A new video here!
Please excuse the unflattering stalling towards the end of the video x
A new video here!
Please excuse the unflattering stalling towards the end of the video x
Myrrhe Ardente opens with a sweet vanillic almost root beer like boozy accord – the myrrh’s texture underneath already showing a smooth, rubbery vibe that I’m loving! There’s a strong hint of anise in the top – a candied, syrupy aniseed lacquered over benzoin and a trail of resinous smoke. It starts sweet, the vanillic resins along with a beautiful amber slowly getting drier as time goes on.
The anise begins to quieten, as a the smoke gets a little stronger (from either the myrrh – or listed guaiacwood - which I was recently informed has a “fatty, smoky smell”, and that totally fits here). This change brings with it a lovely, set honey note – smooth, sweet and not at all animalic or “soiled” smelling. I almost expect an almond note to roll up and turn this into a big, bomb of a gourmand, but the resins keep it from being edible.
Myrrhe Ardente’s subtlty becomes apparant pretty quickly into it’s development, settling into a light layer on the skin (still however, with a lovely throw and a long life) - but full of rich ingredients and a dense, rubbery texture. A warm, peppered spice buzzes underneath keeping Myrrhe Ardente from falling too flat and rounded – and I get an almost chocolate/coffee note underneath, slightly lactonic with a bitter/sweet gourmand quality.
A woodiness gets stronger, it smells as smooth as sandalwood but with a dry, smokiness like raw cedar – only quieter and with a more dense texture… maybe the guaiac wood again? The warm amber underneath is beautiful, not at all powdery – and more heavy on the vanilla and benzoin than the resinous labdanum – the resinous quality replaced by the incense.
I keep catching glimpses of the anise remains in the drydown, as the myrrh begins to make itself a little more known – adding a distinct but subtle bitterness. The smooth, rubbery texture is continued by a finale of beeswax – dragging that honey note throughout the fragrance, but the vanilla-heavy amber and sweet, smoky wood dominate Myrrhe Ardente’s drydown until the end. It is such a comfortable fragrance to wear and a new love for me in the Annick Goutal line – I’ll be picking up a bottle of this in time!
Myrrhe Ardente 50ml EDP Annick Goutal – 87 Euros http://www.annickgoutal.com
My bottle of Sables arrived the other day so I thought I’d write about it. I wouldn’t quite say Sables was a blind buy – but I had only gave it a passing sniff before, on paper, twice.
Sables comes out the bottle medicinal and boozy, before an instant uproar of hot, dry spice flies to the foreground, the curried scent of fenugreek blooming under the nose. Up close the immortelle is rich and syrupy, a hit of pepper gives it lift, some cinnamon adds heat, and I also get an unusual but prominent anise note which is an absolutely perfectly inclusion that I haven’t heard mentioned before…
If I spray it on lightly, the curried quality of immortelle comes out on top – spicy, with a savoury gourmand quality. If I spray it on heavy, I get a much more syrupy sweetness with the anise more prominent… I spray it on heavy! It’s gorgeously rich, the immortelle giving the anise a more dense, liquorice quality. The immortelle is the most prominent note from start to finish, and if you don’t like it’s aroma then it sounds more than obvious to say “stay away!” – it’s presented here in full flower, but in a perfect harmony between the sweet and savoury spices.
The notes of curry are uncomfortable if you’re not familiar with the note, but if you are – then Sables is actually tamer than expected. For a more full-blown curry fest, try Fareb by Huitieme Art… that’s gruesome. I do really enjoy the spice, it’s cosy, warm and just teeters on the edge of edible.
As it begins to settle it tames every so slightly; a golden amber joins in from the base, along with a dry sandalwood. At this point the syrupy quality dries out until the immortelle of Sables smells more like a scattering of heavily scented powder. It gives the fragrance a more spacial feel – losing it’s density and becoming more of a landscape than an up-close portrait. It’s aura and sillage is wonderfully ever-changing, flickering between a fragrant curry (but not so literally it could be mistaken for food residue), and sweetly spiced amber. Bone dry and dusty in the end, it’s power is still impressive – lasting hours and hours.
I find Sables easier to wear than I expected and am thrilled to have it in my collection for the coming cold seasons! Recommended
Annick Goutal Sables 100ml EDT – 85 Euros annickgoutal.com
Bitter grapefruit, fresh lemons and aldehydes open the fresh Eau d’Hadrien. The aldehydes add that usual sparkling quality – throwing the citrus off the skin in a bucket of freshness. Not too green, but full of rich citric juices, Eau d’Hadrien’s bitter edge and the sourness of the lemons are classically presented in a tradition eau de cologne style – only it packs a little more punch.
The fragrance is relatively linear, with a lovely cypress – ever so slightly medicinal, green and “sappy”. It pulls the astringent quality of the fleeting grapefruit into the heart so that the lemon doesn’t sit on its own.
A little soapy – a little bit like bathroom cleaner (due to obvious associations), but charming and simplistic none the less.
Some patchouli joins in during the late drydown – not so rich and earthy as I’d hoped but instead clean and scrubbed, paired with the citrus notes it reminds me of the patchouli used in CB’s Patchouli Empire – I didn’t like that…
Within half an hour all the citrus has vanished, what is left is an ever-so-slightly musky, soapy patchouli, with a delicate metallic edge. It’s a skin scent, and a slight off one at that.
What more is there to say – it’s a nice-ish example of a cologne.
