Launched in 2001, Ambre 114 is from Histoires de Parfums, the French niche perfume house founded in 2000 by at ISIPCA trained perfumer Gérald Ghislain. The concept behind the name was, according to the HdP website, to present a “Library of scents Spotless crepe paper, titles in color, bottles chiseled in glass: Histoires de Parfums is smartly bound in sixteen volumes to create a unique library.”
Initially, the fragrances in the line were inspired by famous people who influenced the times they lived in – many of them authors - and were named for the years of their birth like 1804 for George Sand and 1740 for the Marquis de Sade – two frags I own and wear often and which helped to make Histoires de Parfums one of my go-to niche lines for great frags.
Over time, the ‘library’ concept was broadened to include places (1889 - Moulin Rouge and Olympia, Music-Hall le Parfum) and themes like the Tubéreuse series and unique, cult perfumes, such as Ambre 114.
So, here’s the 411 on Ambre 114: it opens with a vegetal note of thyme and spicy warm nutmeg that dance close together and then apart creating one of the most exciting openings I know. As it develops, the amber comes forward and it gets more floral from rose and geranium but it gets more exciting from sweet patchouli, sandalwood, camphorous cedar and earthy vetiver. Vanilla, Tonka bean, benzoin and musk at the base make it rich, sweet, resinous and oh-so-perfectly animalic.
Ambre 114 is so constructed in such a way that on me the notes aren’t isolated or in a progression – they appear as flashes creating a smooth, gorgeous olfactory experience.
You’re gonna want to try this one.
Notes: thyme, nutmeg,rose, geranium, patchouli, sandalwood, cedar, vetiver,
amber, vanilla, Tonka bean, benzoin, musk
Parfumers: Gérald Ghislain and Magali Senequier