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  1. #1
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    Default Burr gives Cuir Ottoman by Parfum d'Empire four stars

    '...Not all men love the scent of leather. Perfumers create it using the smoky, hot-asphalt smell of birch tar, pyrazines (think pyromaniac in molecular form) and isoquinolines. This takes some getting used to. Putting on Andy Tauer’s Lonestar Memories — the smell of smoking tar and mesquite charcoal lingering on a cowboy’s saddle — is like bungee jumping into a volcano. Lancôme’s Cuir (”cuir” means leather in French) and Chanel’s Cuir de Russie are leather made more seductive, and Hermès’s breathtaking recent leather, Kelly Calèche, is one of the loveliest, most ingenious perfumes in decades: a supple, luxurious leather band, tanned and oiled, wrapped around a crystal vase holding subtle spring flowers.

    Corticchiato’s approach, Cuir Ottoman, is less brutal than Tauer’s, less luxurious than Chanel’s and more butch than Hermès’s. ...'


    Read the full review on the NYT The Moment blog here.

  2. #2

    Default Re: Burr gives Cuir Ottoman by Parfum d'Empire four stars

    I bought a bottle of this last month, and have been loving it. I have been on a total leather binge this winter. It started with an extended sampling of Etro's Gomma, which I got bored with pretty quickly. It's nice enough, and another very realistic smelling leather, but it lacks any dynamics, any flair. Then I got really into Montale's Oud Cuir d'Arabie. Wow. Amazing stuff. I know some folks react negatively to it, but after being pretty underwhelmed by the whole Montale thing overall, this one seemed more complex, interesting, and well thought out. I know it can be a challenging fragrance, and it is not for everyday wear, but I had a hard time leaving it at home. Then I found this one, Cuir Ottoman. It is a very complex, dynamic fragrance. There is an initial sharpness, reminiscent of Dzing, or Nostalgia, that petrol-like sting that I find strangely addictive. This fades fairly quickly, leaving a dirty, warm, musky, somewhat spicy leather base that lasts well into the day. It has some funky anamalic elements that people may react to, but I find them to be understated enough that I have worn this to work almost daily for the last 2 weeks without ever feeling self conscious. If I have a complaint, it would be that it's longevity could be better. I think it projects pretty well if you're not looking to fill a room, but 6 hours in you may want to reapply.

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  3. #3

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    Default Re: Burr gives Cuir Ottoman by Parfum d'Empire four stars

    I love Cuir Ottoman, and one of these days it will find it's way onto my shelf... the only disagreement I have with Burr's statement is with regard to Kelly Caleche. I've gone through half a 15ml bottle testing it, wearing it, etc. and at best I get a hint of leather hiding under the floral and green notes. I like Kelly Caleche, but not for its leather. I have great hopes for the EdP and parfum, both finally available.

    Perfumers take many roads to create 'leather', of which there is obviously no essential oil. Obviously a lot of what style you like comes down to personal preference, and the leathers I like the most are the "smooth" luxurious ones (Lancome, Chanel, Parfums d'Empire). Parfumerie Generale's Cuir d'Iris is as strong as a truck and represents the extreme end of the this style of leather. Other styles are the fuel types (En Avion, Film Noir, Nostalgia), and then the abstract types (Kelly Caleche).

  4. #4

    Default Re: Burr gives Cuir Ottoman by Parfum d'Empire four stars

    That's 4 stars too many. Cuir Ottoman is absolutely horrid stuff.
    Seek not the favor of the multitude; it is seldom got by honest and lawful means. But seek the testimony of few; and number not voices, but weigh them. - Immanuel Kant

  5. #5

    Default Re: Burr gives Cuir Ottoman by Parfum d'Empire four stars

    I think it's beautiful, and pretty brutal... in the nicest way.

    Not a leather fragrance for the faint of heart but a complex, deep, and true leather scent.

    Very masculine to♂

  6. #6
    mtgprox05's Avatar
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    Default Re: Burr gives Cuir Ottoman by Parfum d'Empire four stars

    Quote Originally Posted by surreality View Post
    That's 4 stars too many. Cuir Ottoman is absolutely horrid stuff.
    Really? In my brief experience with leather scents, I have found CO to be the easiest leather to love. It has non of the rougher edges that a lot of other leathers have and it's just subtely sweet and smooth. I really like, someday I'd love to own a bottle.

