Oscar de la Renta Gentleman 
Oscar de la Renta (2016)

Average Rating:  6 User Reviews

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Oscar de la Renta Gentleman by Oscar de la Renta

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About Oscar de la Renta Gentleman by Oscar de la Renta

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Oscar de la Renta
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Oscar de la Renta Gentleman is a men's fragrance launched in 2016 by Oscar de la Renta

Fragrance notes.

  1. Top Notes

  2. Heart Notes

  3. Base Notes

Reviews of Oscar de la Renta Gentleman by Oscar de la Renta

There are 6 reviews of Oscar de la Renta Gentleman by Oscar de la Renta.

A posthumous tribute to the most impactful designer of the 20th century, Oscar de la Renta Gentlemen feels quiet, reserved, and 'nice'. The loud and proud ‘Pour Lui' past and the head turning of “He's here”, this is not. Sadly, this is strictly in line with the muted expectations of the present epoch of designer scents. Despite the potential and the imagined possibility, Gentlemen make its entrance in rather quiet fashion, opening with a cool bergamot and ripe grapefruit spritz that wears a cardamom cuff on one hand and a champagne toast on the other, before a minty green, herbaceous accord of Egyptian geranium, rosemary and black oolong tea take the floor, where eventually, a base of amber resins with sweet musky hints, a relatively sharp vetiver and bare honeyed leatherwood finish off the salute in almost a creamy sandalwood likeness... The powerhouse aficionado would probably be adding more unruly accents to his language due to the reduced presence of ‘nice'. Gentlemen is a partial fit to an iconic figure, not a whole kind of love; especially one who set legendary precedents and lived up to the Oscar de la Renta adage of “what makes a women beautiful”. Worth owning? Certainly, a citrus vetiver, that is sparkling, spicy, creamy and 'nice'. If the ode is more in part to Oscar in his stylish house robe and pajama enjoying a concentrated game of dominoes in the parlor before bed, then Gentlemen succeeds. Truly, a larger than life figure would have warranted a perfume grander and apropos to a timeless past, present and future rather than join the heap of discount bins. Nonetheless, a lovely cheapie that deserves to be owned for the gesture and for being 'nice'!

Promising for the first half the fragrance. Scratchy norlimbanol for the last half. Not unpleasant, but the drydown is the most important part of a fragrance to me, and I can't abide the synthetics used in Gentleman. Cool bottle, though.

Oscar de la Renta doesn't throw many masculine scents our way, and it's easy to see why, as the ever-popular original Oscar de la Renta Pour Lui (1981) was such a revolutionary mossy floral leather chypre that it put a period on an entire genre developing in circles of men's fragrance design at the time, and defined not only the way mature guys would smell for the next 30+ years, but the way Oscar de la Renta himself smelled when alive. Oscar for Men (2000) was a long-awaited freshie follow-up that mostly fell flat on it's face since youngsters don't value the brand, outside the women to which the house mostly caters, and older guys at the time wouldn't go near anything containing an aromachemical base even if you paid them. Well, the reality almost two decades past the release of Oscar for Men is aromachems are here to stay thanks to IFRA regulations squeezing out natural essences, so we might as well make the best if it, and the house of Oscar de la Renta sure did with Oscar de la Renta Gentleman (2016). I know it might be hard to get past the domino-shaped bottle, and the temptation to reduce the packaging to vintage Avon-inspired lowbrow kitsch is strong, but the idea was to celebrate the favorite past time of the late designer, which was the game of dominoes. Everything else about Oscar de la Renta Gentleman has little to do with this theme, if anything. Oscar de la Renta Gentleman uses both norlimbanol and ambroxan in the base, so guys who still haven't left the 80's will probably want to stay away, and likewise the artisinal niche fellas who think Creed is too mainstream will also likely not find much redemption here, but granted you've made peace with the state of modern designer perfumery, this isn't bad.

The basic gist of Oscar de la Renta Gentleman is to present itself as an old-school aromatic citrus and leather chypre like the stuff that was beating around in the 1950's through 1970's, with a bold bergamot note front and center, nailed down with herbs and a dry base. Since real sandalwood is a no-no without a niche budget (and $500 price tag) in the 21st century, the clever use of a synthetic "karmawood" and cedar blend to replace it is noble (if flawed), as is the ambroxan stirred in with a small petrol leather note to distract from the apparent lack of oakmoss. In reality, the vetiver here rings truest, but more on that later. The opening meets the bergamot with a grapefruit softened by cardamom, recalling Kenneth Cole Signature (2005) just a pinch, until the faux-champagne note makes me feel like I'm spritzed in cheap Barefoot Bubbly. The awkward phase of the geranium and rosemary middle interacting with the champagne note does briefly remind me of orange children's chewable Tylenol, but the base rectifies that in about 5 minutes, so the first 10 minutes are bright, the next 5 are awkwardly chalky, then the rest of the wear is enjoyable. The vetiver and labadanum really save the day for Oscar de la Renta Gentleman, coming across as more pleasant and cost-effective Vetiver Extraordinaire (2002) that actually doesn't pretend vetiver is the star of the show when it's not, plus won't break the bank in the process. Instead, that slightly smokey green note teams up with pasty labadanum to mix with the warm ambroxan and sharp norlimbanol, making you almost forget either are there at all. The composite dry and slightly fresh warmth this creates are complimented by the relatively small leather and cedar notes well enough, making a respectable, although not particularly impressive modern chypre accord. As a skin scent, Oscar de la Renta Gentleman continues on for a solid 8 hours, although projection isn't phenomenal outside of fabric, which is keeping true to the mid-century male chypre tradition of modest sillage, I suppose. Also of note, if you don't want that brief chalkiness to sustain, avoid spraying on your shirt (although a little rubbing onto it is fine).

