé Vert

    Wanted: L' Artisan Timbuktu or Fragonard Concerto

    Feel free to visit Polderposh - a young up & coming Dutch fragrance blog!

  11. #11

    Default Re: Why aren't many blind testings performed?

    Y'all might be shocked to read a thread(16 pages long!) on a cigar board I frequent. A well respected member started a blind test of ten cigars sent to ten other members. They each paid $100 for the ten unlabeled cigars. Believe me, they got more than their money's worth as all ten were premium cigars, some aged many years(usually add's to the flavor) and some from Cuba.

    The reviewers were to smoke one a week and report back to the member that sent them out. They rated these unknown cigars as to construction, smell(unlit), burn, ash, flavor, taste, cost, whether they were premiums, average, or 'dog-rockets', and country of origin.

    Many cigar smokers think they can recognize a Cuban(thought to be the highest 'niche' cigar by most) cigar. Man, were most of them surprised by the results. All the reviews and the actual results were posted and there were many embarrassed smokers. A few got several correct but for the most part, they were off. Some premiums were thought to be 'dog-rockets'(subjective yea) and many Cuban cigars were thought to have been made in Nicaragua, Honduras, Dominican Republic, etc. Yes, branding(knowing the house that made them and the country of origin) would have made all the difference in the world.

    Here is just one of the beauties:



    That's a Cuban Bolivar Gold Medal cigar. This guy nailed it:
    ********* said: I had a lot of trouble with this one. The cigar started off with a mild nutty flavor and initially reminded me of Don Pepin of some sort. As the cigar progressed, the nuttiness was accompanied by a tobacco flavor similar to cigar #3 which started some cogs turning in my head. Some hints of leather crept in throughout the smoke and in the latter half there was lots of spice. I am not sure if I was just having an off night but pinpointing the origin and marca has me pretty baffled this time. At points in the smoke I was reminded of flavors I have found in RyJ Cazadores and the vitola was almost right, but not quite there. At other times I was brought back to the bolivar profile, catching hints of things I have tasted in the 06 BGM batch but missing the complexity I have experienced with the BGM. Overall I enjoyed the smoke regardless, and I would smoke it again.

    ******** guessed: Origin: Cuban - Price: Premium - Age: 1 year - Marca: Bolivar Gold Medal - Rating: 7/10
    This guy was way off:
    ************* said: Nice, dark brown wrapper on this one. Measures just over 5/8” in diameter putting this one at a 40 / 41 ring. Length, sans cap, is a tiny fraction over 6”; call it 6 1/16” or about 154mm. Some spice comes through in pre-light tastes, along with solid, mature tobacco tastes. Draw is a little tight but it’s the smoking that counts, right?

    Started off with a nice, smooth, creamy almost buttery note that gave way at about the ¼ point to a very pronounced, grassy taste that carried through to the end. Started to burn hot, perhaps a little bitter, maybe even a slightly metallic taste in the back third. Burn and draw were acceptable, but not perfect; a couple of touch ups were required.

    Overall, this was “OK” but not “great”

    *********** guessed: Origin: Nicaraguan - Price: Everyday - Age: 2 years - Marca: Hoyo de Monterrey - Rating: 6/10
    Dan
    [SIZE=3][SIZE=2]"We are fast approaching the stage of the ultimate inversion: the stage where the government is free to do anything it pleases, while the citizens may act only by permission; which is the stage of the darkest periods of human history, the stage of rule by brute force." Ayn Rand...[/SIZE][/SIZE]

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  12. #12

    Default Re: Why aren't many blind testings performed?

    I've been doing sample swaps with one other basenoter and we have been doing everything blind - that is we just number the sample bottles and pick the ones we like the most! It's really surprising and an eyeopener!! For example, I tried Pino Silvestre - thought it smelled like something very niche... but what a surprise! I suggest y'all give it a try!! (the blind sampling... and perhaps the Pino too! )
    Last edited by Schachman; 15th April 2008 at 12:27 AM.
    "Faites des bêtises, mais faites les avec enthousiasme !" Colette

  13. #13

    Default Re: Why aren't many blind testings performed?

    I'm all for a game of mystery scents. It'd be facinating to see what I've learned and what I haven't yet learned.

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