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  1. #1

    Default Sample of the Day - April 2013

    Thé (1997 EDP) Comptoir Sud Pacifique

    I saw ‘The’ on the sample vial and some initials and just dived in.

    First impression was a bit like a tart apple tea with a hint of more traditional 'green' accord backing it up - like some aromatic men’s stuff from the 90's. Then, five minutes in and it seemed pretty much like the Thé one I used to enjoy in the orange can. Then, “hang on - it IS the Thé one I used to enjoy in the orange can!” Checked the initials and sure enough - CSP = Comptoir Sud Pacifique. Great!

    I wore this 1997/98 when CSP had a booth at the new HK Airport for a year or so. It's difficult trying to be objective about it because I associate it with frequent trips to Singapore around that time and the energy of the place and the people I was working with - it was absolutely a perfect match for the damp, humid afternoons there and getting out in the evenings.

    I suppose Thé may have taken some inspiration from Ellena's ground-breaking work with Bulgari, but it has a great ‘open’ quality to it - the fragrance seems a little less 'pinched' and ‘perfumed’ than Thé Vert et al and some of the others that followed. This one is expansive and a bit 'sloppy' - it's in such a good mood that maybe someone slipped a bit of vermouth in there as well. I do remember over applying this one very humid day after a flight and the friend who met me at the hotel asked if I was wearing Opium. Ooops. It says EDP on the can and now, coming back to it after more than a decade, I can see how the wonderful aura it projects might be too much of a good thing if you’re feeling trigger happy.

    I'm not sure how old my sample is but I dug out the original and have worn it over the last couple of days and it's a great relaxed, mildly Earl Gray-ish, cooling ‘boozy’ tea without a mean spirited bone in its body - summer here we come

    Last edited by mr. reasonable; 3rd April 2013 at 11:08 AM.

  2. #2
    teardrop's Avatar
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    Default Re: Sample of the Day - April 2013

    Thanks for starting the new thread mr. reasonable, l'm really enjoying your writing!

    I'll be joining you again at some point this month, once l've revisited a few more fragrances from the "back of the wardrobe".
    "What is this secret connection between the soul, and sea, clouds and perfumes? The soul itself appears to be sea, cloud and perfume..." - from Zorba the Greek by Nikos Kazantzakis.

  3. #3

    Default Re: Sample of the Day - April 2013

    Sounds good. Enjoy.

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Sample of the Day - April 2013

    Lovely review mr. reasonable!
    We're all in the same game; just different levels. Dealing with the same hell; just different devils.

    Wanted



  5. #5

    Default Re: Sample of the Day - April 2013

    CHYPRE PALATIN - Parfums MDCI (Bertrand Duchaufor)

    “A Moving Target’

    It was a thread here that first really alerted to me to Chypre Palatin. Comments from a couple of members prompted one of those involuntary (and ultimately pointless) 'must try this' comments. Jaded cynic that I am, you can imagine my shock and surprise when not one, but two people sent me samples to try! I sincerely thank you both

    Well, what's left to be said about this one? After my own week or so with it I have delved into the blogs and it has been pretty well covered – something of an industry darling, from the look of it. I admit I have been openly dismissive of the ‘cult of Duchaufor’ and his deluge of works over the last few years - 'resident perfumer' at about five houses at once and all the rest of it, but with Seville a l'Aube & Chypre Palatin it feels like a shift has occurred. It's sort of odd, as well, that it is in subverting or riffing on more classical accords that he has, IMHO, created two modern hits - a beautiful blowsy orange blossom and a chypriental with a twist. Neither of these is a ‘new smell’, but both are beautiful.

    DAY ONE. First Impressions.

    What an absolutely beautiful crisp green boozy opening - the promise of a stroll into the forest. Then, within minutes of what feels like a subdued but earnest lavender introduction to a fougere coming at me, suddenly there's a 'manly' halo of aldehydes and something more floral. I am not overly familiar with classic 'femme' floral chypres so I can't put a name to what I am sensing here but it resonates in a sort of 50's or 60's way like some of the old Guerlain EDCs I own, like Vol de Nuit or Parure . . . baffling.

    Of course Chypre Palatin is open to all takers (despite the male bust on the bottle) so it shouldn't surprise me that there is an aldyhedic floral luminosity - it just seems like a neat trick that it should emerge from a fairly foresty green / herbal lavender overture.

    And then, while still reeling from that neat one / two trick up front, there it is - the 'oriental' that is mentioned in this 'green oriental chypre'. That same glow that came from Lalfeorosa and Hasu No Hana that recalled, at a distance, Habanita. It's that same subtle benzoin-ish powdered sweetness that you sometimes unexpectedly get from a really good soap in an upscale hotel bathroom - the sort that makes you look for what brand it might be so you can track it down at some point – which sort of circles back to the suggestion of a fougere with a hint of ‘barbershop’, but nothing so literal as that. Interestingly, Denyse mentions in her excellent book about Seville a l'Aube that she brought Habanita in to sniff at one point . . . maybe it had a subliminal influence, we can but speculate.

