There are a number of common experiences I have when people find out I am a perfume blogger. They will tell me what they wear; waiting for a reaction. Most of the time these are department store releases. If there is one thing department store fragrances have done is they have coalesced around a few popular bestselling styles. I usually talk with them about the perfumes which were the originators of whatever they are wearing. If the discussion goes further, I begin to talk about niche and why I think it is usually more interesting. Then when we get down to the cost the spell is usually broken. I have always believed if there was a similarly priced niche alternative there is a real chance to show the difference. Over the last 16 months independent perfumer Andy Tauer is helping me to see if that hypothesis has any weight.
Hr. Tauer has started a spin-off line called Tauerville where he is creating simple releases with a niche sensibility at a price similar to the department store bottles. The first four each highlighted a specific note. With the fifth release Fruitchouli Flash we might have the one which answers the question of why niche is more interesting than mainstream.
If there is any segment of mainstream perfumery which feels played out it is the fruity floral segment. Nevertheless, my desk is already full of boring wannabes for 2016. Even as the fruity floral train started to lose speed someone had the idea of adding in patchouli to give it more weight revitalizing it for cooler weather. Ever quick to jump on a trend there are now dozens of banal fruitchouli releases. Which is where Fruitchouli Flash comes in. The single note Flashes were good but you really need something similar to what they know to get them to try something different. Fruitchouli Flash might just be that perfume.
Hr. Tauer keeps this approachable as he uses peach and apricot as his fruit notes. If you’ve tried peach in a mainstream fragrance in the past few years, you’re probably smelling gamma-decalactone. It has all the subtlety of a fuzzy jackhammer. In Fruitchouli Flash Hr. Tauer uses natural apricot extract to ripen the screechy aromachemical. In many ways this is the soul of independent perfumery on display. Taking the same ubiquitous aromachemical and finding a way to twist it with something new. By using the apricot extract it gives the peach a slightly pungent overripe quality. It is exactly what you can’t find at the mall. The note list names a few florals in the heart; I never noticed them because the patchouli is all that comes next. Again the aesthetic of indie perfumery is here as Hr. Tauer uses an assortment of musks to make the patchouli soft; removing the head shop vibe. This has an earthier feel to it which makes a fragrant still life of a very ripe peach which has fallen off the tree and embedded itself in the moist soil.
Fruitchouli Flash has 18-20 hour longevity and moderate sillage.
I have a very good friend who I have been trying to being over to the world of niche for a long time. Her favorite perfume is a fruitchouli. I can’t wait to show her Fruitchouli Flash. Which is the final point I would like to make about these Tauerville releases. Yes they are simple. They are not as complex as what Hr. Tauer does in his Tauer Perfumes line. I believe this is by design this is not perfume for those of us already converted. It is a perfume to help some of the adventuresome masses to take a look in the back room away from the bright lights of the fragrance counter. With that in mind I think Fruitchouli Flash is what they should find when they take that step.
Disclosure: This review was based on a sample provided by Twisted Lily.