- Apr 3, 2020
My Fragrancebuy.ca order has arrived and both these are stunning! The Chopard really, really surprised me as I wasn't sure what to expect other than the notes call to mind Mexican hot chocolate (and there is a cacao note in there with peppers.) Interestingly, my order from another Canadian outfit, nichessence.com, shipped about the same time and they're both located in/around the Toronto metro area. Fragrancebuy drops their shipments off in Buffalo while NicheEssence is coming via FedEx international and took the route through Michigan. Both were to be delivered today, on a Saturday, but I'm not holding my breath for the Naxos in the other shipment as that was still in Michigan, albeit only 3+ hrs away, as of this morning. Just interesting they took different routes.
As for Dolce & Gabbana Velvet Amber Sun: Yes, this does smell quite a bit like Tom Ford's Amber Absolute. That I got it for $80 and change makes me feel like I committed a felony. Sure, there are some differences, but overall, from my recollection, it's quite similar without some of the dirtier aspects of Amber Absolute.
Update: Several hours later (5.5 - 6) this is still going strong. Definitely get the vanilla in the base with amber and still feel like this is Amber Absolute's lost cousin. I can tell this one is going to be on my skin for quite some time.
Chopard Or de Calambac has top notes are Star Anise and Pink Pepper; middle notes are Hazelnut, Cacao, Juniper, Tonka Bean and Cinnamon; base notes are Laotian Oud, Myrhh, Vetiver, Agarwood (Oud), Cypress, Guaiac Wood and Labdanum. This opened up very green to me and reminiscent of something else with "green pepper" note I've smelled before. I was expecting something heavier, denser, perhaps thicker - but this was kind of "bright" in its own unexpected way and very, very classy. It's already evolving on my skin, but gosh - I'm REALLY liking this. What a way to start out the new year.
Update: This is really a surprise. So, this entire Gardens of Kings line is eco-friendly and apparently made from all naturals. Though they credit the Oud as being trademarked with "Oud Assafi," it's apparently done so for the processing purposes of Oud Assam which is "recognized as the most precious Oud in the world." Whether that's for marketing purposes or the truth, I dunno. What's surprising to me is there's a stage of development where I could swear I smell something like ambroxan - well done, like in a few other high-end perfumes I've smelled, yet there's the testament to all natural ingredients being used. Quite the parlor trick.
As this settles and into several hours later, the notes are all very well blended together that nothing in particular stands out - though there is the semblance of each floating about (cocoa, hazelnut, a touch of cinnamon, etc.). It's just a smooth scent. Very well done by Albert Morillas.
2nd Update: I read through the booklet included and saw there were some notes listed that aren't on the internet, one being red pepper. I suddenly realized where the opening I thought reminded me of something else came from: L'Artisan Piment Brulant opens with chili pepper and has that same accord as here, plus it shares similar notes of cacao and cinnamon - but the two fragrances don't smell much alike after that.
I also have a sample of Amouage's Interlude 53 arriving today. If the other shipment makes it, that will also include three samples of things I haven't tried yet, either, so it's going to be a very smelly weekend.
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Roja Parfums Aoud
Excellent as always from Roja. Clean and austere with a velvety smooth feel. Very similar to MFK Oud Satin Mood Extrait (which I already own) but the Roja creation is much more smooth and clean. Honestly, if I had discovered this before Oud Satin Mood, I would have easily chosen this. As it stands however, I already own the MFK and there are too many similarities to own both, IMO.
Just a couple of quick impressions, cause I love it when packages are delivered first thing in the morning!
Xerjoff Naxos - Glad I got a full bottle. I have owned Havana for a while, but I've never been a huge fan of Mugler's typical dry-down. This is similar, yet a classier version as many have noted before.
Xerjoff More Than Words - I like this! Jammy fruit over oud. It reminds me of something else I can't put my finger on, but this is right up my alley!
Naxos is just better overall, the drydown is killer.
As far as More Than Words, you may be thinking of Armani's Rose d'Arabie.