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  1. #1

    Default Sycamore - where to find it?

    I have recently been looking up my friends favourite perfumes and their ingredients. This exploration is very interesting as a learning curve. One of them recently mentioned a Hermes perfume with Sycamore as an ingredient. I have looked in the single notes and on the internet. The only reference I can find is to the bark for tea.

    Has anyone got or used this and can describe the smell for me without me sniffing a tree?

  2. #2

    Default Re: Sycamore - where to find it?

    I wonder if they meant Chanel Sycomore?

    Nathan Branch says Sycomore is fig, maple or plane. Seems they all get called sycamore because they have similar leaf shapes.
    Out here we are running for the wide open spaces, the road-smell after the rain.

  3. #3

    Default Re: Sycamore - where to find it?

    Actually the perfume i was referring to was Un Jardin sur le Nil by Hermes which has top: Green mango, Grapefruit, Mid: Calamus, Lotus, Base: Sycamore, Frankincense. However your link brings about an interesting nuance on the spelling: sycamore and sycomore. I looked them up to see why.

    SYCOMORE
    Etymology - c. 1350, from Old French sicamor, from Latin sycomorus, from Ancient Greek συκόμορος (sukomoros, “fig-mulberry”), from σῦκον (sukon, “fig”) + μόρον (moron, “mulberry”). Possibly influenced by Hebrew שִׁקמָה (shiqmah, “mulberry”).

    Noun - sycomore (plural: sycomores)
    a type of fig, Ficus sycomorus, native to the Middle East; the sycamore tree of the Bible.

    Usage notes - Sycomore is an obsolete spelling of sycamore that hearkens closer to the word's Greek roots. Some writers have used the more Hellenic sycomore when referring to the Biblical tree to distinguish it from other trees now called sycamore.

    Synonyms - fig-mulberry, sycamore fig, sycomore fig.

    SYCAMORE
    Etymology - c.1350, from Old French sicamor, from Latin sȳcomorus, from Ancient Greek συκόμορος (sūkomoros, “fig-mulberry”), from σῦκον (sukon, “fig”) + μόρον (moron, “mulberry”). Possibly influenced by Hebrew שִׁקמָה (shiqmah, “mulberry”).

    Noun - (US) Any of several North American plane trees, of the genus Platanus, especially Platanus occidentalis (American sycamore).

    (British) A large British and European species of maple, Acer pseudoplatanus, known in North America as the sycamore maple.
    A large tree bearing edible fruit, Ficus sycomorus, allied to the common fig and found in Egypt and Syria; also called the sycamore fig or the fig-mulberry; the Biblical sycomore.


    I have not smelt the Chanel one, but assume they chose to spell it with the o because it is a fig/mulberry note rather than the other maples. I therefore assume Hermes has chosen the other spelling to mean the woodier maples.

    Can anyone smell either, or both of these and enlighten us here?

  4. #4

    Default Re: Sycamore - where to find it?

    i can't but chandler burr wrote a book about the creation of this hermes perfume. he has also an online article in the new yorker on the same subject.

  5. #5

    Default Re: Sycamore - where to find it?

    I live by a large old sycamore. They're the ones with the helicopter seeds. I think it's flowering now - yellow green dangling clumps. I'm assuming any scent note is based on the flower - wouldn't it be sycamore wood or sycamore bark otherwise? Maybe not, but as they're out there I'll sniff them for you!

    Heh, I now have a sticky nose - the flowers are covered in a sticky syrup. Tasty, actually, a little maple-ish, unsuprisingly. The scent is light syrupy with a bitter green, almost acrid note under.
    Out here we are running for the wide open spaces, the road-smell after the rain.

  6. #6

    Default Re: Sycamore - where to find it?

    Of course, Maple syrup on pancakes...... I've just dug out and sniffed my bottle of Vertmont Maple syrup from Canada....honeyish, a sweet smell with a greeny, woody ping?

  7. #7

    Default Re: Sycamore - where to find it?

    I think that you can tell there's a relationship between them, even though they are different. Maple syrup is very concentrated, so a lot more sugary and intense. There's no woody note in the sycamore flowers, which is what I think is a defining note in the male syrup - logical, as the sap is tapped from the trunk. The caramelly note is in there, but everything is dialled back tenfold, with the pollen-ey bitter greeness prominent over it.
    Out here we are running for the wide open spaces, the road-smell after the rain.

