Sweet Memories – Review: Aftelier Perfumes Fig

Heya Olfactoria’s Travelers,

Portia with you from Australian Perfume Junkies and Perfume Posse.

About 2 years ago I had a dinner party and afterwards we sniffed some frags. I had hand picked 6 and wanted everyone to try one at a time on skin, we all put the same frags on the same piece of arm real estate (hand backs, inside forearm, just above inside elbow) so we could all sense how differently they wore on each of us. It was interesting because at the time there was quite a bit of chatter online about the smell being exactly the same on everyone and that we were all fooling ourselves.

Fig EdP by Mandy Aftel for Aftelier Perfumes 2009

Fig Aftelier FragranticaPhoto Stolen Fragrantica

Fragrantica gives these featured accords:
Top: Pink grapefruit, fir
Heart: Pink pepper, jasmine sambac
Base: Civet, agarwood, castoreum, musk, fig

Imagine the spiciest fig cake filled with zest and covered in a thick layer of creamy citrus icing. Is your mouth watering? It should be. Fig opens as the gourmand to end all gourmands, thick, rich and delicious.

I am immediately transported to the days of my studenthood. One of the big things we poor starving wannabes did regularly was wander up Oxford St (still a bit of a fashion and food mecca of Sydney) on a Saturday morning to window shop and see what was happening on the streets (fashion wise that is). This would culminate in whoever had lasted till the afternoon cramming into some coffee shop and ordering cakes with assorted beverages.

My personal favourite was a Carrot Cake with cream and either a large Flat White Coffee or a Chocolate Milkshake. Here I am in my office 30+ years later and Fig by Mandy Aftel has wormholed me to that very first bite of cake each week, a luxury, an over the top extravagance that tasted so freaking good and filled the void created after a day of being ridiculously fabulous at 2000 watts non-stop. It was also a great bonding time because we got to have the deep & meaningful conversations that are impossible on the wander.

Fig Aftelier Oxford_Street Sydney WikiPediaPhoto Stolen Wikipedia

WHAT A GREAT MEMORY! I am smiling from ear to ear here, lost in a haze of happy remembrances.

As we leave the opening behind and head top the heart Fig dries a little, becomes more rugged and less bakery. A spicy, woodsy heart that is still lush and filled to the brim with beauty, but now we get a dustier, earthier scent with a nod to bark and humus. The sweet hasn’t completely gone, there is still a jammy-ness but now it is less in your nose and more background.

Fig is not about a fig on a tree or one you’ve bought down the shop, this fig is cooked and sweetened, the woods that surround it are fresh hewn to make a table to air the cakes and pastries. All the animalics merely creating a beautiful depth to allow the central, magical cake to be the star.

Fig Aftelier Fig LoggaWiggler PixabayPhoto Stolen Pixabay

I get extraordinary longevity from Fig, hours later there is still a lovely, yummy whisper of delicious.

Further reading: Smelly Thoughts and Purple Paper Planes
Aftelier Perfumes has $180/30ml + samples

I know you’ve tried at least one Mandy Aftel, which was it and what did you think?

Portia xx


About Olfactoria

I'm on a journey through the world of fragrance - come with me!
This entry was posted in Aftelier, By Portia, Fragrance Reviews, Fruity, Gourmand and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

27 Responses to Sweet Memories – Review: Aftelier Perfumes Fig

  1. poodle says:

    Well, you learn something new every day. I just had to google and find out what a flat white coffee was. It seems it did originate in Australia but it has migrated to other parts of the world so now if it becomes the next big thing here I’m all set. For all I know it might already be.
    I’ve never smelled this but it does sound rather good from your description. I like the smell of fig in perfume especially if it’s more about the fruit than the leaf.

    • hajusuuri says:

      Dear Poodle, Starbucks started to have this on the menu last year ;-). However way they make it, it feels more substantial than a latte; perhaps it’s the ratio of foam to milk? In any case, it is what I usually order when just a plain drip coffee won’t do!

