Astier de Villatte Splash Orange Amere & Commune de Paris 1871 ~ fragrance reviews

Astier de Villatte Splash Orange Amere & Commune de Paris 1871

Six years ago, I bought (shipped from France) bottles of Astier de Villatte’s Eau Chic, Eau Fugace and Eau de Cologne. Between the two of us in my house, we went through those bottles in record time (15 ounces of perfume!) and it was discouraging trying to track down Astier de Villatte perfumes in the US. Now, Aedes de Venustas (full disclosure: a long-time NST advertiser) just stocked them. (I actually let out a whoop when I heard the news.) Just like their great scented candle line,1 the Astier de Villatte colognes are well-made and interesting; this week I’m reviewing two newer offerings, Splash Orange Amère2 and Commune de Paris 1871.3

Splash Orange Amère begins with a strange mix of oily bitter orange and bergamot mixing with tangy-spicy (peppered) tarragon, a green and “edgy” scent. There’s a food-y vibe to Splash Orange Amère…

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Atelier Cologne Philtre Ceylan ~ fragance review

Govardhan. Dalliance on a Terrace, detail

Day after day, he worked to perfect the love potion to seduce this untouchable woman. He asked her to meet him early in the morning in the park where the cherry blossoms were in full bloom. The perfect moment to kiss her would be apparent. Later, he understood that she never drank the filter he prepared. Instead, it was destiny that brought them together.

The Atelier Cologne Philtre Ceylan copywriter apparently does not know what “untouchable” can mean in Ceylon (Sri Lanka). Filter? No, that would be — p-h-i-l-t-r-e. ARE there cherry trees in Sri Lanka? Why not a heavily scented flowering myristica fragrans tree (that yields nutmeg and mace)? Perhaps all was lost in translation? (But when a perfume costs over $300, it is nice to get some free humor.)

Philtre Ceylan (roughly translated as Ceylon love potion) is part of the Collection Orient. Philtre Ceylan’s mix of notes1 promised an exciting perfume experience…

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Annick Goutal Sables ~ fragrance review

Annick Goutal Sables

Annick Goutal created Sables1 over 30 years ago, and I’m happy to be the one reviewing it here (at long last). Goutal used the shrublands of Corsica, one of her favorite vacation spots, as inspiration for Sables, whose main ingredient, immortelle (Helichrysum italicum), grows naturally there and is also planted on farms for use by companies such as L’Occitane. Sables was a gift for Goutal’s beloved husband, the cellist Alain Meunier; they had met and fallen in love as young music students, then drifted apart for decades before meeting again and marrying. (Grand Amour is another Goutal creation that pays homage to their life together.) Sables represents a perfumer’s love for a place and a man…très romantique.

Sables was one of the first niche fragrances I bought (and I’ve owned many bottles over the years). I’ve not smelled Sables in a long time (from a new bottle, that is) and was almost afraid to sniff it after smelling the recently re-released, tweaked (and scoured) Annick Goutal Eau de Monsieur….

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Scented Father’s Day Gifts ~ 2016

pink tie

It’s Father’s Day ALREADY? This year I’ve assembled twelve gift choices (13 counting the non-scented tie above) that can be mixed and matched: a box of soap and a shower gel, or some grooming products and a bottle of booze (there’s always food and drink on my list…they’re “fragranced,” correct?) So, buy a nice box or bag and fill it up! (If the box is a lacquered Chinese antique or the bag is a leather tote — all the better.)…

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Fath’s Essentials by Jacques Fath ~ four fragrance reviews

Jacques Fath Green Water and Vers Le Sud

Jacques Fath just launched Fath’s Essentials, a collection of four fragrances developed by perfumer Cécile Zarokian, and representing “a sensory voyage through new olfactory territories and rare emotions.” New anything is a hard assignment, especially in perfume, and what’s a rare emotion? One that’s bloody on the inside (fury? sorrow?), or an emotion experienced once in a blue moon, if we’re lucky —something like elation? And how does “new” and “rare” relate to essentials — things like socks, eggs, toothpaste? Let’s see!

Green Water (reissue): neroli, bergamot, lemon, mandarin, orange, basil, tarragon, vetiver, clove, mint, cumin, oak moss, musks, ambergris. (Wears like an Eau de Cologne.)

Green Water goes on with delicious-smelling (and vibrant) neroli front and center; it’s quickly joined by the scent of fresh/oily citrus peels. Then, Green Water focuses on orange blossom (tinged with almost-not-there cumin for a hint of dirtiness). Today’s Green Water smells good, if not as complex as versions past

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