Best of 2014 + Andy Tauer Sotto La Luna Gardenia

I’m not one to do Best Of lists, although they sure are fun to read. Don’t ask me why, I just never get round to doing so. However, I did say in my article on MiN New York that I’d written a short review of Andy Tauer’s Sotto La Luna Gardenia for Basenotes. You can find it here, along with other my fellow perfume stalwarts: Basenotes Best Fragrance Discoveries of 2014. I have also reproduced my own mini review here:

Andy Tauer’s Sotto La Luna Gardenia was this year’s love-it-or-hate-it fragrance, and it fell resolutely in my ‘OHMYGOODNESS THIS IS MAGICAL I LURRRRVE IT’ category. I had been more than disappointed with this year’s releases, with most of my perfume budget going towards vintage scents. Legend has it that when the full moon hangs high in the sky, the witches come out to play. And Sotto La Luna Gardenia is indeed a witch’s brew that casts its spell upon all who smell it. Forget about a plain, boring soliflore: the gardenia goes into the cauldron, for sure, but along with it go a narcotic jasmine to amp up the sex, a clump of earth to keep it grounded, some cheese to keep it edgy and an overripe banana, which leaves us with a potion that teeters on the verge of decomposition – a quality that made Diorella so compelling to me in the first place. But Tauer doesn’t stop there; he throws tonka bean and vanilla into the mixture, whose gourmand natures leave me wondering if Sotto La Luna Gardenia belongs in the trash or in my mouth. The answer, as with any other perfume that is considered a masterpiece, is that it belongs on every inch of skin that I can spare.

Have a Happy New Year and a great year ahead!

Basenotes Article – Interviewing Mark Buxton (The Fun Edition)


If you haven’t already read my interview with Mark Buxton, do pop on down to Basenotes to read it! You can click here to be directed to it. Also, this wasn’t in the article, but I had a fantastic time hanging out with Sabine who writes over at Iridescentrics. It was especially memorable for me because this was the last opportunity I had to meet up with a dear friend before leaving the UK. We talked about everything and everything, both in Roullier White and over dinner at the Italian restaurant near by, which served quite an excellent pasta.

Let me know what you think of Mark Buxton and his fragrances! Also, should I do more Fun Interviews with perfumers, or stick to the serious stuff?

The Problem with Parfum Prices

Recently, I’ve become rather perplexed at how the various concentrations of a perfume are priced. For many, the extrait (also known as parfum) concentrations of perfumes are often deemed to be the best of all concentrations, because they are plusher, richer and fuller etc. etc. Obviously, this varies depending on one’s personal preferences. But I’m not so much interested in discussing anyone’s preferences regarding concentrations as I am with the pricing strategies of companies with regard to the various perfume concentrations. Continue reading

A Visit to Roullier White and an Interview with Founder Lawrence

© The Smelly Vagabond

I’ve just realised that I’d forgotten to blow my own trumpet and stroke my own ego – I’d forgotten to share with lovely readers of this blog an article I’d written on London perfumery Roullier White, that was published on Basenotes back in December, when I was out camping in the woods somewhere in Micheldever without access to a computer. So, if you’d like, you can read the article by clicking on this link. There, you might find out my true identity (not that it was ever that much of a secret), and even catch a glimpse of my elusive face… Enjoy! 🙂

~ The Smelly Vagabond