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  1. #1

    Default The Guide and Guerlain

    I'm not too surprised that The Guide gives out ★★★★★ to Après L'Ondée, Chamade, Derby, Eau de Guerlain, Habit Rouge, L'Heure Bleue, Jicky, Mitsouko, Nahéma, Shalimar and Vol de Nuit. Or, perhaps Eau de Guerlain surprised me a bit. Felt very just-citrusy last time I tried it. (BTW: that means that 12,5 percent of the top-rated perfumes are from Guerlain - impresses even me, or is he as biased as I am?)

    And I may not be too surprised either that it gives only ★ to Vetiver Extrême. Though it's not THAT bad if you ask me (but no: the soapy herbal notes are not superb).

    Also not too surprising to me that all the Aqua Allegorias are in the low end - I never liked many of them, really, or the whole concept.

    But it gives me some food for thought that it only gives ★★ to Spiritueuse Double Vanille - the one I started to rave about last year on BN. I haven't got my copy of the book yet (just peeked into the index on Amazon), so I cannot read the actual reviews. Maybe he doesn't like the 'sour' note of its vanilla? He finds it too stodgy or dense or simple? I'm excited to read...

    And why give ★★★★ to Plus Que Jamais Guerlain? It's just modern, skanky amber. Plus: Am I the only one who can't find Véga in the book? Even if Sous le Vent is there?

    In the news section of my Guerlain site I have shown the Guide's classification of all the Guerlain scents (see links below).

  2. #2
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    Default Re: The Guide and Guerlain

    When I was reading The Guide - I really got excited about a lot of the Guerlain fragrances. Turin & Sanchez do love many of them, and yet also call a few downright horrible (Champs Elysees, etc). During these parts of reading The Guide, inevitably I would think of you Mr. Guerlain. I kept saying to myself, well Mr. Guerlain does talk so highly of this scent...I guess he was right.

    I was a little bummed by his two star rating of SDV, but overall I think he paid a lot of respect and admiration for the house as a whole. Rightly so. Guerlain has continued to impress me, since I have been here at Basenotes.
    Last edited by mikeperez23; 29th April 2008 at 12:39 PM.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: The Guide and Guerlain

    Meh...I agree with the SDV rating (which Sanchez reviewed btw, not Turin (if it matters)). I think its evident that Guerlain is Dr. Turin's fav house (well, maybe in the running with Chanel), so it wasn't a surprise to see most of their classics do quite well.

    I think some of the harder-to-find bottles were left out, but there's a list running of stuff that was left out...maybe we'll come across it in the 2nd edition.

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    Default Re: The Guide and Guerlain

    Quote Originally Posted by mikeperez23 View Post
    When I was reading The Guide - I really got excited about a lot of the Guerlain fragrances. Turin & Sanchez do love many of them, and yet also call a few downright horrible (Champs Elysees, etc). During these parts of reading The Guide, inevitably I would think of you Mr. Guerlain. I kept saying to myself, well Mr. Guerlain does talk so highly of this scent...I guess he was right.

    I was a little bummed by his two star rating of SDV, but overall I think he paid a lot of respect and admiration for the house as a whole. Rightly so. Guerlain has continued to impress me, since I have been here at Basenotes.

    Guerlain has earned the praise they have received by creating so many 1st class fragrances. I agree with the 1 star for Vetiver Extreme and the 2 star for Double Vanille. I renamed it "No Spirit Half Vanille" for it's diluted short lasting vanilla note. Note Vanillee by M.Micallef is a 5 star vanilla, and once you experience it, Double Half Vanilla just doesn't cut it.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: The Guide and Guerlain

    I think Turin reviewed SDV ("LT" according to my book) and said that it magnified all of the negative aspects of vanilla - the dissonant fruity, rum-like notes of the vanilla pod.

    I have not tried SDV yet, so I can't comment on the rating. But it is still on my list to sample despite of the rating. I certainly don't agree with many of the ratings in the book, but still enjoy reading other people's point of view.
    Last edited by petruccijc; 29th April 2008 at 02:16 PM.
    Please feel free to check out my Swap Thread - Patou pour Homme, L'Instant de Guerlain PH Extreme, Dior Homme Intense, Pure Malt, Pure Coffee and many more! Click Here For My Swap Thread

  6. #6

    Default Re: The Guide and Guerlain

    What I found most interesting about Turin and Sanchez' Guerlain reviews is that they question who is the author of the fragrances from Samsara on. Yes, it hard for me to believe that the creator or Vetiver, Habit Rouge, Chamade, etc would be responsible for Champs Elysees, Mahora, a lot of the Acqua Allegorias. They just seem so crude compared with the earlier creations. I found the change came when Samsara was released. I remember reading something about Jean-Paul saying that he finally felt free of the work of his ancestors and was now creating his own compositions. My thought was: well please get back to the traditional Guerlain approach to the art. Not that Samsara is a bad fragrance - it is just that it is loud, somewhat crude and lacks the delicacy and radiance of the best of his work.
    By the way, M. Guerlain, thanks for the beautiful website!

