The Scented Hound

Abbreviated perfume & fragrance reviews from one man's perspective


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Sniffa New York!

SniffapaloozaLet me first say that I am a very deficient blogger…deficient in the fact that when I go to an event and meet the fantastic people in the industry I fail to record meetings, greetings and happenings through pictures.  And I have a great new iPhone so there’s no excuse.  So let me first apologize for the sparse use of original or borrowed pictures.

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Twisted Lily

This past weekend was a perfumed whirlwind centered around the 2016 Sniffapalooza Spring Fling.  Friday night kicked off the weekend event with an open house at Twisted Lily in Brooklyn.  Let me first say that I was proud of the fact that the Hound and hub managed to take the subway from Manhattan to Brooklyn during Friday night rush hour all by ourselves.  This is big, even though I may be lax in taking pictures, I am not lax in ordering Uber.  So the train took me off my princess perch.  If you have never had the pleasure of visiting Twisted Lily, Eric and Stamatis’s store offers the best selection of niche perfumes on the east coast.  Wide and varied, they have an incredible diverse and unique range of perfumes.  Even if you haven’t been there, check out their website as you can still order their perfumes online.  The open house was PACKED…but that made it all that much more fun.  It was great to see old friends and to make new ones as well….two of which included the team behind Masque Milano, Alessandro Brun and Riccardo Tedeschi.  We had a lovely chat where they introduced me to their latest release Romanza, a perfume inspired by Oscar Wilde’s Portrait of Dorian Gray.  It’s a narcissus based perfume that…well, the inspiration says a lot and I plan to complete a review so I’ll let you create your own picture right now.  Additionally, they introduced me to their upcoming release L’Attesa, an incredibly beautiful iris perfume that restored my interested in the flower as a note.  More to come on that as well.  But they also have redesigned their bottles and I have to say that they are incredibly luxurious and wonderful weighted.

IMG_0478Saturday morning was kicked off with the invasion of the Sniffa group to Bergdorf Goodman.  I was introduced to a new line I hadn’t heard of before, The Fragrance Kitchen.  This Kuwait based perfume house has been around since 2005, but is new to the US market.  They had a wide range of perfumes, but found my favorite to be “The Man from Impanema,” a really nice fresh citrus floral with a happy disposition.  How can you not love that name??!  I also managed to be seduced by Ex Nihilo’s Sweet Morphine, a vibrant pink floral perfume that spellbound me big time.  But of course, I didn’t purchase either of those, but instead was enabled by dear sweet Daisy as we both ended up purchasing a 3 ml bottle of Oud Elixir Precieux from Christian Dior.  This perfumed oil elixir is out of this world and one of those perfumes where people around me were wondering where the intoxicating fragrance was coming from as it just seems to not necessarily radiate from the skin, but from the atmosphere.  Riccardo Tedeschi from Masque was smelling it as we were wrapping up the purchase and he said it was the most magnificent thing he had smelled that day.  I have to admit, it’s like owning a little jewel.  And it’s not a heavy oud, but more of a smooth and smoky honeyed intoxicant.

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I must have these Diors!

The Sniffa lunch revolved around various speakers…but one highlight was a presentation from Barbara Herman introducing her newly released line of Eris Parfums.  Barbara, an aficionado on vintage and classic perfumes  and author of “Scent and Subversion” has taken this next step into the realm of creation with a trio of classic, yet modern-inspired animalic perfumes in collaboration with perfumer Antoine Lie and co-founder and business partner, the talented Jacinta Bunt.  Probably my favorite from the line is Night Flower…and of course, that’s only a teaser as you’ll soon hear more about it!

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Cecile, Mary and The Hound

Saturday night culminated in a wonderful small gathering with Puredistance, the perfume house that’s dear to my heart.  Their creations, including my beloved White, are all incredible and this gathering was centered around the introduction to the newest member of their collection, Sheiduna.  A stunner that is a departure from the rest of the line,  I was told that with this creation they were looking to bridge the elegance of Europe with the sensual and exciting nature of the Orient. Those in attendance had the chance to experience Sheiduna and it was incredible how different it developed on each wearer.  All I can say is that this oriental has a beautiful drydown that must be experienced.  I also finally had a chance to meet the ever gracious Mary Gooding, the Puredistance brand ambassador, as well as have a chat with Sheiduna’s perfumer, the amzaing Cecile Zarokian.  Sheiduna is set to be released some time later in 2016.

