Friday, December 19, 2008

Un Matin d'Orage (Stormy Morning): New Fragrance from Annick Goutal

A new fragrance by French chic brand Annick Goutal (famous for their bestseller Eau d'Hadrien) is scheduled for release this coming February: Un Matin d’Orage, created by longtime Goutal perfumer Isabelle Doyen. "Un Matin d’Orage is meant to channel the ambiance of a Japanese garden after a storm, with notes of gardenia, Sicilian lemon, perilla leaves, ginger, magnolia, jasmine sambac and Indonesian champaca."

This conceptually reminds me of both Après l'Ondée by Guerlain (the after-the-shower garden part) and Un Jardin Après la Mousson by Hermès, (the Monsoon storm evocation ) although from the listed notes one would deduce that the limpid bog water and transparent gloom might not be there. Although Annick Goutal already has a fragrance tagged Gardenia Passion in their line, the scent actually emits the ruberry feel of a proper tuberose rather than gardenia, so it's not like they're re-hashing ideas. The inclusion of Eastern champaca is an intriguing touch. Perilla leaves is an unusual note, quite Japonesque in feel: an annual herb (it belongs to the mint family), its most common species is Perilla frutescens var.japonica or more commonly known as shiso, mainly grown in India and East Asia. The essential oil, which is extracted from the leaves of the plant by steam distillation, consists of a variety of chemical compounds, varying depending on species. The most abundant however (comprising about 50–60% of the oil) is perillaldehyde ~most responsible for the aroma and taste of perilla. (please read about aldehydes here). A fragrance focusing on perilla/shiso is Shiso by Comme des Garcons.

The Annick Goutal brand has been owned by the Starwood Capital Group since 2005, who at the time were not certain what to do with the brand. But as soon as they realized that there is potential aplenty, since Goutal's profits have grown by 14% per year on a year by year basis, Starwood is planning on almost quadrupling the number of stand alone boutiques in the next five years. Russell Sternlicht, managing director, plans to upgrade and in some cases change the locations of its stores, which can be as small as 129 square feet. Some spaces will be remodeled to resemble an 860-square-foot door already opened on Avenue Victor Hugo in Paris. New stand-alone boutiques are scheduled for Italy, Spain, the U.S. and Dubai.
The Starwood Capital Group have been apparently already working hard to bring out that potential accounting for the latest group of fragrances "Les Orientalistes" (Encens Flamboyant, Myrrhe Ardente, Ambre Fetiche, Musc Nomade) as well as the lingerie line which was introduced in the spring. Since the plan is further developping Goutal into a lifestyle brand, an Annick Goutal cosmetics line is in the works as a companion to the already existing excellent skin-care line. Potpourri, household linens and jewelry by Virginie Monroe are also planned.

We will return with a full on review as soon as sufficient quantity ends on our lap!

Related reading on Perfume Shrine: the new Serge Lutens, Nuit de Cellophane (news), Nuit de Cellophane Review, Annick Goutal news and reviews.

News via wwd and N.Branch. Boutique pic via beauty-cult blog.


  1. That would be right Helg - no boutique for Australia.
    Mind you , what they should really be putting their money and time into is the staying power of many of the Goutal scents . Now that would be good and sales would go up too.
    I am not too sure of this new scent Helg - sounds very confusing to me.

  2. May I suggest Stormy Morning (or A Stormy Morning) rather than Morning of Storm. Literal translations don't usually work.

    I like *some* AG scents, but hate those weird, overblown bottles.

  3. I love AG fragrances, and my sister wears them exclusively, nothing else.

    This one sounds intriguing, so I know I will be testing it when it debuts.


  4. M,

    honey, it's a drag, I know... Why is Oz so far back on the commercial horizon, I'll never know. It's not like you're in Zimbaboue (not that I have anything against the latter, just commenting on the commercial aspects)

    I think some of the Goutals could profit from longevity extention, very true.

  5. Bela,
    you're absolutely right. I looked it over and it didn't sound natural. It's been corrected.

    I also like some in the line but not all (for instance I intensely dilike Petite Cherie and Eau de Charlotte or Quel Amour don't count me among their loyal fans...). I guess that happens with most lines though. Some just hit right spots and some not.

  6. R,

    thanks for commenting, how lovely that your sister is loyal to the line. Sometimes I daydream about doing that (and then I realize I couldn't!)
    I am expecting this with a certain anticipation. Let's hope for the best!

  7. Helg I think it has to do with our population number and the fact that we are such a long way away with shipping etc. Oh yes - we have big tax on Luxury items - Rrrr.

  8. It does ring with potential...

    Thanks for the peek.

  9. I'm cautiously optimistic. I must say, I prefer the square bottles they use to promote their more "masculine" fragrances (like Duel and Sables). Interesting that Eau D'Hadrien comes in both bottles (but is the same scent).

  10. This does sound interesting, it's a great name. I will look forward to trying it. I have never fallen completely for any of their scents although I quite want to.

  11. M,

    yes, I can see the reasoning better now. So annoying though! :-(

  12. S,

    you're very welcome. I am not sure with all those new releases, still something that features a different spin on the herbal (here, the shiso touch) might be a nice surprise; or not...We'll see soon enough!

  13. J,

    I like the lettering and the artwork on the masculine labels more than the bottles themselves myself. Except for the glorious purple of the Mandragore!
    The regular femnine bottles are nice enough (to me), but I haven't yet seen the point of the limited edition ones (which I don't especially like) or even the butterfly ones (which seem a little de trop to me).
    Usually I am not one to be too swayed by bottles however. If I like something smell-wise I don't care too much where it's encased.

  14. K,

    I am holding out until I try it myself :-)
    Have you tried Eau de Charlotte? I am not that partial to it, but I'd peg it to be more your speed. Also do try Ambre Fetiche if you can: a very wearable amber, transparent.

  15. Hi E, I have tried Eau de Charlotte and it didn't quite work but in theory I thought I would like it. So far Vanilla Exquise and Violette have been my favourites. Will try the Ambre Fetiche, I want to re try Musc Nomade as well.

  16. I can't wait to give this one a try. Am anxious to see what AG does w/champaca!

    I only own two AG's, Eau de Camille (which I absolutely adore) and Eau de Sud (which I am on the fence about). Sampled Ambre Fetiche the other day and liked it very much. I agree w/ E that is a "wearable" amber, not too heavy, accessible to those like me who don't want their ambers screaming down the halls :-) Ambre Fetiche also has a light tobacco note that has me obsessed w/ tobacco now! (as you know E!)


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