  8. #8

    Default Re: Sycamore - where to find it?

    Ok this has now turned into a challenge.... to find out what the sycamore note is in the Hermes perfume.... (Ref:- for interest only, I have no commercial reason)

    I looked up on the perfumers apprentice search tool:-
    sycamore = X
    sycomore = X
    maple = 5 flavours
    mulberry = X (surprising!)
    fig = 1 fragrance oil (we all probably know this smell)
    Plane = X
    ficus sycomous = X
    Acer = success maybe? 3 perfumes
    1) - Heliotropin replacer, base note, no smell reference
    2) - Phenyl Ethyl Acetate replacer, heart/mid note, Balsamic, Floral, Honey, Has a decided honey, rosy characteristic.
    3) - Phenylacetic acid replacer, base note - V.P 4, Sweet honey animalic type odor

    Looked up these with the good scents company :-
    1) Heliotropin
    odor type : floral
    odor strength : medium
    odor description: at 100.00 %. heliotrope flower sweet powdery coconut vanilla
    Luebke, William tgsc, (1982)
    odor sample from : Berje Inc.
    odor description: Cherry, vanilla, sweet cherry pit notes and creamy with cinnamic nuances

    2) - Phenyl Ethyl Acetate
    odor type : floral
    odor strength : high , recommend smelling in a 10.00 % solution or less
    odor description: at 10.00 % in dipropylene glycol. sweet floral honey rose balsam cocoa
    Luebke, William tgsc, (1995)
    odor sample from : Ungerer & Company, Inc.
    odor description: at 1.00 %. Floral honey, rosy with balsamic dark chocolate and cocoa notes with anisic black licorice nuances

    3) - Phenylacetic acid
    odor type : honey
    odor strength : high , recommend smelling in a 10.00 % solution or less
    odor description: at 10.00 % in dipropylene glycol. sweet honey floral honeysuckle sour waxy civet
    Luebke, William tgsc, (1987)
    odor sample from : Berje Inc.
    odor description: Sweet, floral, honey, rose, chocolate, tobacco and powdery with animal nuances

    (Aside: - A big thank you to the good scents company here. They actually deserve an award for their brilliant and informative web site. It must have taken years to assemble.)

    Has anyone got this Hermes niff and will smell it for us bearing these in mind?
    I can see a need to find a posh enough department store and smell it myself......

  9. #9

    Default Re: Sycamore - where to find it?

    Syca/omore's in Sur le Nil?! Seriously? I've worn this for years and never caught that note...!

    Wow. Love Nil, dislike Chanel's Sycomore. (BTW, for the maple syrup note, can't beat Annick Goutal's Sables.)

    As soon as I decide to scrub off the sample I now have on (Fire Island...), I'll trot out my Nil and give it an inspection. Thanks for the challenge!
    I am operating within established parameters. How are you?

  10. #10

    Default Re: Sycamore - where to find it?

    I'm only going on the basenotes fragrance note triangle..... It may be an illusion judging by the account of how Ellena works in that long paper article within gidos post. What a good challenge. Anyone know the master himself?

  11. #11

    Default Re: Sycamore - where to find it?

    MUMSY!
    I just looked at a carded sample I got yesterday (thrown-in-complimentary-with-order, I was disappointed 'cause it was a perfume I already had) and you're RIGHT. It actually lists sycamore wood.

    "A perfume of life and light, sparkling and generous, where the scents of green mango, lotus flowers and aromatic rushes mingle with incense and sycamore wood. For men and women alike."

    My word. Learn something new every day. About stuff you thought you knew. (lol)

    And, if you have something to swap, you're welcome to my carded sample.
    I am operating within established parameters. How are you?

  12. #12

    Default Re: Sycamore - where to find it?

    I recently smelled both of these fragrances (un jardin sur nil and chanel's sycomore) and I believe that a. neither contain any actual sycomore/sycamore and b. while un jardin sur nil refers to fig, sycomore refers to either the american or european sycomore tree rather than a fig tree. Un jardin sur nil has little to no natural ingredients and the combination of blond wood molecules and fig accord may have been poetically dubbed "sycamore." For the Chanel fragrance, it is hefty vetiver and wood molecules, dry, green, and likely an impressionistic accord much like fougere has no fern in it, but refers to what the accord evokes. I hope this helps and enjoy these two great albeit disparate fragrances.

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