  7. #7

    Default Re: Burr gives Cuir Ottoman by Parfum d'Empire four stars

    Quote Originally Posted by surreality View Post
    That's 4 stars too many. Cuir Ottoman is absolutely horrid stuff.
    A bit dramatic. I am not a fan anymore of CO, but absolutely horrid? Come on now.
    I found it to be a smooth suede-like scent that sweetens as it dries down. Boring maybe but far from absolutely horrid.
    Last edited by Jock_With_Scents; 2nd April 2009 at 06:37 PM.

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Burr gives Cuir Ottoman by Parfum d'Empire four stars

    I didn't like it when I tried it. Which is fine - there's a lot of other leathers that I love.

  9. #9

    Default Re: Burr gives Cuir Ottoman by Parfum d'Empire four stars

    Quote Originally Posted by Jock_With_Scents View Post
    A bit dramatic. I am not a fan anymore of CO, but absolutely horrid? Come on now.
    I found it to be a smooth suede-like scent that sweetens as it dries down. Boring maybe but far from absolutely horrid.

    Yep, absolutely horrid, and that is being charitable. There is just something about this that does not agree with me. I've worn it maybe 5 times in an attempt to come to terms with this fragrance and it still seems to me to be a cacophonous, synthetic, muddled poor excuse for a perfume.

    When it comes to leather scents, I think I'll stick with Cuir d'Iris and Aoud Cuir d'Arabie as my leathers of choice.
    Last edited by surreality; 2nd April 2009 at 07:38 PM.
    Seek not the favor of the multitude; it is seldom got by honest and lawful means. But seek the testimony of few; and number not voices, but weigh them. - Immanuel Kant

  10. #10

    Default Re: Burr gives Cuir Ottoman by Parfum d'Empire four stars

    Quote Originally Posted by surreality View Post
    Yep, absolutely horrid, and that is being charitable. There is just something about this that does not agree with me. I've worn it maybe 5 times in an attempt to come to terms with this fragrance and it still seems to me to be a cacophonous, synthetic, muddled poor excuse for a perfume.

    When it comes to leather scents, I think I'll stick with Cuir d'Iris and Aoud Cuir d'Arabie as my leathers of choice.
    Aoud Cuir d'Arabie? Now that is absolutely horrid stuff.

  11. #11

    Default Re: Burr gives Cuir Ottoman by Parfum d'Empire four stars

    Quote Originally Posted by Jock_With_Scents View Post
    Aoud Cuir d'Arabie? Now that is absolutely horrid stuff.
    Each to their own. If we all liked the same stuff the world would be a boring place.
    Seek not the favor of the multitude; it is seldom got by honest and lawful means. But seek the testimony of few; and number not voices, but weigh them. - Immanuel Kant

  12. #12

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    Default Re: Burr gives Cuir Ottoman by Parfum d'Empire four stars

    I find Cuir Ottoman to be unbelievably smooth - but as I mentioned in my post above, leather is an incredibly subjective note. Because it's created from an amalgamation of other notes, my theory is that if you are either anosmic to -or don't like - to one of more of the notes in the leather accord, the composition won't smell like leather, but rather a jumble. I cant's stand HdP 1740, probably because of the immortelle.

    Aoud Cuir d'Arabie has some serious shock value it's so strong, and it's certainly not going to appeal to everyone because of that rubbery 'band aid' note at first, but if you can hang on til the drydown it's leather heaven. Nothing beats Cuir d'Iris, imo.

    Speaking of leather, there is a new leather fragrance out that's really good - Sonoma Scent Studio Tabac Aurea, which is a mix of tobacco, leather, and labdanum. It's got a tobacco bite at first but dries down to a very smooth leather. Good stuff! (samples at sonomoascentstudio.com)

  13. #13

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    Default Re: Burr gives Cuir Ottoman by Parfum d'Empire four stars

    I really like Cuir Ottoman and will probably buy a bottle at some point. The only reason I haven't already is that I already own Dzing! and Royal English Leather and CO is very much in the same spirit as those two, although certainly it's less playful than Dzing!

  14. #14

    Default Re: Burr gives Cuir Ottoman by Parfum d'Empire four stars

    No surprise; it's wonderful.

  15. #15

    Default Re: Burr gives Cuir Ottoman by Parfum d'Empire four stars

    I agree with bbBD, J_W_S, and mtgprox5 and I too endorse Cuir Ottoman as a smooth application of leather. It is well made and masterfully balanced, as it evolves I get a sweet suede accord that is unique.

  16. #16

    Default Re: Burr gives Cuir Ottoman by Parfum d'Empire four stars

    CO is very nice, though I think it falls just shy of bottle worthy for me. When I first tried it, I thought it was too powdery, though I came to really appreciate it.

