The Scented Hound

Abbreviated perfume & fragrance reviews from one man's perspective


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Robert Graham Valour

WHAT I SMELL:   Valour has an incredibly wonderful opening that’s made up of bergamot and brown sugar goodness.  It tingles and sparkles like light brown amber crystals.  Not long after the initial opening, the light sugared deliciousness begins to warm as a wonderful creaminess begins to smooth out the sparkle.  The brown sugar (which never is too sweet) feels as if its mixed within the cream along with the lightest note of coffee.  At the same time a clary sage enters adding a marvelously herbaled dimension to the lightly gourmand mix. Eventually, the perfume moves away from the enjoyably edible and takes on a more traditional amber tone.  Valour feels as if it should be heavy and hefty, but instead it remains restrained and contained.  In the end, Valour remains an ambered hue of masculinity wrapped up in gentle sophistication.

From the Robert Graham website:

The art of audacity and boldness for the loyal and the dynamic. The bulldog has always been a symbol of fierce individuality and willful intelligence a fitting way to top off such a determined essence housed in a faceted decanter and finished with a foulard print. This bottle gives a nod to the well-dressed modern gentlemen.

This blended essence walks the line between fresh and sybaritic mixing top notes clary sage coffee santos and amber wood to give it the epitome of eclectic sophistication.

WHAT IT SMELLS LIKE TO ME:  A 1970s sophisticate.

THREE WORDS THAT DESCRIBE VALOUR:  easy, smooth, subtle

WHAT OTHERS ARE SAYING ABOUT VALOUR: CaFleureBon

BOTTOM LINE:  Valour is one of three perfumes in the “Collector’s Trio” which also includes Fortitude and Courage, but Valour is my favorite.  The perfume is nicely refined and very easy to wear.  It does have a nostalgic vibe to it, which to me, makes it all that more attractive.

  • Bone Rating:  4 out of possible 5 bones
  • Scent: Oriental Spicy
  • Classification: Masculine
  • Expense:  $125 for 100 ml blended essence (I’m not sure if that means cologne, eau de toilette or eau de parfum)


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New Release: Puredistance Warszawa & Sample Draw

WHAT I SMELL:   Warszawa has a surprising opening with a sweetened violet that has a candied coating, which smells very similar to Valentine candy hearts (the kind with sayings on them).  That sweet opening calms considerably in a few minutes letting in a fresh, yet restrained grapefruit note.  What seemed not so subtle at the initial spritz becomes very subtle in a short matter of time.   After the initial violet and grapefruit impressions, the perfume becomes seamless as individual notes blend without distinction.  Instead, the perfume moves to a sweet and tarty and lightly soured persona.  The perfume is sweet without being overtly so and the tartness when breathed in, seems to pull the air out to constrict your nostrils.  In addition, a light spice peppers the top of the perfume.  In a way, it feels rather like an exotic confectionary treat.  After 15 minutes or so, a light powder begins to dust the perfume and it now feels very bright and feminine while at the same time warm and inviting.  Warszawa unfolds like a day’s journey; the perfume starts bright and sweet like the dawn of a new day.  As the day wears on, the spice of the florals add life and energy and then finally, the perfume provides a finishing crescendo as if entering the grand ball at the end of the evening.  This is where the perfume settles into its final incarnation; a beauty that is unique as the noble city that bears its name.

From the Puredistance website:

Inspired by the class and elegance of Polish women and the rich history of the city of Warsaw, WARSZAWA evokes the chic of the golden days of Fashion and Perfume. This perfume has style, warmth – great depth of character – and will make you feel beautiful in a lush way. It will transport you to another world, a dreamy world, where you will feel elated and dizzy – in a good way.

Notes:  Galbanum, Grapefruit, Violet leaf, Jasmin Absolute, Broom absolute, Orris butter, Patchouli, Vetiver and Styrax.

