My sample box was raided with a purpose this time – find all the gourmands lingering in there. I once won a seven sample set of super-gourmands on First in Fragrance, that have been ignored so far. But there is a time and place for everything it seems. Parfumerie Générale and its gorgeous inedible gourmands brought me on this particular path, so here is a slew of gustatory delights without the calories.
Montale Chocolate Greedy: starts out amazing, a creamy, dreamy ganache of purest chocolat au lait, the perfume equivalent of Lindt (the real Swiss one, not the American version, sorry). Sadly that stage is very fleeting and I am left with a very vague and sheer veil of powdery, slightly cocoa-y nothingness. But it is better to smell this from the bottle and move on with my day, since I am not sure I’d like to smell like something so realistically edible myself.
Montale Vanille Absolu: with notes including vanilla, cinnamon, clove and woods, Vanille Absolu is an elegant and unsweet, un-confectionary kind of vanilla scent that actually manages to smell fresh in the first stages and never goes near cloying territory. Very long lasting as we are used to from this house. A vanilla to recommend, although my favorite vanilla is Atelier Cologne Vanille Insensée that really nails the concept of “fresh vanilla”.
Montale White Musk: a nice scent through and through. It is not really a gourmand, but it fits in this post anyway, if only in mind maybe. Pure white musk with soft flowery wisps surrounding it, it is quite strong (I don’t think Montale is capable of producing something truly light and sheer) and seeming to gain strength over time instead of fading. I can see it getting on my nerves after a few hours, but it has its moments. If you are looking for a high quality white musk, this is a great option along with Serge Lutens Clair de Musc.
Parfums de Nicolai Vanille Intense: this starts out lovely, a spicy, orange vanilla mix that is interesting and unexpected (notes include orange, orange blossoms, immortelle, cinnamon, woods, patchouli, amber and musk). The drydown strangely, turns somewhat cardboard-y on me, and I usually avoid resembling inanimate objects in every way possible.
Annick Goutal Petite Chèrie: notes include pear, peach, rose musk, cut grass and vanilla. I am always baffled by Petite Chérie, generally Goutal perfumes are well-made and made with high quality ingredients, so I have no reason to assume it would be different here, but…since this is the favorite of the husband of a real life Perfumista friend, I’m trying to put it mildly – this smells like super-synthetic fake pear on me every time I try it, moving on. (Yes, that was mild.)
Comptoir Sud Pacifique Vanille Abricot: I did not expect much of this, I use Vanille Amande of the same line as a room spray in my kitchen after all, to great effect I might add. But Vanille Abricot is actually a pleasant and quite tenacious scent, that doesn’t fall apart on skin, like many such fragrances can. Also the name is very accurate, Vanilla and Apricot is exactly what you get, along with a bit of sugar.
Guerlain Gourmand Coquin: I like that upon first spritz, a chocolate indulgence if there ever was one (with notes of black pepper, rose, rum, chocolate), but it turns heavily treacly-fruity later on and is just too, too, too much. I lose appetite when smelling this (wait, that could actually be a good thing! *scrambles for the sample*)
Profumum Dulcis in Fundo: this sample is very old, therefore I am not sure whether it is still okay. I was expecting something über-sweet, but it is actually very subtle and pleasant. A vanilla-citrus combination, simple and subtle. (Take this with a grain of salt, I am really not sure my sample is what it says, since I have heard from many how overly sweet and heavy this is supposed to be, which my sample is simply not. )
Nez a Nez Bouche Baie: Fruit-compote disaster alert! (Includes notes of blackcurrant, blackberry, maracuja, orange blossom, jasmine, cherry, peach, coconut, vanilla, almond and honey) Did I say über-sweet before? Well, now, here we have the real deal. THAT is über-sweet! A hyperglycemic, synthetic, not even pleasant concoction to kill Diabetics in a spritz and bring people with regular metabolisms to their knees in under three minutes. Avoid!
Nez a Nez Marron Chic: Sadly this is not much better (notes: kumquat, orange blossom, iris, karo karoundé, violet, cocoa flower, benzoin, labdanum, vetiver and cocoa beans) or that much different from its brother above. Sugar with a slight chestnut touch, dominated by very fake smelling vanilla and cocoa. This line did not yet surprise me in a good way. See here my review of Figues et Garcons.
There are lovely gourmand perfumes out there, I adore most of what Pierre Guillaume does, like Musc Maori, Aomassai, Praliné de Santal, Tonkamande. From other lines I enjoy Jo Malone Sweet Milk, Odin 01, Hermessence Vetiver Tonka, Lutens Jeux de Peau and Un Bois Vanille, Guerlain Spiritueuse Double Vanille and Iris Ganache – all gorgeous gourmands.
What are your favorite “inedible, but I want to anyway” perfumes?