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Note Series #20 – SANDALWOOD - June 8, 2016

Santalum album flowers in Hyderabad, India - Wikipedia

Sandalwood is another classic perfume note, used as a key ingredient in the base of nearly all fragrance categories from Orientals through to aromatics. Used for millennia by many cultures, sandalwood oil is derived from the wood of the genus santalum, a small slow-growing evergreen found in India, the West Indies and Australia, which has a sweet woody scent that is soft, warm, and very smooth with a unique creamy lingering richness that pulls other notes into its sphere, making sandalwood an excellent fixative.

Oil from Indian Mysore sandalwood is recognized as the best quality but is the most expensive and the hardest to source, due to the fact that the tree is now a protected species, so Australian sandalwood oil which has a less refined, more resinous and greener profile is now the sandalwood used in most fragrances. Regardless of the source, sandalwood is a strikingly beautiful and distinctive fragrance note. (Source: Wikipedia and Fragrantica)

 

Note Series #20 – SANDALWOOD      4 1ml. decants for $15.00, regular $19.00

10 Corso Como by 10 Corso Como – floral and woody and gorgeously Italian

10 Corso Como opens with a note of rose along with geranium, it’s rosy facet bolstering the rose at the start. The florals linger before resting on a soft, woody aromatic sandalwood that is just sublime. Body heat makes it bloom and reveals a resinous, seductive dark heart of oud with the rose and the sandalwood still present in the background. Vetiver, musty and dry, adds another layer of woodiness and a slight smokiness. It smells gorgeously Italian.

Santal de Mysore by Serge Lutens – buttery and smoky and exotic

In his uniquely inventive style, Serge Lutens uses Mysore sandalwood to tell this sandalwood story. It starts with a twist, a full Mysore feast, a spicy Indian sandalwood buffet of savoury, sweet, and sweaty, suffused with buttery smoky deliciousness, a spiced curry, slightly sweetened with burnt caramel but which feels light, and floating on coconut rice. The spice accord is softened by soft indolic florals, which come and go, with hints of anise. And then the sandalwood arrives…creamy, silky, warm, rich and deep with a hint of leathery balsam that keeps the sweetness in check, but absolutely a sandalwood like I’ve never smelled before. A marvelous sandalwood dry-down with an exotic lingering finish, Indian sandalwood wrapped in the smell of India.

Santal Majuscule by Serge Lutens – woody and rich and warm

This beauty is based on Australian sandalwood and it’s right at the top paired with Damask rose. As body heat warms up the fragrance, it gets more complex – the sandalwood develops a sweet, sweaty, animalic woodiness, while the lush, creamy rose has a soft fruity, apricot facet. In the Middle East, Damask rose is used to flavour desserts like Turkish delight, rice pudding and ice cream, and it offers some of that sweetness here, giving Santal Majuscule a delicious gourmand aspect while keeping it way south of sweet-tooth territory. Then, a note of cocoa gives it a rich, deep, dark smoothness. Santal Majuscule is the smell of ecstasy.

Sandalwood by George F. Trumper – aromatic and rich and velvety

Trumper is known for quality, and quality shines through in their Sandalwood cologne, which they claim contains Mysore sandalwood. Although the name infers that this is a one-note samba, this Sandalwood is about so many more notes. The male bits are at the top – citrus, herbs, and spices bright and lemony-citrus fresh, with aromatic lavender to keep the chi flowing. The feminine bits arrive, jasmine and carnation mix with sweet red rose, leading the scent into a place of lustrous depth.  And then the sandalwood floats by, definitely smooth and velvety and creamy, like the waft of sandalwood dust from the finest sandpaper smoothing the wood to a satin finish. Into the dry-down, the sandalwood note wraps around the curvy floral heart, layered on top of a soft accord of patchouli, amber and vanilla, with hints of velvety sueded leather. A perfectly seamless blend of herbs, resins, florals, and sandalwood ….mmm. Just for men? I don't think so.

Notes Series #20 – SANDALWOOD is listed in our Decant Store. 4 1ml. decants for $15.00, regular $19.00.