WHAT IT SMELLS LIKE TO ME:  Pastel flowers – soft and muted, very feminine, very retro

THREE WORDS THAT DESCRIBE WARSZAWA:  semi-sweet, semi-tart, classic

WHAT OTHERS ARE SAYING ABOUT WARSZAWA:  Odiferess, Parfumistans Blogg, Perfume Posse

BOTTOM LINE:  The first time I put on Warszawa, I wondered if this would be the one Puredistance perfume that wouldn’t be a love for me.  The sweetened opening was rather a surprise, but after the perfume began to emerge with its softer and more powdery edge I knew I was hooked.   Warszawa isn’t an all-occasion everyday perfume.  Instead, it’s a perfume you wear when you feel the need to be “grand.”

  • Bone Rating:  4 out of possible 5 bones
  • Scent: Floral
  • Nose:  Antoine Lie
  • Classification: Leans feminine
  • Expense:  295 Euros for 60 ml parfum extrait.  Also available in 100 ml.

DRAW:  The Puredistance team is graciously offering a 2 ml sample to three lucky Scented Hound readers.  This draw is open to all readers worldwide.  To enter, please complete the following:

  1. “Like” the Puredistance Facebook Page
  2. Enter a comment on this post as to why you would like to experience Warszawa or comment on your favorite Puredistance perfume.

To be included in the draw, the above two requirements must be completed by midnight Eastern Standard Time on November 11, 2017.  Three winners will be chosen at random and announced the week starting on November 12, 2017.  Good luck!


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New Release: Jardin Nocturne by Shalini

WHAT I SMELL:  Jardin Nocturne opens with a soft warm enveloping jasmine with a mildly spicy and intoxicating saffron.  The perfume moves deep into your lungs with a spellbinding sensuality.  A quiet oud meditates in the background as if it’s a secret veil moving oh so gently under a moonlit sky; and combined with the saffron it creates an effect of the lightest of leather.  A facet that I love in this perfume is that the oud is used in such a perfect and elegant manner, never coming to the forefront to overcome the perfume.  Instead, front and center is the night-blooming jasmine which radiates like the beaming moonlight.  As Jardin Nocturne develops, it weaves itself slowly down a garden path.  Each step along the way the perfume continues to unfold its mysterious secrets.  Its lightly wafting tendrils rise and tease the wearer and those she seduces as the warmth vibrates of the skin as if it has a pulse, enveloping the wearer with a carnal aura.  Jardin Nocturne is a magical perfume.

“Le Tourbillions” Lalique flacon

From Shalini:

Moonlight reflecting upon the water.  A night garden filled with night-blooming flowers, ponds, waterfalls, fountains, winding paths, discreet garden benches where lovers meet under the stars.

The peace, beauty and the light of the night in full bloom…

The soft sounds of the night, the fireflies lighting up the atmosphere…

Jardin Nocturne reflects the nuance and poetry of such a garden…

Jardin Nocture is inspired by the night air.

Notes: Night Blooming Jasmine absolute from India, Assam Oud, Saffron, Mysore Sandalwood, Musk

The Music of the Faun, Ferdinand Keller, 1910

WHAT IT SMELLS LIKE TO ME:  Ferdinand Keller’s – The Music of the Faun

THREE WORDS THAT DESCRIBE JARDIN NOCTURNE:  seductive, serene, sublime

WHAT OTHERS ARE SAYING ABOUT JARDIN NOCTURNE:  CaFleureBon, Colognoisseur

BOTTOM LINE:  Good things come to those who wait.  Over 10 years after introducing her debut perfume Shalini, designer Shalini, once again in a collaboration with Maurice Roucel has created a perfume that lives up to her debut perfume.  I loved Shalini for the fact that is was supremely feminine it all its white floral quiet beauty.  With Jardin Nocturne, the perfume is unabashedly sensual.  It’s a fragrance that fills the room with seductive mystery that will beckon anyone towards its heavenly refrain.  Jardin Nocturne was definitely worth the long wait.

  • Bone Rating:  4.5 out of possible 5 bones
  • Scent: Oriental Floral
  • Nose: Maurice Roucel
  • Classification: Leans feminine, but easily unisex
  • Expense:  $500 for 50 ml parfum or $2,400 for the Lalique crystal flacon “Le Tourbillions.”  Available in November at Aedes de Venustas.