  7. #7

    Default Re: The Guide and Guerlain

    Quote Originally Posted by opalsdad View Post
    Yes, it hard for me to believe that the creator or Vetiver, Habit Rouge, Chamade, etc would be responsible for Champs Elysees, Mahora, a lot of the Acqua Allegorias. They just seem so crude compared with the earlier creations. ... By the way, M. Guerlain, thanks for the beautiful website!
    Thanks for your praise! I dig you on your thought that it seems that something went wrong for Jean-Paul Guerlain in 1989. But then we got Héritage - a true masterpiece. And - that is if you ask me - Chamade pour Homme and Spiritueuse Double Vanille.

    Guerlain are known for rather dark, gloomy or melancholic scents. Yes, I think they should continue on that path...

  8. #8

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    Default Re: The Guide and Guerlain

    I agree with many of the Guerlain reviews in The Guide however I disagree on Eau de Geurlain which I think is actually the weakest (and wierdest) of les eaux. I suspect it got the higher mark just because it varies from the traditional edc formula which maybe is seen as a little boring? I think Imperiale is the quintessential cologne - the classic recipe in its best incarnation. Also, I think SDV is a marvel because it draws out those slightly unusual aspects of vanilla. It is not just the cliched done-a-million-times standard vanilla but an exploration of its other facets too. A wonderful perfume worthy of at least four or more likely five stars to me.
    "Don’t try to be original. Be simple. Be good technically, and if there is something in you, it will come out. ” - Henri Matisse.

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  9. #9

    Default Re: The Guide and Guerlain

    There are a lot of problems in the guide, and it's certainly not "definitive" as the authors claim. One example is that the authors don't even seem to know that there are two Montanas for men, the red box and the blue box, and so the review makes no sense. All they had to do was to look at BN's directory and they would have seen the two different Montanas listed there. I'm thinking of creating a thread devoted to the mistakes in the book, but I want to get a lot of examples together, and someone might beat me to it anyway.

  10. #10

    Default Re: The Guide and Guerlain

    I will get my copy tomorrow, so by then I'll probably be better suited for discussing all this. Until then...

  11. #11

    Default Re: The Guide and Guerlain

    Quote Originally Posted by Mr. Guerlain View Post
    Guerlain are known for rather dark, gloomy or melancholic scents. Yes, I think they should continue on that path...
    You certainly hit the nail on the head with your description. All the happy fragrances out there make me shudder.

  12. #12
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    Default Re: The Guide and Guerlain

    I like Turin and agree with him about many things, including his high regard for the House of Guerlain. I do, however, think he is wrong about SDV. What's wrong with the hint of rum in some vanillas? That, I think, is simply a matter of preference.

    I find SDV very soothing and comfortable. There's room in my life for that. Maybe a professional reviewer just needs more exciting stuff to get his juices flowing.
    Last edited by JaimeB; 29th April 2008 at 10:55 PM.
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  13. #13

    Default Re: The Guide and Guerlain

    Quote Originally Posted by mikeperez23 View Post
    During these parts of reading The Guide, inevitably I would think of you Mr. Guerlain. I kept saying to myself, well Mr. Guerlain does talk so highly of this scent...I guess he was right.
    Hahahahaha!!

    I had this same experience. M. Guerlain, you are tres celebre!

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    Default Re: The Guide and Guerlain

    I would third my great curiosity as to Mr. Guerlain's opinion of the reviews!

    I find my sampling and exploraiton to be greatly enhanced by the guide - esp. for Guerlain and Chanel (about as much as when I joined BN!)
    Last edited by Bromo33333; 30th April 2008 at 12:16 AM.
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  15. #15
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    Default Re: The Guide and Guerlain

    Quote Originally Posted by Mr. Guerlain View Post
    I'm not too surprised that The Guide gives out ★★★★★ to Après L'Ondée, Chamade, Derby, Eau de Guerlain, Habit Rouge, L'Heure Bleue, Jicky, Mitsouko, Nahéma, Shalimar and Vol de Nuit. Or, perhaps Eau de Guerlain surprised me a bit. Felt very just-citrusy last time I tried it. (BTW: that means that 12,5 percent of the top-rated perfumes are from Guerlain - impresses even me, or is he as biased as I am?)

