Yeah, this is basically Creed's version of vintage Kouros. Very strong and pungent, yet strangely alluring at times. Ultimately, I always had trouble finding an occasion to wear this one. It's not hard to understand why it was discontinued in the more modern era.
The truth of the matter here is I could just call Creed Orange Spice (1950) expensive YSL Kouros (1981) and be done with it, but we also have to go down the chicken and the egg rabbit hole about whether this stuff really came out in 1950 or not. Let's just suspend disbelief for a minute that a very clearly 80's style powerhouse somehow did manage to come out 30 years beforehand but totally in secret as a bespoke fragrance for whomever Creed claims, then finally saw resurrection and re-release by Olivier Creed to show the world the secret prestigious history of the house, all in an attempt to *checks notes* justify the price. Whatever the case may be and whenever this stuff actually was made, it really didn't start appearing for sale until after Yves Saint Laurent released Kouros, then "valuted" like almost all of the eau de toilette range save Fleurs de Bulgarie (1980), Green Irish Tweed (1985), Bois du Portugal (1987), Erolfa (1992), Néroli Sauvage (1994), plus a handful of others that saw upgrade to eau de parfum as Creed ditched the secret history marketing angle. It's kind of a shame really, because what is likely the upmarket twin to the memorable Kouros, and likely co-composed alongside Pierre Bourdon like Green Irish Tweed was, is now an ancient memory only to be sniffed by savvy collectors who stocked up when it was killed off, or hedge fund retirees who go on drunken eBay benders and spend thousands on vaulted Creeds just to photobomb Basenotes or Instagram.
The major difference between Creed Orange Spice and Kouros is the removal of the fougère elements from the core experience of Orange Spice to be replaced with chypre ones, bringing it closer to Kouros Fraîcheur (1993) in scent, although the way Creed does chypre differs considerably from house most other do chypre accords. Orange Spice opens as it sounds, with a dull mandarin orange and bergamot note immediately overtaken by the civet and patchouli in the composition. There are soapy notes of neroli and geranium alongside muguet that remind me some of Moustache by Rochas (1949), but the heady mixture of spice that denotes the second part of this Creed's name kicks into high gear. We see cinnamon, cumin, clove, and coriander mixing together into a dry "brown" note, that then rides on top of Creed's famous house ambergris, some oakmoss, sandalwood, and bit of labdanum. The overall effect of Orange Spice is a dirtier version of the main feel found in Kouros Fraîcheur, in that you get the citruses, the animalic musk, but very little of the soapiness beyond the neroli and light application of white florals. Orris, jasmine, artemisia, clary sage, all the things that smooth and polish any version of Kouros are absent or dialed way down in Orange Spice, letting that spice and breathy Creed ambergris do most of the talking. Wear time is appreciably long, and sillage is strong, but Orange Spice is not the projection nuke Kouros can be, nor has the "urinal cake" juxtaposition of soap and crotch.
Orange Spice even in discontinuation is ironically cheaper per ml too in the aftermarket, but since it doesn't try to be a wolf in sheep's clothing like Kouros Fraîcheur, it has admittedly less versatility. Funny that Creed made a slightly more luxurious take on this vibe by removing complexity instead of adding to it, then pumping in more naturals to increase diffusion but at the cost of sheer power, resulting in taking what was then a relatively mainstream style and putting a legitimately niche twist on it. There's no proof Pierre Bourdon helped make this either, but considering Orange Spice is one of many Creeds that closely resemble his work, I'd place my money on that bet before betting on it actually being from 1950. Maybe I'll never understand a brand that wants to be a popular household name but also paradoxically among the most exclusive brands in existence, but then again I don't get "have your cake and eat it too" as an idiom. Orange Spice is an ultra-unicorn like all such vaulted scents from the house, and is for the hardest of the hardcore collectors only, and then only for those with enough money to throw away on the absolutely unreal prices people want for this stuff. Hell, even a 5ml vial sells for $60, which is basically at least a small bottle of Kouros right there. I enjoy Orange Spice quite a bit and if it littered discounters like most modern Creeds, I'd probably go for one, but as it stands now, I'll stay on my side of the velvet rope. Thumbs up.
Just take Creed's Citrus Bigarrade and add some cinnamon and peppery spices, and you now have...Creed's Orange Spice!
This is a citrus-spice scent that has a surprising level of longevity, which is not typical of citrus scents in general. There is an interesting soapiness which I think comes from the exotic ambergris in the base.
Masculine and pleasant throughout the wear cycle. Orange Spice, if you can find a sample / bottle, definitely is worth checking out!!
I finally got a hold of some Creed Orange Spice, and I must say it was worth the wait. This is a wonderful blend of orange, neroli, bergamot and well...spices. I guess the slight animalic comes from the bad breath vibe one gets from ambergris, but it definitely doesn't smell like that in Orange Spice. This is completely posh and well groomed in nature in my opinion. A true gentleman's fragrance to be sure. Wish I had a big flacon of the stuff! There is a soapy aspect that smells like the old powder hand soap I remember in grade school many years ago, but it doesn't detract, sits in the back nicely and only adds to the overall enjoyment for me. I do believe I could wear Orange Spice everyday! I wish Creed would re-release this with no changes to the formula. A true classic!
2 big thumbs up...I love citrus and I love Kouros...this is the best of both worlds...opens with a blast of animalic/spicy/aromatic orange in your face...yes,it does have an antiquated vibe, but it matters not to me...I couldn't care less if a fragrance smells old when it smells this good and brings me olfactory pleasure...i picture the room and sheets smelling like this after a hot and passionate menage a trois between Kouros/New York/Habit Rouge...
just don't understand why the good stuff gets vaulted and discontinued...