A cool, herbal breeze wafts up from Eau Du Sud. The subtly camphorous vapour of fresh-cut mint leaves, gives way to a beautiful note of basil and citrus. Sour lemon rind, with hints of green, paired with the menthol and basil gives of a wonderfully traditional vibe and the green herbals add an edge that’s a little more interesting than Eau d’Hadrien.
All harsh edges smooth out very quickly, and Eau Du Sud becomes a little more “standard”. Still, even though the mint burns off relatively quickly, it’s cool effect is left on the skin – bringing to mind salty sea air.
The citrus also tames quickly as, what I think is, a smidge of oakmoss comes forward. The herbals also retreat relatively quickly – but thankfully pull the opening away from cleaning product territory and therefore it stays that way.
The drydown as with Eau d’Hadrien comes around quickly, with the citrus gradually vanishing along with the fresh herbal notes. A very quiet, sherbert-y floral becomes present, I mistook it for violet at first but it turns out jasmine is listed? I don’t quite get that but hey. I know this is not what you’re supposed to do, but on my second wearing of this, I rubbed the fragrance between my wrists hard about 20 minutes into the fragrance, and this sherberty-floral is far more present, it evaporates instantly but is the quick glimpse is the most interest part of Eau Du Sud – it’s a shame they didn’t amplify this hidden sour/fizzy/floral quality.
This EDT doesn’t last too long, but it is nice enough whilst it lasts – the most interesting of the two fragrances
Eau D’Hadrien 100ml EDT Annick Goutal – £72 House Of Fraser
Eau Du Sud 100ml EDT Annick Goutal – £72 House Of Fraser
Having recently received 25ml of Songes generously gifted from a Basenoter - I’ve been more keen to explore the Annick Goutal line. I’ve been surprised, I have really not paid this house enough attention!
One fragrance that caught my eye (pretty bottle) was this one. It was pretty much a love at first sniff – well, not quite love, but you know
I bought a bottle the next day (last week), so have been wearing this regularly and discovering numerous complicated goings-on in this gorgeous gardenia.
Un Matin D’Orage has a complicated opening that is presented with great simplicity – a bitter greenery in the leafy style of many of the Goutal openings, is flung off the skin with a bunch of sparkling (but not aldehydic) ozonic notes. Ozonic notes have a bizarre texture on the skin, they almost smell “fuzzy”, like the scent of radiation if that makes sense. There is also a dense aquatic accord, it may be calone with its dense, melon like scent – paired with the ozonic notes though it smells more ethereal than cologne-y.
However, the leading role in Un Matin D’Orage is the gardenia – which is apparent after seconds when the first few futuristic notes have settled. The gardenia initially opens voluptuous, almost indolic, with that slightly off “cheesy” smell that makes them so damn appealing! Gardenia is similar to a tuberose, only slightly greener, a little more translucent, less rubbery, with a lactonic savoury smell that many associate to blue cheese – but it’s not intense or off-putting at all.
Un Matin D’Orage is meant to smell like a gardenia bush after a storm, and it does. It’s a lovely olfactory image that is portrayed perfectly in this fragrance, and the clever use of aromachemicals whilst, yes, making it smell highly synthetic, are put to great effect in the opening. But here’s the wierd thing: of course there is no natural gardenia oil/absolute as the scent cannot be extracted, so where Annick Goutal’s Gardenia Passion uses tuberose to achieve the gardenia effect, here (along with the florals I’ll mention later) the perfumer has used an aroma-chemical with a prominent fig like aroma (my guess is Stemone). So the reason why that is weird is because, paired with the jasmine grandiflorum (the watery green kind I don’t normally enjoy), and the merest hint of tea-like champaca creates a pretty good, but unusual rendition of the gardenia flower.
Going off topic and back to the actual scent for a minute: along with the “gardenia accord”, a waxy, lemony magnolia creeps in, dragging the little bit of citrus in the opening into the heart of the fragrance. Now, I realise it all sounds like a huge flower bouquet – it is, but smelt through a dense aquatic/ozonic sheen, an almost greenhouse like aroma. The dewy freshness is very soft and sheer, Un Matin D’Orage is a light white floral from start to finish and it’s presence on the skin after the initial opening is transparent and ethereal.
Back to the gardenia accord (sorry, toing and froing here): If someone held this under my nose and said “Smell this fig perfume” I’d go “Mmmmmm yeh” and if they said “Smell this gardenia perfume” I’d also go “Mmmmmmm yes, lovely…”. This is why Un Matin D’Orage is strange, it has two completely different personalities – yet fig and gardenia smell nothing alike… well, now I’m not so sure. So whether you want to make this out to be a cheap trick at trying to pull off a gardenia, I’d understand, but it’s undeniably clever.
Un Matin D’Orage is relatively linear. The ozonic notes fizz off into the atmosphere pretty early on, with the original dash of calone clinging onto a few of them. The jasmine and hint of champaca, paired with a big blob of synthetic leafy fig, or what we call “the gardenia accord”, stays with you until the end. There is always that dense aquatic note representing rainwater (successfully) sitting in front of the entire composition – it creates a blur over every note so that it smells as though the florals are in the distance. Yes, it smells like a bomb of aroma-chemicals, but I think it’s fantastic. It is gardenia almost Comme Des Garcons style, and without a doubt one of the most interesting fragrances I have smelt in a long time!
Un Matin D’Orage 50ml EDT Annick Goutal – £60 houseoffraser.co.uk