Creative Universe is the brainchild of Beth Terry, who started out as a creative director in the fashion industry before turning her sights to perfume:
When she decided to create her own fragrance, she immediately knew what it should smell like. "I wanted tea in a glass," she said. "That was a childhood memory because my grandfather used to drink tea in a glass. It always looked so appealing to me." (via Women's Wear Daily, 6/9/2000)
The result was Té, which was launched in 1996 and features notes of bergamot, green tea, celery, grapefruit, ylang ylang and clove.
Of all the green tea fragrances I have tried, Té comes closest to replicating the smell of the real thing. It starts with sweet citrus; the citrus and the sweetness evaporate as it settles into a relatively dry green tea accord. The celery strikes an odd note in the early stages, but as the fragrance dries down, it lends a vegetal touch which realistically mimics the aroma of tea leaves. There is the vaguest hint of spice, an even vaguer hint of florals, and the slightest touch of creaminess.
Like the Bvlgari Green Tea, it is a casual scent, but I would call it smooth rather than crisp or bright, and relaxing rather than sexy. It is an Eau de Toilette, and it wears like one: you'll need to refresh every so often. The price is quite reasonable at around $65 for 130 ml. I have never bought a bottle simply because I can't imagine using 130 ml of anything, and I do wish they would come out with a smaller size.
For buying information, see the listing for Creative Universe under Perfume Houses.
An aside for tea fanatics: I would love to know what kind of tea Beth Terry's grandfather was drinking. Té reminds me of one of my very favorite oolongs: Huan Jin Gui Superior from Wayne Tea Salon. It is a very lightly oxidized tea, close to a green tea in taste, with floral undertones. The name translates to "Golden Osmanthus", and it smells more like Osmanthus than many teas which have actually been processed with the flowers. It is expensive but worth it, and the tea leaves can be re-used at least once. Someone should use headspace technology to capture the smell of a freshly opened bag.