ClaireV's Review of Vanilla Bourbon by Dawn Spencer Hurwitz

Immediately, Vanilla Bourbon is more interesting (to me) than Vanilla Chantilly, due to the fact the vanilla is tainted with faint curlicues of rubber and smoke. Think a bunch of moist vanilla beans sitting downwind of a tire factory. It’s not as dark or as smoky as Vanilla Smoke by Aftelier, but neither is it the plain, white-sugar vanilla of Pink Sugar, Lavanilla, or Candy by Prada.

There’s a clear indie flavor to Vanilla Bourbon that’s hard to define – one of those ‘you’ll know it when you smell it’ deals. This is not a negative, by the way. Sometimes you don’t want the mega-watt complexity or glossy haute couture finish of expensive niche vanillas like Vanille by Mona di Orio and Spiritueuse Double Vanille by Guerlain. Often, you want a dab of something pretty and interesting that you can throw on without thinking about too deeply. If you instinctively lean more towards the indie side of the aisle for your vanilla, and love perfumes like Smoke and Mirrors (Alkemia), Estate Vanilla and Manor (Solstice Scents), then Vanilla Bourbon will surely resonate with you.

I like Vanilla Bourbon a lot. Leaning towards wood and rubber more than straight-up ice cream, it’s more an adult indulgence than childish treat, and that’s my wheelhouse right there. It’s worth mentioning that both Vanilla Smoke by Aftelier and Vanilla Bourbon share a familial relationship with Annick Menardo’s Bvlgari Black. While Vanilla Smoke is Bvlgari Black folded over many times until its density increases four-fold, Vanilla Bourbon is Bvlgari Black put through a color-desaturation filter, washed out until only a sheer gauze of rubber, vanilla, and woods remains.

  1. ClaireV

    Basenotes Plus
    • Messages
    • Articles
    • Article comments
    • Media
    • Albums
    • Reaction score

Recent Reviews by ClaireV

Show more reviews by ClaireV...

Whatever your taste in perfume, we've got you covered...

catalogue your collection, keep track of your perfume wish-list, log your daily fragrance wears, review your latest finds, seek out long-lost scented loves, keep track of the latest perfume news, find your new favourite fragrance, and discuss perfume with like-minded people from all over the world...