Sunday was a day spent with friends so I didn’t get a chance to experience day 2 of the Sniffapalooza, but that’s OK…I managed to pack in a sensory overload in a day and a half.

Next time however, I PROMISE to take pictures.  Well…I guess I should never promise should I.

Thanks to Daisy, Ari, Hajusuuri, Mary, Carlos, Michelyn and the many others for making this such a special weekend.

xoxoxoxox  Steve


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A Bergdorf Goodman Exclusive from Roja Parfums: Bergdorf

RP_BG_BergdorfSince 1901, Bergdorf Goodman has been providing the utmost in quality, service and luxury to New York City on the corner of 5th Avenue and 58th Street.  To celebrate this New York landmark, Master Perfumer Roja Dove was asked to create two exclusive perfumes that embody this legendary institution.  Back in September, I reviewed Goodman’s, Roja Dove’s creation named for the Bergdorf Goodman men’s store.  And now, Roja Dove has launched Goodman’s female counterpart, Bergdorf.  Together, they were both created to personify Bergdorf Goodman, the pinnacle of style, service and inspiration for over a century.

bergdorfgoodman2WHAT I SMELL:  Bergdorf’s opening is comprised of airy florals which dance around a bright bergamot.  The florals are lightly sugared and candied making the opening so incredibly bright and cheerful that it feels like you’re running through a summer field of delicate wild flowers in a warm and sunny afternoon.  The florals are hard to distinguish as they’re flawlessly blended, but the violet pops out as a cheery leader of the bunch.  The fragrance is grounded by a hazy base of sandalwood which warms the fragrance as it moves from the shiny and carefree opening, to more of a refined, graceful and full-bodied floral that is wrapped around the edges with pink pepper.  After around 15 minutes, Bergdorf turns into a ball gown.  The fragrance dances,  moves and twirls under a shimmering light.   It’s pretty, lush and full of gaiety.  As more time passes, the fragrance quiets as if the dancing slows and the party retreats to quieter and contained refinement.  The florals then become deeper and they’re met with this lush and comforting warmth that is very secure in its majestic self.  As beauty is not always what it seems, there is just a bit of dirty (I think it’s the castoreum) that brings a bit of realness to the florals as if to say, “all that glitters is not gold.”  My favorite part of the fragrance arrives after around an hour when Bergdorf’s becomes smooth as golden silk covering the windows to the garden outside, which at this point, the now lightly creamy florals are hauntingly and beautifully restrained.

Bergdorf Notes:

Top – Bergamot

Heart – May Flower, Orange Blossom, Heliotrope, Rose, Jasmine, Gardenia, Tuberose, Violet, Pink Pepper

Base –  Patchouli, Sandalwood, Cedarwood, Storax, Oakmoss, Vanilla, Benzoin, Musk, Frankincense, Castoreum

“Bergdorf Goodman, in my mind, has always embodied the refinement, glamour, and polish that is the very best of Manhattan.

With Bergdorf, I wanted to create an incredibly feminine scent that was unapologetically refined, elegant and sensual. A rich bouquet, with notes of Gardenia and May Flower, nestling on a base of Oakmoss and Vanilla”.

Roja Dove, Master Perfumer

Young Marie AntoinetteWHAT IT SMELLS LIKE TO ME:  The life of Marie Antoinette, starting with her carefree youth as an Archduchess of Austria through her infamous and larger than life reign as Queen of France.  It’s charming innocence in the beginning and grand, refined and strikingly beautiful throughout the end even when her world became oh so real.

THREE ADJECTIVES THAT DESCRIBE BERGDORF:  refined, graceful, stately

Marie-Antoinette_par_Elisabeth_Vigée-Lebrun_-_1783BOTTOM LINE:  The problem with reviewing a Roja Parfum creation is that the development is so seamless and pulling apart notes is next to impossible.  But what a great problem to have.  It’s just testament to the talent of Roja Dove.  I have to admit that at first, I was going to give Bergdorf’s a rating of 4 bones, but each time I wear this, my love grows stronger.  So in the end, I have to up the ante.  Bergdorf is a legendary perfume for a legendary store.

For those of you lucky to in be in NYC on Thursday December 4th, Roja Dove will be appearing at Bergdorf Goodman’s from 5 to 6pm.  This is your opportunity to have Roja Dove himself, sign your exclusive bottles of Bergdorf and Goodman’s!

