Blog post by Gwen
“So what have you been up to lately?” asked the guy sitting across the table from me.
I was sitting at a table of guys. We had all gathered at a downtown bar to wish our good friend a happy birthday and raise a glass to him.
It had been a while since this particular group was together in one place, probably the last time was at a Christmas party more than a few years back, and while we got together in various permutations and combinations regularly, I definitely had some catching up to do with a couple of people – especially with the guy across the table.
He had told me his new job, the recent ski trip with friends, his kids, then it was my turn. And, since I had a bottle of just purchased No 01 Le Maroc Pour Elle in my bag, I skipped the day job/vacay/ kids update and got to my real passion: perfume.
“Well, the really exciting news is that I started a blog where I write about perfumes and sell decants, splits and bottles of” I said.
I could hear his eyes glaze over.
Then, my BMF (best male friend - a/k/a the guy I met at university, befriended, and have worked with in the same industry since graduation and who, along with is wife, were our witnesses when my husband and I eloped to NYC to get married), leaned in and said, “No, no, it’s not like that. It’s way cool. She buys hard-to-find artisanal and niche perfumes from all over the place, like Florence, Paris and New York, and writes stories about them and offers decants for sale so people can try them to see if they like them”.
“C’mon, you gotta be kidding!” Mr. Across-the-Table said. “I get sprayed with perfume every time I walk into a department store.”
“Yes, you do.” I said, “But those are often mainstream brands. Nothing wrong with them, but I'm all about the experience of niche perfumes. Fragrances where the perfumer creates an olfactory experience.”
“I’m still not getting it.” he said.
“Look,” I said, “You’re drinking a craft beer, wearing a custom-made shirt and eating locally–sourced artisanal cheese. Niche perfumes are just an olfactory expression and extension of that idea.”
My BMF leaned into me and said, “Too bad you can’t demonstrate”.
“Actually, I can.”
I reached into my bag and pulled out the pentagonal metal box that Tauer perfumes come in. I opened it up took out the bottle and said, “This is No 01 Le Maroc Pour Elle by Andy Tauer. He is a game changer. A Swiss living in Zurich, he is a self taught perfumer. He starting making perfumes in 2004 for a little bookshop in Zurich. Over the years he has gained a reputation for being uncompromising when it comes to ingredients and for having a total commitment to the craft of perfumery. Andy Tauer changed the way I experienced fragrance. Here, show me your wrist.”
Mr. Across-the-Table hesitated long enough for my BMF to say, “No, no go ahead. Let her do her thing, you’ll like it.”
He slowly extended his arm across the table.
“Hey, I’m in for this too.” said my BMF and he put out his arm. I spritzed them both, and myself, with No 01 Le Maroc Pour Elle.
“Now, put your wrist to your nose. What do you smell?” I asked.
“Sparkly citrus, but richer” said Mr. Across-the-Table.
“Wow, you’ve got a nose” I said. “The opening is bitter orange from petitgrain deepened and sweetened with juicy mandarin.”
“Hey, you’re right. I smell it now.” he responded.
“But there’s something else here too.” Said my BMF. “I smell lavender. I recognize it from our garden at home”.
“Ding, ding, ding…we have a winner” I said. “Let’s do some more catching up while the fragrance blooms”.A while later…
“OK” I said, “What do you smell now?”
“Whoa! It smells kinda medicinal and dark” said Mr. Across-the-Table.
“And floral too” said my BMF.
Starter nichers always need a little guidance, so I said, “Well, there’s rose, opulent and rich and lush jasmine at the heart, so there’s your floral, but the medicinal smell is patchouli.”
“It smells dark, resinous, a little sweet and camphourpous.” Said my BMF.
“Let’s take a break and come back to it in a few minutes.” I said.
A little while later….
“What do you smell now?” I asked Mr. Across-the-Table.
“I smell the rose and the patchouli, but it’s smoother than it was before” he said.
BMF cut in with “Yeah, and it’s woody too”.
“That’s cedarwood from the High Atlas mountains of Morocco smoothed with sandalwood.” I said.
“Now, how does it smell?” I asked.
“Rich, exotic, a little dirty, a little sweet, sensuous, erotic…I get it now. You know, I’d love to smell this on my girlfriend.” said Mr. Across-the-Table.
All conversation at the table stopped.
“You have a girlfriend”? asked my BMF.
“On yeah. Didn’t I tell you? You know what would be great? To get some of this No 01 Le Maroc Pour Elle for her and something for me and then….”
“Sniff each other and see what happens” I said.
“Oh, I know what will happen.” he responded. “Just tell me where I can get some decants of great fragrances like this one.”
“Well, you can start right here” I said, taking out my iPad.
Check out No 01 Le Maroc Pour Elle in our Shop.