There's a LOT of conflicting stuff going on in Garrigue, but it makes sense when you view it as a combination of a lot of ideas that were popular in the 1988 when this came out. First, there's a full-on oily powerhouse chypre at the core of this, replete with a big slug of tarragon. Then there's also a loud Joop-inspired mix of cherry cough syrup and lavender, as well as a bunch of salty calone and GIT chemicals, so it has a heavy marine aspect as well.
In the end, Garrige is trying to be a powerhouse AND a sweet fruity scent AND an aquatic all at once and, like many things that try to be everything to everybody, I think it overreaches and ends up not really working as anything it's trying to be. The relentless fruit cheapens the chypre elements, while the artificiality of the marine notes make the fruit smell gross, while the oily earthiness of the tarragon makes for a really awkward mix with the GIT chemicals. That being said, I can also see how powerhouse aficionados may see this as a classier version of a cherry aquatic worth pursuing as such, but, despite how hard Garrigue tries, I just kind of think it's a mess.
Mild thumbs-up. The term "Garrigue" is a French (Provencal) word which means "the scent of a breeze blowing through resinous shrubs, herbs, and baked earth." This scent attempts to convey that experience.
MPG's notes are as follows:
Top - lemon, bergamot, juniper
Mid - lavender, sage, rosemary
Base - sandalwood, musk
Has a plummy bergamot opening. A bit of lavender but mostly sage at this point. The scent is a bit sweet, and quite powerfully aromatic. Many MPGs fall into this sort of style. This does have a slight baked-earth note. The herbal notes grow in intensity. The dry-down has a very "fresh" musk note which I feel is a bit synthetic. That sort of brisk, lemony-musk note is also found in Trumper's Wellingon. It reminds me of dusty lemon drops. The final dry-down is cool, lemony and herbal.
For me, not bottle-worthy but interesting.
It may be blasphemous of me, but Garrigue's top notes remind me of…Green Irish Tweed. There's some of the same sweet, fruity/green fougère happening here, only it's a lot less bright and perky. In fact, for the first half hour, I'm tempted to call Garrigue GIT's the darker, dirty cousin; what GIT might be if it weren't so wholesome, so ruddy-cheeked, and so hell-bent on pleasing everybody. Needless to say, I find Garrigue much more interesting.
Garrigue soon goes its own way, though. There's a good deal of lavender (and perhaps even sage or rosemary,) in this blend, along with some musk and an interesting salty accord that together suggest dusty skin that's long been exposed to sun. The opening sweetness dissipates pretty quickly, and the drydown is all musk and aromatic woods with a sharp, peppery edge. I agree with previous reviewers that Garrigue is a less daring scent than many others from this house, but it's by no means dull. It is versatile, easy to wear, and well-crafted. I'd recommend it if you're looking for a good daily wear fougère and have grown bored with GIT, Curve, and Cool Water. This has the quality of GIT, but it's quite a bit less bland.