    This is quite a ride - now there is a underscore that's not leather, but quite dark, maybe a subdued hint of pepper on something animalic? We are touching on Derby territory, or Chamade Pour Homme - there's a sense of connection to this more resolute leather chypre style of composition, but the floral aldehydes mood hasn't entirely abandoned us either - the two tonalities fluctuate like a deft use of strings vs. woodwinds shifting in and out of focus.

    Four hours in and if I came across this on someone at this stage of the proceedings I would clock 'oriental' I think, but the green is still there and that mildly dusty, musty vintage Guerlain EDC thing is lingering so 'green oriental chypre' it is then.

    Wow - Chypre Palatin - quite an entrance.

    THE NEXT FEW DAYS.

    I dug out some Vintage Parure EDC and did a left / right. The floral chypre family resemblance is there in the earlier stages – not quite as open and airy as the Guerlain (how could it be with current restrictions) but still very impressive. I’m noticing the chypre thing more and less of the lavender ‘almost fougere’ touch up front.

    31 Rue de Cambon gets mentioned a lot in reviews of Chypre Palatin and I get that - there is a wonderful sigh of recognition at the unfolding of a bright classic chypre floral with both, but after that they tend to head in different directions - 31 goes sort of nowhere much, and CP takes you on a roller coaster ride culminating in a very friendly warm balsamic send off.

    These last four or five wearings of CP have all been different, and I'll try to make some sense of the impressions along the way. The opening is very arresting and the way the aldehydes are handled is masterful IMO. The best way I can describe it is that they provide a fine sheen in the same way that some old oil paintings seem to have a 'lacquer finish' on top. This effect brings a focus to what's 'underneath' without ever feeling like it stands between you and what you are looking at. This is in contrast to the classic Chanels, where the aldehydes almost signify a glass door marking out the threshold you have cross before being admitted to what's on offer on the other side.

    On my second or third shot I topped up the spritz on my wrist after an hour or so just for the hell of it and this produced an amazing effect that I have since to recreate - I may die trying, because it brought out an amazing heightened reality kind of effect that highlighted both the airy chypre-ness and the glowing lacquer of the oriental facets that were beginning to surface. It positively shone.

    Anyway - the transition into the quite tightly packed floral heart is smooth and refined, with no one dominant 'flowery' note, rather a compact floral accord that is supported by enough of a 'sober edge' provided by what I assume is the more animalic notes. I guess this is a fairly trad approach for masculines (counterbalancing the floral with something darker) that you see in fougeres going all the way back, but particularly 70's and early 80's where serious herbal stuff (nutmeg, cumin) and animalics (costus, castoreum) did the job as well.

    And then, taking it's own sweet time (it varies from day to day) the balsamic, oriental styled base envelops things while still allowing the lighter aromatic touches to sit on top for an inordinate period of time. You don't really feel like you've 'lost' anything, the progression is so damned languid it's almost a "f*** you" to anybody who might be watching, pen in hand, ready to mark down the departure point of this or that note and do the usual 'longevity' rating thing. Good luck – this one is a moving target. Of course stuff has moved on but it's more a case of just quietly stepping aside to reveal more good stuff. My advice is to just enjoy the ride.

    Walking round today, my first opportunity to take the thing for a spin rather than just a wrist spritz after work, has been an ongoing series of well timed reminders that it's with me, each one accentuating different facets - aromatic dark green, floral glow, balsamic, light smoky and so on.

    The one recurring thought that came up during the course of the afternoon strolling around enjoying Chypre Palatin - this thing is immensely satisfying.

    P.S. When I was thinking about what to write about this one I flashed onto Vero Kern's Mito a couple of times. They are different scents BUT both have one thing in common, to me at least, in that the front and body of each is a masterful portrayal of nature in the grand tradition, but where once upon a time this experience might have been brought to it's logical 'forest floor' or 'rich garden soil' conclusion with oakmoss, some vetiver, patchouli and so on - both Chypre Palatin and Mito usher you indoors and sit you down comfortably with warmer, traditionally 'oriental' notes. The trick here is not to overdo it, of course, this is a fond farewell - not a grand entrance, and these guys have obviously invested a lot of time in ensuring the furnishings of the room are in the best taste.
    Last edited by mr. reasonable; 7th April 2013 at 04:55 AM.

  6. #6
    Guerlainista
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    Default Re: Sample of the Day - April 2013

    Great post, MR! I enjoyed reading it very much. Your comments are very much in line with my impressions, although you have explored it in much more depth than I (am capable of). Thanks!
    - - - - - - - - - - - - -

  7. #7

    Default Re: Sample of the Day - April 2013

    As Rubegon said, that was a great well thought out review and examination of the fragrance. To me Chypre Palatin was the best, hands down, release from 2012.(IMHO) Its a bright fragrance to me. As you rightfully noted, it takes its sweet time developing which is a nice change.

    MDCI, I believe, doesn't receive enough credit. For example, Rivages des Syrtes, to me is a much better example of pineapple and smoke than Aventus. The Creed is not poor, of course, but this is much better to me.

    Once again congratulations on a fine review.

    Rex
    My mom's great. I appreciate her sense of humor, patience and fondness for daytime drinking. :0)

  8. #8

    Default Re: Sample of the Day - April 2013

    Thanks, and thanks again to my two benefactors

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