Un Bois Vanille opens with a coconut and orchid combo, surprisingly light but sticky, like a sweet residue – which becomes quickly more apparant as the leading vanilla shows up. The vanilla is a good, traditional, straightforward one to me. Vanilla as many of you know, isn’t my favourite note, I like it, but not when it’s leading; the coconut doesn’t quite give me the interesting angle I need to be particularly interested in finding out what the rest of Un Bois Vanille is all about.
But anyway! It’s nice enough. The liquorice that everyone goes on about, is a mere touch on me – more subtle than the liquorice woods of Aomassai for example – it acts like a black, herbal sheet underneath the vanilla, rather than a partnering note.
The combination of sweet vanilla, tonka and benzoin – combine to make a vanilla that admittedly, has a few little textures going on – a lactonic note of condensed milk, a slightly bitter more woody aspect, and a traditional vanilla extract smell: culinary like a cupcake.
A sweet honeyed caramel, and a touch of smoke add a slightly more mature “burnt” quality to the heart, and the drydown of Un Bois Vanille brings a buttery-soft Lutens’ sandalwood and drier cedar. It’s as expected, no twists or turns – just a straightforward vanilla (at least after the quiet, harmless coconut and 2-minute mystery (imaginary?) orchid disappear). Oh man, brackets inside brackets, I must be getting bored of this one.
Okay, it’s not that bad! A straightforward vanilla soliflore that has good enough longevity and throw, to be considered “nice”.
Un Bois Vanille does little for me… in fact, I haven’t found a vanilla soliflore that suits me yet D: Disaster. What is everyone elses favourite vanilla?
Un Bois Vanille 50ml EDP Serge Lutens – 82 euros http://www.sergelutens.com