Recently, I’ve come across many articles online and in magazines informing me that the scents men fancy most are (in no particular order): vanilla, cinnamon, licorice and pie (apple and pumpkin being favorites). Though I will happily eat a cinnamon roll, a slice of apple pie and/or a scoop (or two) of vanilla ice cream, I avoid sweet-foody room fragrance products that smell of cake icing, lemon sorbet, or crème brûlée. (The gist — dessert on a plate: GOOD; ‘dessert’ in a bottle or candle: BAD.) So when I received Antica Farmacista's Vaniglia, Mandarino e Bourbon room spray as a Christmas present, I was tempted to leave the box sealed and regift it or exchange it for another of the company's fragrances. Curiosity and post-holiday laziness kept me from doing either: I unwrapped, I sprayed.
Antica Farmacista (English translation: “Ancient” “Chemist/Pharmacist”) is a 25-year-old U.S.-based company; it claims to use the "finest essential oils and natural ingredients" in its products (home fragrance, perfume, body moisturizer, and bath/shower wash). Vaniglia, Mandarino e Bourbon's rich vanilla core is tempered by aromatic (and slightly acidic) mandarin juice and peel, and a sharp bourbon essence. No single note dominates the composition and the overall character of the scent is resinous, not foody. Vaniglia, Mandarino e Bourbon’s simplicity is refreshing, not dull or ordinary. Just a few sprays scent a large room and the lasting power is good. The beautiful jewel-like orange color makes me wary of using it as a linen spray but I have sprayed it in my car on especially dank and dark Northwest days to brighten my mood (and commute).
Vaniglia, Mandarino e Bourbon is available in room spray (100 ml for $28) or reed diffuser (150 ml for $56). For buying information, see the listing for Antica Farmacista under Perfume Houses.