    My favorite leather is still Knize Ten (how can we go so long in a leather-related thread without mentioning it?). I'm also a big fan of Cuiron.

    A couple other leathers I like and hope to eventually get bottles of: Lonestar Memories and Bandit.

  17. #17

    Default Re: Burr gives Cuir Ottoman by Parfum d'Empire four stars

    Quote Originally Posted by PhinClio View Post
    I'm also a big fan of Cuiron.
    Cuiron is another "leather' fragrance that is just doesn't do anything for me. I think I dislike Cuiron more than I dislike Cuir Ottoman. In fact, Cuiron is so bad that stars should be deducted from other Helmut Lang fragrances just to make amends for releasing such a vile synthetic smelling concoction on the noses of the world.
    Last edited by surreality; 3rd April 2009 at 02:18 AM.
    Seek not the favor of the multitude; it is seldom got by honest and lawful means. But seek the testimony of few; and number not voices, but weigh them. - Immanuel Kant

  18. #18

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    Default Re: Burr gives Cuir Ottoman by Parfum d'Empire four stars

    Perhaps surreality has now filled the void left by everso's departure as the person with the most forceful opinions on leather fragrances? BN must have one, I suppose. What I need surreality to do is convince everyone with the vile Cuiron and atrocious Cuir Ottoman that they are in the minority (not the majority) for liking such fragrances, and that they should send all bottles of both fragrances to me so as to avoid smelling awful. I will then guard the bottles to ensure that no one be exposed to these two terrible fragrances that most leather fragrance fans are clearly out of their minds for enjoying.

  19. #19

    Default Re: Burr gives Cuir Ottoman by Parfum d'Empire four stars

    Not to veer too far OT, but I somehow missed everso's departure/banning. I always found him fairly amusing, in part because I thought he had interesting opinions that were worth listening to. Sorry he's gone. No wonder K10 wasn't mentioned in the first fifteen posts on this thread!

  20. #20
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    Default Re: Burr gives Cuir Ottoman by Parfum d'Empire four stars

    Quote Originally Posted by PhinClio View Post
    Not to veer too far OT, but I somehow missed everso's departure/banning. I always found him fairly amusing, in part because I thought he had interesting opinions that were worth listening to. Sorry he's gone. No wonder K10 wasn't mentioned in the first fifteen posts on this thread!
    It was amusing for awhile, but then I started noticing all the reviews that were piling up--"it is not K10, thumbs down". Got a little old.

  21. #21

    Default Re: Burr gives Cuir Ottoman by Parfum d'Empire four stars

    Quote Originally Posted by bbBD View Post
    Perhaps surreality has now filled the void left by everso's departure as the person with the most forceful opinions on leather fragrances? BN must have one, I suppose. What I need surreality to do is convince everyone with the vile Cuiron and atrocious Cuir Ottoman that they are in the minority (not the majority) for liking such fragrances, and that they should send all bottles of both fragrances to me so as to avoid smelling awful. I will then guard the bottles to ensure that no one be exposed to these two terrible fragrances that most leather fragrance fans are clearly out of their minds for enjoying.
    LMAO!

    You can send some of the stock to me as an off-site disaster recovery back-up.

  22. #22

    Default Re: Burr gives Cuir Ottoman by Parfum d'Empire four stars

    Quote Originally Posted by Asha View Post
    It was amusing for awhile, but then I started noticing all the reviews that were piling up--"it is not K10, thumbs down". Got a little old.
    Fair enough...but there are times that I wish I could be as thoroughly satisfied with a scent as everso was with K10 (which I love, fwiw, so perhaps that increased my sympathy for his shtick). And he did actually like some other scents. Matter of fact I think I blind bought Escada Homme in part because he raved about it. And I'm happy I did.

    All that being said, I've never been a fan of the that's-trash-how-can-you-like-it!?!?! routine that everso had begun to specialize in. I'm happy to write about my likes and dislikes (and to hear about those of others). But I never feel the need to belittle those who have different tastes from me.
    Last edited by PhinClio; 3rd April 2009 at 03:23 AM.

