The Scented Hound

Abbreviated perfume & fragrance reviews from one man's perspective


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Xerjoff Oesel

WHAT I SMELL:  Oesel opens like the dawn of a new day with a creamy, smooth, layered orange blossom.  It’s as if the sun warmed blossoms have exploded with their fragrant projection just at the peak of the late morning.  The florals are rich, thick and bountiful without being overtly juicy or sweet.  The mix of florals including jasmine, mimosa and Bulgarian rose are blended as if they were carried in the most fragrant nosegay and are melded so seamlessly as to defy you to be able to distinguish them, but for the voluminous orange blossom.  In addition,  Oesel is warm and full of bright yellow hazy sun and when smelled on the skin, the perfume retreats to the depth of your lungs.  After a while, a consistent and dried wood begins to float under the orange blossom giving the perfume an added dimension with just the slightest of dirt and earth.  Oesel is golden in every sense of the word.

From Fragrantica  –

Oesel perfume from the Shooting Stars Collection is a symphony of bright and rich notes perfectly mixed with the best raw ingredients. Orange blossom and petitgrain from Paraguay lead the path to the heart of Bulgarian rose and Sambac jasmine, which are skillfully wrapped in sophisticated mimosa and white flowers. Graceful result of this mixed breed is the ambery wooden base of Indian patchouli, cedar and tobacco flower, which exudes the character, depth and persistence.

WHAT IT SMELLS LIKE TO ME:  An orange blossom boutounniere…the perfect perfume for your wedding day.

THREE WORDS THAT DESCRIBE OESEL: rapturous, uplifting, joyous

WHAT OTHERS ARE SAYING ABOUT OESEL:  Now Smell This, CaFleureBon, Confessions of a Perfume Nerd

BOTTOM LINE:  I finally set forth cleaning up my office and the stash of perfume samples that were invading every corner of the room.  There were quite a few of the perfumes I didn’t even realize I had in my possession.  So off came the tops of many for a quick smell.  Oesel was the loveliest of surprises and I wish I had tested it sooner.  In fact I loved it so much so that the next day I purchased a bottle.  How’s that for an endorsement?!

  • Bone Rating:  5 out of possible 5 bones
  • Scent:  Oriental Floral
  • Classification: Marketed for men, but could easily be worn by a woman.
  • Expense: Varied…mid $200 for 100 ml eau de parfum


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Signature Wild by Art de Parfum

WHAT I SMELL:  Signature Wild’s opening is bright and sparkling with a fresh blast of herbal spice which moves quickly to a bone dry flattened fruit.  The perfume takes on a slightly sour edge that feels like it has been drained of juice and has been left out to dry and age.  Soon, the sour and light decay start to retreat and a warm labdanum seems to roll on in like a fog covering the horizon.  At this point, the perfume becomes more rugged and incredibly sexy.  There’s a hefty beef that’s evident, but it’s not in the way that overt…instead it radiates confidence.  A quiet and subdued leather is then met with a lightly sweetened balsam and a buzzing vetiver.  Here the perfume remains…unassuming with subdued sexiness that’s easy to wear.

From the Art de Parfum website:

UNAPOLOGETICALLY DARK AND WILD.

This highly addictive fragrance combines a powerful leather accord with the boozy and syrupy davana herb and sweet delicacy of orange blossom

TOP NOTES: cinnamon, davana, cardamon

MIDDLE NOTES: orange blossom, dried fruits, radiant woods

BASE NOTES: labdanum (cistus), leather, sandalwood, Peru balsam, Haitian vetiver

WHAT IT SMELLS LIKE TO ME:  Robert Mitchum.  Smoldering sexuality and quiet virility.  A little dangerous and always in control.