    And I may not be too surprised either that it gives only ★ to Vetiver Extrême. Though it's not THAT bad if you ask me (but no: the soapy herbal notes are not superb).

    Also not too surprising to me that all the Aqua Allegorias are in the low end - I never liked many of them, really, or the whole concept.

    But it gives me some food for thought that it only gives ★★ to Spiritueuse Double Vanille - the one I started to rave about last year on BN. I haven't got my copy of the book yet (just peeked into the index on Amazon), so I cannot read the actual reviews. Maybe he doesn't like the 'sour' note of its vanilla? He finds it too stodgy or dense or simple? I'm excited to read...

    And why give ★★★★ to Plus Que Jamais Guerlain? It's just modern, skanky amber. Plus: Am I the only one who can't find Véga in the book? Even if Sous le Vent is there?

    In the news section of my Guerlain site I have shown the Guide's classification of all the Guerlain scents (see links below).
    You forgot to mention one of the best Guerlains ever made: Guet-Apens/Attrape-Coeur (made by Mathilde Laurent), which is included in the top 10 oriental list.

    Sous le Vent is in there and gets 4 stars, which it deserves, if not 5.

    Another thing I found interesting is that Habit Rouge was reworked by Edouard Fléchier (Malle's Une Rose, Dior Poison, Montana Parfum de Homme 1989, Montana Parfum de Peau, etc) who also spent two years working on the new Mitsouko. He probably did Derby as well, but I don't know that for a fact.

    I don't read his reviews to find out whether or not I agree with them all, but I do agree with most of them to some extent, and also find SdV to be a weak effort. It's better than most of what's out there, but it's not a particularly interesting composition.

    From The Emperor of Scent:

    "Guerlain is famous for its vanilla and the reason it's always been so good is because Jacques Guerlain never used the pure stuff. "Guerlain used to buy his vanillin from de l'Aire, whose first vanillins were all yellow with rubbish, infected with all sorts of things, smelt of guaiacol and other things. Then de l'Aire improved the extraction method, and suddenly he was producing a very nice, pure vanillin. And Guerlain didn't want it. He actually paid more money for the dirty vanillin infected with crap. It was more interesting, and de l'Aire thus carried on making dirty vanillin for years."

    I'm sure Turin designated a low rating to SdV because its use of vanilla is nothing like what is indicated above.

    Quote Originally Posted by Bigsly View Post
    There are a lot of problems in the guide, and it's certainly not "definitive" as the authors claim. One example is that the authors don't even seem to know that there are two Montanas for men, the red box and the blue box, and so the review makes no sense. All they had to do was to look at BN's directory and they would have seen the two different Montanas listed there. I'm thinking of creating a thread devoted to the mistakes in the book, but I want to get a lot of examples together, and someone might beat me to it anyway.
    He reviewed the original Montana in his 94 guide. Yes, he knows the difference. I can guarantee you they aren't going to review everything...fortunately.

    He did review Parfum de Peau (Montana), which is probably the best fragrance from that house
    Last edited by pluran; 30th April 2008 at 01:11 AM.

  16. #16
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    Default Re: The Guide and Guerlain

    Ah yea, "The Guide" is a guerlain fanboy's wet dream

    Good cologne. *****
    -

  17. #17

    Default Re: The Guide and Guerlain

    As for Eau de Guerlain - I read somewhere that LT wore it for the 10 years, so it`s just his favourite cologne.
    I found vintage Eau de Guerlain cologne (not bee-bottle EDT!) to be one of the best perfume-depression remedy - I wear it when I feel like No Perfume For Myself Please!
    For me natural colognes works as remedies: like Eau de Rochas, L`Eau Neuve de Lubin, etc... Not Cologne de Mugler though.
    Vetiver The Great!!!

  18. #18

    Default Re: The Guide and Guerlain

    " But then we got Héritage - a true masterpiece. And - that is if you ask me - Chamade pour Homme and Spiritueuse Double Vanille."

    Mr. Guerlain, you are quite correct: Heritage is a masterpiece. I got a shaker bottle from Harrods when it was first released. It's a true classic masculine and came in a beautiful bottle. After that the fragrances seemed to diminish in quality of composition and in the presentation. The magnificence of the bottles for Derby, Parure, Nahema seem light years from the Coriolan, Champs Elysees and Mahora. They haven't seen fit to put out a shaker bottle for either Coriolan or I'Instant Pour Homme. Fortunately, the new spray bottles for Vetiver and l'Instant are beauties - although I am not particularly enamoured with the the fragrance of the latter (too much cocoa for my taste.)

