White from the Tauer Pentachord line left me speechless. I only tried it last week from a generous sample sent from a Basenoter (aren’t they lovely people?!), and it is the only one from the line I never gave a passing sniff.
No, White isn’t particularly complicated, but it strikes a chord with me that I absolutely adore.
The opening is an exquisite mix of iris and violet. The iris is powdery, slightly dated, paired in equal intensity with a delicate, sweet violet – yes it’s old-fashioned, and smells slightly like soiled parma violet candies, but it’s extremely familiar and comfortable on my skin.
The interesting aspect of White is when out of nowhere (within a couple of minutes), an unusual, extremely dry smoky wood that I initially mistook for cedar, seeps its way into the dusting of florals. The listed rosewood is similar in scent, with an equally dry, masculine edge – and is almost identical to the use of cedar in Profumi Del Forte’s Versilia Vintage Ambra Mediterranea. The Profumi Del Forte’s cedar wood was far too intense, and paired with the bitter herbal notes and creamy amber – turned into something of a monster on my skin and I hated it. However, Tauer’s use is a little more restrained, and whilst it introduces what I consider an extremely challenging element into a classical violet coloured floral composition, it gives White an instantly recognizable and complicated personality.
The rich vanilla which begins to envelop the florals with a sweet translucency, provides depth and support to the powder, pulling it into the base and never allowing the hot, dry rosewood to overpower their delicacy. A hint of Tauer’s signature ambergris (devoid of the amber and incense that make up the famous Tauer-ade), slips over the entire composition, adding a salty, musky element. The ambergris is potent, and helps to really throw this fragrance off the skin and around you – it’s enveloping, slightly overwhelming and addictive with wonderful lasting power and a linear drydown.
These 5 synthetic notes stand alone to make White, but in no way does the fragrance feel empty – it is minimalism done perfectly, and a hugely exciting change from Tauer’s genius Classics line, almost Comme Des Garcons-esque. In honesty, it’s salty ambergris, smoky wood and powdery sweet floral duo becomes such a distinctive and challenging quintuple that I currently don’t feel ready to wear it, but I hope to one day.
I really enjoy this, and it is one of the biggest surprises I have sniffed recently. Highly recommended! :)
White Pentachord Tauer 50ml – £115 Les Senteurs