THREE WORDS THAT DESCRIBE SIGNATURE WILD:  self-assured, unpretentious, manly

WHAT OTHERS ARE SAYING ABOUT SIGNATURE WILD:  Colognoisseur, The Scented Apprentice, I Scent You A Day

BOTTOM LINE:  Art de Parfum debuted five fragrances in 2016.  Signature Wild is my favorite in the line, but there is something for everyone from a refreshing cologne (Gin & Tonic) to a beautiful and mysterious rose oud (Sensual Oud).  Nicely done Art de Parfum!

  • Bone Rating:  4 out of possible 5 bones
  • Scent:  Oriental Leather
  • Classification: Masculine
  • Expense: $135 for 50 ml parfum extrait

*Sample provided by Art de Parfum.  Opinion my own.


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New Release: Mandrake by Parfums Quartana

quartanamandrake

Parfums Quartana’s collection of perfumes, Les Potions Fatales explores the treacherous beauty and intriguing lore behind nine of the world’s most poisonous flowers. At once tantalizing and perilous, these mortal fleurs have been used to nefarious ends throughout history. These flowers and the aptly named perfumes are seductive on the outside but are ultimately dark, sinister, and dangerous.   The poison that wooed me and called my name was Mandrake.

WHAT I SMELL:   Mandrake opens with a snappy bergamot which quickly turns to more of a ripened red apple which swiftly moves into a Bazooka bubble gum accord.  But that soon turns to a soft and sweet floral that’s creamy smooth and completely comforting.  The sweetness never hits a high pitch and as it develops it levels itself out, but there’s just enough sparkle to make this really delightful and engaging.  The perfume begins to linger in this lightly sweetened, cotton candy and bubble gum creamed state for quite some time.  That’s not a bad thing and don’t think because it’s has the bubble gum accord that this is for teenagers; it’s not.  After quite some time, a bit of leather appears along with a muted spice and a light incense.  At this point, the perfume is irresistible, sexy and overwhelmingly enticing.  In the end, the perfume melds into a wonderful sweetened patchouli and it reminded me of Dior’s Gris Montaigne…which is a good thing!

From the Parfums Quartana website:

In biblical scripture, mandrake was referred to as ‘the love plant’ and was through to have male fertility enhancing properties; as such it was mentioned by Shakespeare in “Midsummer Night’s Dream” as a cure for erectile dysfunction. Long used in Wiccan ritual, its roots were thought to emit a fatal, supersonic scream when dug up. Because mandrake actually smells of strong red apple, we gave the fragrance a red fruity heart but grounded it with birch leaf and birch root to suggest the roots of the flower dug into the soil. We also gave the fragrance a sharp aromatic note to suggest its infamous, deadly shriek.

Crisp Apple, Pomegranate, Birch Leaf, Birch Root, Bergamot, Mandrake Flower Accord, Rhubarb, Cardamom, Sueded Leather, Deadly Addiction Accord, Patchouli, Madagascar Vanilla, Sandalwood, Tonka

386px-dale_robertson_tales_of_wells_fargo_1957WHAT IT SMELLS LIKE TO ME: Yesteryear cowboy…rather clean cut with just a little rugged and lots of handsome and sexy.

THREE WORDS THAT DESCRIBE MANDRAKE:  inviting, tempting, satisfying

WHAT OTHERS ARE SAYING ABOUT MANDRAKE: Colognoisseur

BOTTOM LINE:  The full line of the Parfums Quartana Les Potions Fatales perfumes are each interesting in their own way and completely different and varied, from the strange and unique (Bloodflower, Wolfsbane and Midnight Datura) to the more traditional (Hemlock, Lily of the Valley) with Mandrake fitting somewhere in between.  I highly recommend checking them out!

  • Bone Rating:  3.5 out of possible 5 bones
  • Scent:  Leather
  • Nose:  Carlos Vinals
  • Classification: Marketed as masculine, but I found this to be very unisex.
  • Expense: $145 for 50 ml Eau de Parfum

Sample courtesy of Twisted Lily Fragrance Boutique and Apothecary.  Opinion my own.