I’ve read some very positive reports about the fragrances from artisan perfume house Sammarco.
The Switzerland-based perfumer, Giovanni Sammarco, uses a high percentage of natural raw materials in his fragrances which are pure parfum strength. The collection currently numbers four: Alter, Vitrum and Bond-T which were launched in 2012 and Ariel which was released last year.
Notes: Jasmine Sambac, rose, frankincense, mimosa, animal accord, incense and opoponax.
Alter is one of those head-swimming white florals which is heavy on indolic jasmine and overlaid with a gauze of civet-like musk. It’s the kind of perfume that would make a gentlewoman come over all unnecessary with just one sniff.
I have a low tolerance for the type of musk used here but Alter is lush, billowy and seductive. If you love heady white florals with a soupçon of sex, it’s more than likely to make you swoon.
Notes: Vetiver, rose, bergamot, black pepper, incense and oakmoss.
This is a very clever composition, not least because it is a vetiver I can appreciate. To my nose, most have an odour of stagnant swamp water which turns my stomach.
Vitrum is a softly spoken vetiver, reduced down to its smoky soul. Augmenting it with rose is a lovely touch.
For once, this is a vetiver fragrance which embodies both strength and beauty. I’m not surprised when I read it was created as a bespoke fragrance for a female journalist. Vitrum is a refreshing detour from the well trodden vetiver path.
Notes: Cocoa, patchouli, osmanthus, castoreum, tonka and vanilla.
Bond-T was inspired by a visit to a chocolate factory in Pisa, it oozes thick dark chocolate with a high cocoa content; dry and slightly powdery. Patchouli’s chocolate facet makes it a natural partner for cocoa, but I’m very pleased to find the patch here doesn’t overwhelm it.
Bond-T is a chocolate perfume accentuated by patchouli, not a patchouli perfume accentuated by chocolate. The base features a sweet, honeyed amber which takes the decadence to another level.
I find something very chic about dark chocolate fragrances . To be chic, you have to have a little quirkiness thrown in with your elegance and that’s Bond-T to a, er, T.
Notes: Mandarin, ginger, angelica, tuberose, jasmine, osmanthus, violet, rose, sandalwood, tobacco, davana and orris concrete.
You can tell an awful lot of time and thought went into the creation of Ariel. Going by the website, it seems to have been a labour of love for Giovanni: an homage to the flame-haired object of his affection. It’s the most complex and captivating scent in the collection.
Ariel contrasts sweet, cosmetic powdered florals against crisp, bright greens. The overall effect is sophisticated and retro, yet metallic and musky accents in the early stages give it a contemporary twist. The drydown is nothing short of gorgeous.
Ariel is an idealised image of female beauty and feminine attributes. A woman seen through the eyes of love.
Do any of the four Sammarco fragrances call to you?