Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Note Down on Your Notebook: Must Test This!

In case you're the type of person who is tidy and organised and makes lists of things to sample, get your pen and notebook or your spreadsheet and mouse and jolt down this: the new Vetiver (still unnamed) by Andy Tauer. And if not, do make an effort regardless. I am telling you, this is not to be missed! Although this is not supposed to be a full review, I just couldn't resist the temptation to give you a first glimpse into how it smells. It's peppery, bracing and rich head-on, with a complementary, bitter hesperidic note that segues on to a green accord and an underlying discreet sweetness that doesn't divert from the main character: the deep vetiver. It lasts for hours on skin and is very sexy!

The sample was a pre-sniff of the upcoming Vetiver fragrance which I was lucky to receive in Andy's "3 years perfume blogging" sample giveaway (amazing how time flies, isn't it?). It is a fragrance built around vetiver from Java, with fresh grapefruit, lots of black pepper and green clary notes in the head. Lily of the valley contrasts the dark vetiver and crisp Cedar wood, leading over to a soft ambergris base with hints of Tonka beans and cistus.

Vetiver is in itself a wonderful material for perfumery and I hope to be able at some point to devote more time to it on these pages. And even though the niche market is rather crowded with things "vetiver this" and "vetiver that", this new fragrance has its own deserved place. It seems men perfumers often excel in producing what they themselves would wear and this is such a case (I can picture Tauer sporting this wonderfully), which echoes beautifully the legend of Jean Paul Guerlain creating his Vetiver for himself. Or so the story goes...
In any case although Vetiver by Guerlain has been going citruisier and citruisier and lighter in later years, Tauer's reverts us to the essence of the tangly root with a richness that was hinted at the vintage Guerlain but never fully explored. It will be interesting to further test Tauer's take alongside Vero Kern's amazing leathery Onda and Vetiver Extraordinaire by Malle, which both also take vetiver to extremis.
Andy will launch it October 2008 and I am already alotting a budget for it, for myself and my loved one.

He is also working on a Lily of the Valley scent and a Chypre Rose, of whose developments he often speaks on his blog, so we're in for surprises in the future.

Pic from early flyer on Tauer's blog, somewhat manipulated by me.


  1. Anonymous11:44

    I love Vetiver, therefore i am really curious. Your description sounding so marvellous, helg! I've been wishing for long for a rooty AND slightly sweetish vetiver, Onda being adored, too.

  2. Hopefully a sample is coming to me as well. (eagerly waiting)

  3. It sounds wonderful. I missed the cutoff as I hadn't read about it until they all had been spoken for. That will teach me to keep up in the summer!

  4. Dear N,

    I hope you come to love it. It's rich and with a bracing grapefruit note which is very refreshing, yet it has a slight sweetness as it develops.
    Isn't Onda fab? ;-)

  5. Dear L,

    looking forward to your impressions!

  6. Dear K,

    it certainly is! That's all right, because I think Andy will be giving out samples again as soon as it's off to launch with a proper name, so you stand another chance to try it.

  7. Drats! I missed out on a sample. Andy is very generous with his samples, though. I have had samples in the mail from him just out of the blue, without asking.

    I just can't wait to be able to try this vetiver - it sounds like a departure from his normal, heavily fragrant scents to something lighter and more aromatic.

  8. Anonymous15:45

    For me Vetiver is an area yet to explore. And Chypre Rose....hm I start to dream....;-)

  9. M,

    he certainly is! Which is so refreshing!
    He will probably be hosting another giveaway when it launches, so I hope you try it then.
    His style is evident in this one as well. Have you tried Reverie au jardin for a lighter frag? Very nice!

  10. Lavinia,

    it's a worthy first step in that direction.
    I admit I am biting my nails on what he'll do with Chypre as well ;-)

  11. Ooo... all three sound wonderful! I can't wait.

  12. Nice to meet another lucky one ;-)

    I missed the whole pepper thing in this fragrance at the first sniff - smelled it as it was a part of a clary sage spiciness. Now I do recognize pepper - a lot of it indeed.

  13. Dain,

    I trust the Chypre specifically should be something to be hotly anticipated.

  14. Welcome Aromax and thanks for stopping by!

    I love pepper (and spicy things in general) so I make an extra point of noticing these things. On the other hand I'm glad I didn't get medicinal from the clary sage (sometimes I do), which would ruin it for me. I love my vetivers rich and earthy and this one has an uplifting quality thanks to the grapefruit note.

  15. Thanks for your welcome. I do like your blog and admire your knowledge on perfumery and history.

    You are very right about the clary sage. I have personal situation with this one - a kind of love and hate pattern. It can become medicinal indeed (or in my own perception - "too herbal"). But it looks like Andy tamed a wild herb and taught him (or is clary sage a girl?) some manners.

    By the way I stopped by Chanel today to spray some Sycomore on my skin. Another lovely vetiver. Not comparable with Andy's as they has different characters - I think I like them both.

  16. Thank you for your most kind words, you make me blush.

    So you do feel like I do! There is something weird about medicinal notes: sometimes they're coaxed into giving an unexpected twist into things and make them truly interesting and sometimes they just remind us of being at the first aid room getting our wounds bandaged :-))

    I like Sycomore as well: different, will probably devote a post to it as well.

  17. I just received my sample today in the mail! Can't believe I actually made the cutoff - I usually miss these things. Haven't tried it yet, but look forward to it. And hey, there are two of us Karins on the board. :-)

  18. Now you have me confused: which (Karin) is which? LOL

    I am glad you got it in time and hope you like it! :-)


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