  • Bone Rating: 4.5 out of possible 5 bones
  • Scent: Floral
  • Nose:  Roja Dove
  • Classification: Feminine
  • Expense: $545 for 50ml parfum, exclusively at Bergdorf Goodman via Roja Parfums’ Bergdorf Goodman Representative, Tom Crutchfield, 212-872-2768.

Sample courtesy of Bergdorf Goodman.


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A Bergdorf Goodman Exclusive from Roja Parfums: Goodman’s

Goodman's ParfumSince 1901, Bergdorf Goodman has been providing the utmost in quality, service and luxury to New York City on the corner of 5th Avenue and 58th Street.  To celebrate this New York landmark, Master Perfumer Roja Dove was asked to create a perfume exclusively for Goodman’s the Bergdorf Goodman men’s store.  Creating a perfume for such a legendary institution is no small feat.   To meet the challenge, Roja Dove wanted to create a perfume, that in his words, captures the “special mix of sophistication, excitement and pure luxury” of this exclusive and iconic store.

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Bergdorf Goodman – New York, NY

WHAT I SMELL:  Goodman’s opens with a rich and deep bergamot and cedar, quickly followed by a spiced mandarin.  The cedar retreats quickly to make room for this incredible jasmine.  It’s warm and lush and it feels like you’re walking (or should I say sinking in) on deep piled carpet.  The florals are heady while still maintaining a masculine edge of rounded and achingly beautiful thickness.  I love my florals and this bouquet meets all my standards of what a good floral mix should be comprised of;  rounded, voluminous, mixed and blended to perfection so that you can’t see distinguish one floral note from another.  There’s also a rather buttery tone that the florals rest on which after around 10 minutes lightens and retreats as do the heady aspects of the florals.   This makes way for a more woody timbre with the vetiver taking center stage in concert with an herbal and slightly peppery finish.  Soon enough, as if a fog has started to creep in, the frankincense starts to appear very lightly from below.  What started off as full on traditional floral is now taking a more exotic turn as the frankincense then becomes front and center.  The woody and dry patchouli mixed with the incense renders the fragrance to an almost powdery consistency.  I am amazed by the fragrance’s transformation; it feels as if you are making the descent from a temperate and fertile elevation down to a more dramatically arid zone in the space of 30 minutes. Goodman’s then takes on a more sober and formal turn as the fragrance settles into quiet dignity with a warmish patchouli and vetiver with streams of incense weaving throughout.  That, combined with just an ever so slight sweetness and a bite of civet, lets you know that although the perfume is dignified, there’s still a bit of mischief that abounds.

From the Bergdorf Goodman website:

A dynamic burst of Mandarin and Bergamot creates a fresh foil for a rich bouquet of Rose, Jasmine, Ylang Ylang, Neroli, and May Flower, enlivened with Cinnamon Leaves, Cinnamon, Cardamom, and Coriander, warmed by Cedarwood, Patchouli, and Vetiver, nestling on a refined, sensual base of Frankincense, Castoreum, and Civet.

Top Notes:  Bergamot, Mandarin

Heart Notes:  Neroli, Rose, Jasmine, Jasmine Sambac, Ylang Ylang, May Flower

Base Notes:  Cinnamon Leaves, Cinnamon, Cardamom, Coriander, Cedarwood, Patchouli, Vetiver, Frankincense, Castoreum, Civet

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A Royal Ride

WHAT IT SMELLS LIKE TO ME:  An 18th century French royal carriage ride; leaving the majesty of Versailles to journey to the historically holy Avignon. 

THREE ADJECTIVES THAT DESCRIBE GOODMAN’S:  dignified, calm, self-assured

WHAT OTHERS ARE SAYING ABOUT GOODMAN’S:  I haven’t found any other reviews thus far.

BOTTOM LINE:  If you look solely at the notes, the fragrance could read like many others as individual parts.  However, like Bergdorf Goodman, Roja Dove has used the finest of materials to create this incredibly luxurious compliment to this grand institution of enduring style, refinement and quality.  I have to admit that the floral aspects of the opening and of the heart blew me away and I wish the fragrance would have stayed there forever.  Mr. Dove if you’re listening, maybe this could be the inspiration for a new exclusive Scented Hound perfume??!

  • Bone Rating: 4 out of possible 5 bones
  • Classification: Masculine
  • Expense: $545 for 50ml parfum, exclusively at Bergdorf Goodman via the website or by directly calling Roja Parfums Bergdorf Goodman Representative, Tom Crutchfield at 212-872-2768.

Sample courtesy of Tom Crutchfield, Roja Parfums.