      • poodle says:

        I’m too cheap to go to Starbucks. Lol. I’ll happily spend hundreds on a bottle of scent but cringe at the price of a cup of coffee. Priorities.

    • Hey Poodle! As Mum used to say,” A day you learned something is never a day wasted.” Glad to have been of service.
      I could imagine you liking fig very much. Which other figgy frags do you like?
      Portia xx

  2. Tara says:

    My mouth was watering Portia! Gourmands are usually too thick and sweet for me but the zesty aspect of this sounds good. Really enjoyed your student memories and would love to see a photo of you from that time.

    I’ve had no luck with naturals so far but hopefully I will find one that works for me at some point. I admire Mandy so much.

    • Ha! One day Tara when you come to Oz I will get out my old photobooks,. we will laugh. Probably laugh a lot. We were so lucky, it was a golden age in Sydney and we were lucky enough to know that we had it good.
      Not all of Mandy’s work is 100% natural is it? I thought she did some mixed media too. Well, goes to show how much I know. “pure and natural essences” is what the site says. this is so good it feels mixed media.
      Portia xx

  3. hajusuuri says:

    Wonderful review, Portia. You made me want to play hooky and turn back around to go home , search for my sample (I think I have one) and bask in this perfume!

  4. Olfactoria says:

    Lovely review, Portia, thank you!
    I’m with Tara – I’d love to see a picture of you of that time.

    My favorite Aftelier is Cepes&Tuberose, but not to wear but just to smell and dream. 🙂

    • Hey Birgit,
      You’ll need to co-ordinate your holiday to Sydney with Tara. We can all sit around the table and go through childhood photos.
      I have used a couple of the small parfums of Cepes & Tuberose. Gorgeous. Rich & earthy.
      Portia xx

    • aftelier says:

      Thank you Birgit, I’m honored to be here and love hearing that you smell my perfumes just to be transported!
      xo Mandy

  5. ringthing says:

    Thanks for the review, Portia, I love figs in real life and in perfumes. I’ve been wearing Un Jardin de Mediterranee lately as a good transition scent but it is more woodsy than figgy and a gourmand fig would be lovely to try. Of the few Aftels I’ve sampled my favorite is Honey Blossom which I have a teensy sample of; don’t wear it as much as I huff it in the winter to be transported to a clover field simmering with bees in high summer. Gorgeous.

  6. Sandra says:

    Lovely review Portia! I love figs and you have made me want to try this perfume. Unfortunately I have not been able to try any of Mandy Aftel’s perfumes. The samples I bought sat in my cupboard for a few months and were dried up by the time I remembered. such a shame! xo

  7. anon says:

    I have tried numerous Afteliers (including this one) and sadly none of them work with my skin chemistry…one smelled of molded flowers and was a real scrubber….I am wondering if it might be due to the fact that she only uses essential oils (no mixed media perfumes). In any event her products are quite pricey so although I wasted money on samples I didn’t fall in love with a very expensive perfume!

  8. Sun Mi says:

    Hi Portia! I’ve only sampled Palimpsest, but sadly it was way way too much for me. I really struggle with certain gourmands, so as much as I love fig, I’m not sure if this one is for me. Perhaps I’ll sniff it someday though. 🙂 Thanks for the review!

  9. Michael says:

    It sounds lovely. I’m a bit of a sucker for fig notes so onto the test list it goes 🙂

  10. aftelier says:

    Wow, thanks so much Portia for your dazzling review — your lush descriptions and personal memories conjure just the feelings I wanted to evoke with my Fig perfume!
    xo Mandy

  11. Gretchen says:

    Wait, wait, wait….Portia, you never said whether you and your dinner guests discovered that scents smell different or the same on all of you! Do tell! And, thank you for the review. I love to eat figs, but haven’t actually gone ahead and dipped into the fig frag world. I know that will be a rabbit hole it will be difficult to pull myself back out of, once down there….

  12. pollytechnic says:

    Sounds divine, Portia! I really love the smell of figs. I’ve got to try this one! I love your tale of spending days wandering Oxford Street in Sydney, window shopping!

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