Category Archives: Frapin

1697 – Frapin

frapin 1697
1697 opens dense and hugely overwhelming. A MASSIVE combination of thick, syrupy booze (rum), matured with a bucket load of fragrant, culinary spices – cinnamon, clove, pink pepper. There’s a thick vanilla underneath, a burnt tonka bean vibe – it’s like a booze drenched Arabie, or Aziyade. I first smelt this briefly in Paris, and was totally knocked sick from it, I found it hideous… as vanilla heavy (particularly boozy) fragrances often go on my skin… but revisiting it now… I’m bowled over by it.

This thick, complicated syrup is counterbalanced by some herbal notes… in honesty, I have no idea what they could be… bay leaf? Lavender even? There’s something fragrant in there that makes this not an all out boozy-gourmand-spicy-resinous thing. I’d say “thankfully”, but I’m not really, 1697 settles pretty quickly. I love that opening, and wish the huge overload of spices and rum would continue for hours and hours, similar to how to complicated opening of Eau D’Epices continues to be mindblowing-ly complex, well into the heart. However, 1697 relaxes into a much softer scent, that I guess is easier to tolerate.

What happens as it quietens down, and melts into your skin, is the tonka/vanilla pushes forward, the faintest hint of rose and maybe even almond? – give this a creamy, plush skin smell – kept interesting by that remaining (and relatively hefty dose of) spiced rum. The whole feel of it is both comforting, luxurious and extremely elegant… Cuir Ottoman springs to mind out of my collection as something that makes me feel the same. I’ve always loved this kind of spice basket and dried fruit scent (the fruit here being dates, raisins – but with a more golden feel? Papaya? Mango? – well, the thought is there). I’ve never sprung for a bottle of something like this though, I guess I’ve been exploring the ground. But THIS… this might just be the one.

The drydown actually reminds me of Ambre Narguille (which I thought was pretty shit) – but done better of course. A refined, slightly plastic-y, slightly play-doh-y vanilla scent (you all know vanilla drydowns are generally not my thing)… and also to a lesser extent the tobacco/vanilla finale of Luctor et Emergo. Whilst it’s subtlety and restraint in the late drydown as it all falls into place is a slight let down from the truly glorious opening, I can still easily see myself with a bottle of this in the veryyyyyy near future.
Another quick comparison I’d also like to make, is how the rose in here smells very similar to Mohur by Neela Vermeire, a fragrance that totally didn’t work for me at all… here however? It all slips into perfect place.

A wonderful Duchaufour creation (and just as I thought I was sick to death of him!).

Frapin 1697 – 100ml EDP £135 –

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Frapin – L’Humaniste, Passion Boisee

I received a couple of samples with a recent swap on Basenotes (I received my Gris Clair… today :D). There were two Frapin ones which I’ll try my best to review. I have no knowledge of Frapin at all, or these scents, so hopefully this house will be a nice new discovery.

L’Humaniste opens very “cologne-y”. There’s some bright, tart citrus fruit of lemon and orange and an overlay of aquatic notes. There is something really nice underneath all of it though which I can’t quite pick up on yet but hopefully that will come forward later.

The citrus is starting to burn off slowly, leaving that slightly soapy stain that citrus often does. I just did a quick Google search to figure out what the herbal concoction was that’s going on… Gin! That’s it, a lovely kind of gin and tonic note that almost smells like the fizzy drink itself. There’s a slightly cinnamon-nutmeg spice grounding everything, and a slight floral which I can’t really identify.

As the citrus leaves more and the gin and herbal notes come up front, a green, slightly de-sweetnened cardamom shows up and stays visible. I’ve only really smelt cardamom in a more warm, oriental composition: here it is fresh, fragrant and subtle. There’s a little crack of pepper as well which keeps adding a little kick to the top.

What remains after a little while is a flat gin-like herbal note, some fragrant greenery (cardamom), a dash of bitter oakmoss and a creamy base.
It’s all round a pleasant and safe masculine, but nothing I’m excited by.

Wow, this is more like it. Passion Boisee opens with a real boozy rum accord and some bright citrus – more orange than lemon. It feels thick and syrupy rather than light and refreshing like L’Humaniste. I can instantly smell some patchouli in the base, and up in the middle, a spicy nutmeg accord.

Unfortunately only a minute or so on and the lovely opening has become quite a plain scent. I smell patchouli (the tart orange has burnt off), there’s still a slightly boozy rum note, I actually smell rose as well but it must be a phantom note because there’s no rose listed. There’s some oakmoss there, pairing with the patchouli for a bitter green undertone. Some wood and leather also support it, and whilst the whole fragrance sounds dark and looming, it actually sits quite light: light but not transparent.

A peppery spice stands strong up front, and the green base notes, rich wood and leather dominate the remaining space of Passion Boisee. It starts with hope, and becomes quite plain from then on. So much so that there’s not much else to say about this.

I’m glad I got the opportunity to try these, but I won’t be hunting out the rest of their range to sample…

L’Humaniste Frapin 100ml – $155
Passion Boisee Frapin 100ml – $155

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