Oscar de la Renta Gentleman feels to me like the house was waxing nostalgic in honor of the late designer who founded it, and although he probably wouldn't have agreed with this composition (from an unlisted perfumer I might add), since he was still wearing the original Oscar de la Renta Pour Lui up until his death, this scent does offer something of a romanticized look at what an Oscar de la Renta scent for guys might have been like if released in the 50's or 60's, just obviously not with the aromachems or synthetic "champagne" note, which are all decidedly by-products of modern designer thinking. Oscar de la Renta Gentleman is a decent enough fragrance to get a thumbs up, and likely meant to compete with Bleu de Chanel (2010), Prada Luna Rossa (2012) and Dior Sauvage (2015) when released by adding a more traditionally-minded option to this new wave, but falls short of greatness because it's just too "classic" in design as a modern fragrance to truly become a classic in it's own right, much like the modern New Beetle, Fiat 500, and Mini Cooper cars that zip around city streets as throughly modern creations constrained by "vintage" aesthetics, creating cognitive dissonance upon observation of them that leaves one feeling wanting of the genuine article by fans, or turned off by the dated appearance for everyone else. Best used as a daytime work or casual summer evening fragrance, Oscar de la Renta is too dry for romance and too pale for cold weather, but a nice daily driver for fans of citric vetiver with a dash of leather, which is a rarely seen combination outside of the mucho expensivo niche realms anymore. Worst case scenario, people will always strike up a conversation when you show them the bottle, which is always fun! Rest in peace Oscar.

I like this fragrance. Certainly classy...would go very well with a tuxedo or a suit. The prominent note in Gentleman is amber (kind of get a slight Armani Mania/Nicolaï New-York vibe). Amber fresh. A little dusty throughout which emits from the leather/wood base. The grapefruit, champagne and tea notes can be detected above the amber. The fragrance does mirror the traditional casino scene; an aged room with table games, men in tailor-made suits, leather seats, glasses of champagne, wood panelling and silver pots of Chinese tea. A very well done EDT which comes in a riveting and quirky domino bottle.

Gentleman sits squarely between Oscar de la Renta Pour Lui (1981)--said to be his personal signature scent--and Oscar for Men (2000). Pour Lui is an exceptional powerhouse fragrance, a leathery chypre that was perfectly in line with the time of its launch. Oscar for Men, which is a citrusy fragrance, with dry woods and spices was also perfectly in sync with its time. Its opening of bergamot and grapefruit recall the citrus notes of Oscar for Men while its base of amber and “rich labdanum-infused Leatherwood” reminds us of the dark power of Pour Lui. Like its two brothers, Gentleman is also perfectly in tune with the times–its citrus/spice/wood construct is at the background of many modern masculine launches today. The heart notes contain rosemary, geranium and black tea notes and remind some of Gucci Pour Homme I & II. What strikes me most about this scent is how well blended and harmonious this scent is–all of the notes sing together in one chorus and create a year round scent. The citrus lightens it enough for wear in the warmth and the woods and amber in the dry down give it the oomph to stand up to cooler weather. For a designer scent, the quality of the ingredients comes through strongly, whether real or perceived. Quite simply, Gentleman is a beautifully done modern man's fragrance that truly is as gentlemanly as Sr. de la Renta.

The bottle for Gentleman, which is a huge domino is either a stroke of genius or an act of kitsch. Love it or hate it, you will remember it! Personally, seeing the big, outsized domino tile makes me smile–and reach for the scent to wear.

Very well blended and perfect launch time as this is more of a fall fragrance.

The drydown is all Gucci PH I which is a total delight. Does not beat up your nostrils like the Gucci does.

The opening is a cleaner Terre d'Hermes but sweeter and more blue, so closer to Narciso Rodriguez's Bleu Noir.

There is a little bit of Tom Ford's Bois Maroccan in the character as well, that arid unrelenting note, yet it is balanced by a sweetness that is restrained.

There is a 'saliva' note a la Oscar Pour Lui that only shows up on skin.

Overall, a solid performer that is heads and shoulders above the standard these days for designer fragrances.

You don't want to miss this one.

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