  23. #23
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    Default Re: Burr gives Cuir Ottoman by Parfum d'Empire four stars

    Quote Originally Posted by bbBD View Post
    I like Kelly Caleche, but not for its leather. I have great hopes for the EdP and parfum, both finally available.
    Have you tried the EDP yet? It is very nice. I am not much into leather perfumes, but I liked it more than the EDT.:wave:
    Evenstar

  24. #24
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    Default Re: Burr gives Cuir Ottoman by Parfum d'Empire four stars

    Quote Originally Posted by PhinClio View Post
    Fair enough...but there are times that I wish I could be as thoroughly satisfied with a scent as everso was with K10 (which I love, fwiw, so perhaps that increased my sympathy for his shtick). And he did actually like some other scents. Matter of fact I think I blind bought Escada Homme in part because he raved about it. And I'm happy I did.

    All that being said, I've never been a fan of the that's-trash-how-can-you-like-it!?!?! routine that everso had begun to specialize in. I'm happy to write about my likes and dislikes (and to hear about those of others). But I never feel the need to belittle those who have different tastes from me.
    Well, I do agree that it is admirable to take a stand, and that is the good side of this scenario. I sometimes worry that I might offend one of my online friends by giving one of their favorite fragrances a bad review...but then I think, if I don't say what I feel about it, I am just a mealy-mouthed sellout. However, I do feel that if a person doesn't like something, there are intelligent and thoughtful ways to say it. Most verbal trashing is the equivalent of physical fighting, IMO.

    Anyway, Cuir Ottoman--I tried it briefly once. On me it smelled really smoky, and I couldn't get past that. I'll dig out my sample again some day, but so many other things are taking my attention. I love the smoke and leather in Amber Russe, though!

  25. #25
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    Default Re: Burr gives Cuir Ottoman by Parfum d'Empire four stars

    I love Cuir Ottoman, but can never get around to get anything more than a tiny vial as I feel the desire to wear it so seldom.

    I actually have this problem with some other leather fragrances, actually ( including other favorites like Cuir D'Iris, 1740 and Dzing! ) I love them, but I know that a bottle would last me decades, as I'd wear them maybe five to ten times at most over the course of a year. Probably Aoud Cuir D'Arabie is the closest to pushing my "could wear this often button" because it's dry.

  26. #26

    Default Re: Burr gives Cuir Ottoman by Parfum d'Empire four stars

    Quote Originally Posted by bbBD View Post
    Perhaps surreality has now filled the void left by everso's departure as the person with the most forceful opinions on leather fragrances? BN must have one, I suppose. What I need surreality to do is convince everyone with the vile Cuiron and atrocious Cuir Ottoman that they are in the minority (not the majority) for liking such fragrances, and that they should send all bottles of both fragrances to me so as to avoid smelling awful. I will then guard the bottles to ensure that no one be exposed to these two terrible fragrances that most leather fragrance fans are clearly out of their minds for enjoying.
    I only have strong opinions on these two fragrances because to my nose they are so shockingly bad. I may be in the minority and hold an unpopular opinion in regard to these two fragrances but even if I were the only person on Earth who disliked Cuiron and Cuir Ottoman I wouldn't change my opinion.
    Seek not the favor of the multitude; it is seldom got by honest and lawful means. But seek the testimony of few; and number not voices, but weigh them. - Immanuel Kant

  27. #27

    Default Re: Burr gives Cuir Ottoman by Parfum d'Empire four stars

    Quote Originally Posted by Asha View Post
    if I don't say what I feel about it, I am just a mealy-mouthed sellout.
    If we start self-censoring because we think we may offend someone or are reticent to post an opinion about a fragrance because it goes against the tide of popular opinion here on basenotes then we are doing neither ourselves, nor the community at large, any favors.
    Seek not the favor of the multitude; it is seldom got by honest and lawful means. But seek the testimony of few; and number not voices, but weigh them. - Immanuel Kant

  28. #28

    Default Re: Burr gives Cuir Ottoman by Parfum d'Empire four stars

    I was hoping I liked Lonestar Memories as much as LDDM, so I could wear a less popular scent, but it just didn't happen. I can't justify getting a FB of Lonestar Memories before LDDM. I have been wanting to try Aoud Cuir d'Arabie for awhile and just recently have heard about Parfum d'Empire. I might as well see what Cuir Ottoman has to offer.

  29. #29

    Default Re: Burr gives Cuir Ottoman by Parfum d'Empire four stars

    Cuir Ottoman is smooth like suede as opposed to intense like Gomma or Knize Ten or Cuir de Lancome.
    A good friend likens it to smelling a new pair of Tod's shoes. I concur.

    Its a leather for the leather connoisseur.
    for swap/sale:



  30. #30
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    Default Re: Burr gives Cuir Ottoman by Parfum d'Empire four stars

    Cuir Ottoman is a wonderful scent IMO.

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