  19. #19

    Default Re: The Guide and Guerlain

    I absolutely agree - both about the newer Guerlain bottles not being so fantastic as before, and about the cocoa being too much in l'Instant (according to Sylvaine Delacourte, its inspiration is a very intense chocolate pastilla mixed with a Mediterranean drink - somehow the image of this mix just makes me kind of sick?).

    It seems like the older Guerlain bottles were really art products - but actually the same architect/designer (Robert Granai) who made all bottles from 1974 and forth, also made Coriolan. But yes, what I liked about the older bottles was that they were not very 'smart' or 'slick' or 'minimalistic' at all - they were rather strange, not always really pretty design objects. Still, the limited leather edition of Coriolan has this 'unnecessary detail'-quality...

    Quote Originally Posted by opalsdad View Post
    " But then we got Héritage - a true masterpiece. And - that is if you ask me - Chamade pour Homme and Spiritueuse Double Vanille."

    Mr. Guerlain, you are quite correct: Heritage is a masterpiece. I got a shaker bottle from Harrods when it was first released. It's a true classic masculine and came in a beautiful bottle. After that the fragrances seemed to diminish in quality of composition and in the presentation. The magnificence of the bottles for Derby, Parure, Nahema seem light years from the Coriolan, Champs Elysees and Mahora. They haven't seen fit to put out a shaker bottle for either Coriolan or I'Instant Pour Homme. Fortunately, the new spray bottles for Vetiver and l'Instant are beauties - although I am not particularly enamoured with the the fragrance of the latter (too much cocoa for my taste.)
    --------------------------------------
    Haha OMG, don't know if this is bad or good. Perhaps I'm known to be the BN'er that is focused on only one house which I know is blasphemy in the scented world...

    Quote Originally Posted by T. Rex, Esq. View Post
    Hahahahaha!!

    I had this same experience. M. Guerlain, you are tres celebre!
    --------------------------------------
    I think you are so right about this - if you read a guidebook in search of agreement, I think you'll end up throwing it out of the window in anger. For me, as a pure amateur, it's simply invigorating to get access to a specialist's thoughts, experience and knowledge, just as I get here on BN.

    Quote Originally Posted by pluran View Post
    I don't read his reviews to find out whether or not I agree with them all
    Last edited by Mr. G; 30th April 2008 at 05:41 AM. Reason: Automerged Doublepost

  20. #20

    narcus's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Guide and Guerlain

    I discovered the Imperiale relatively late in my life, and prefer it only because it comes in huge bottles. I don't use any of the classical eaux de Cologne, later also called eaux fraiches, to smell good (they only consist of the top notes, there is neither middle nor base!), I use them as a body and face splash de luxe, great for the moment, ideal when you travel, good to have in the car, and helpful when someone feels a little ill. That's what these waters were actually made for, and that's where a small bottle of Eau de Guerlain wonderful as it is, doesn't make sense other than in mom's handbags. Besides EdGuerlain, L'Eau de Lanvin' was the best to my nose! Just too expensive for the few minutes of absolute joy. Like other good Lanvins it's disappeared more than ten years ago.
    'Il mondo dei profumi è un universo senza limiti: una fraganza puo rievocare sensazioni, luoghi, persone o ancora condurre in uno spazio di nuove dimensioni emozionali' L. V.

  21. #21

    Default Re: The Guide and Guerlain

    Got The Guide this morning. Having problems focusing on my work as the book's in my bag below the desk in my office... Peeking inside on and off.

    First reaction: gotta go home and use Après L'Ondée some more. Marked as 'heavenly' and 'one of the twenty greatest perfumes of all time', and also in the top ten list of feminine fragrances for men - why don't I use this one more often? Because, perhaps, that I instinctly know that this is a precious one - extract is now discontinued and vintage EdT is difficult to find...

    Second reaction: Derby is rated as 'one of the ten best masculines of all time' - wow, gotta use my remains more sparingly...

    Third reaction: I knew that Luca Turin adores Mitsouko, but not actually that it's in his top ten of feminine fragrances for men. I MUST soon begin to get over its woman's-flesh feel on me...

    Forth reaction: 'Awful' is too harsh for Vetiver Extrême. But yes, it feels too 'sporty'. I hate sporty scents actually. Hope I can forget this word again.

    Too bad I'm going out tonight... would love to read all evening.

    Quote Originally Posted by Bromo33333 View Post
    I would third my great curiosity as to Mr. Guerlain's opinion of the reviews!

    I find my sampling and exploraiton to be greatly enhanced by the guide - esp. for Guerlain and Chanel (about as much as when I joined BN!)

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