There are few stories in independent perfumery as successful as that of Victor Wong. Mr. Wong went from being part of the gigantic group of people who talk about making perfume on Facebook to actually doing it. Even more remarkable is his business plan of asking some of the best independent artisan perfumers to design something for his Zoologist brand. He has acted as a creative director allowing the perfumers to create something he would like to smell. Mr. Wong has taken the way he wanted independent perfume to be and brought it to life. A little over four years ago he released his first perfume. At the beginning of his fifth year comes Zoologist Dodo.
Following up last year’s Tyrannosaurus Rex it seems like Mr. Wong is working on the extinct side of the animal kingdom. For Dodo he collaborated with perfumer Joseph DeLapp. Mr. DeLapp has his own artisanal line of attars he distills himself called Rising Phoenix. According to his interview on the Zoologist website Mr. DeLapp only rarely works in alcohol based Eau de Parfum. He has a line ready to go but it seems like Dodo will be his first. He also mentioned in the same interview that he wanted to make an EdP which was as dense as an attar. He doesn’t quite manage that. What he does achieve is something more open and appealing.
Mr. Wong wanted a fougere as part of his line. Mr. DeLapp had been working on a fougere as part of his own brand. They met in the middle in producing Dodo. This is a fougere which only comes from this kind of creative genetics.
Dodo opens in a tropical jungle redolent of green foliage and exotic fruits of lychee, lime, and raspberry. Mr. DeLapp deftly chaperones the three fruity ingredients allowing them to create a humid tropical jungle accord. This transitions into a floral heart accord of rose over ambergris and fir. The fir deepens the foliage effect from the top accord into something more pine-like. This s where Dodo becomes most like an attar. Rose is a classic attar ingredient and the one used here has all the rich quality of an attar rose. Mr. DeLapp uses the ambergris as the supporting ingredient to lift that rose up. The base accord continues the slowly intensifying green with oakmoss anchoring it with its noir-ish quality. Mr. DeLapp threads through a lightly animalic musk, patchouli, and amber to complete the tropical jungle milieu.
Dodo has 12-14 hour longevity and average sillage.
One of the things I have admired about Mr. Wong is he has often brought out the best work of the perfumers he has worked with. Dodo is another case of this. I like this better than any of the attars I’ve tried from Rising Phoenix; and those are very good. I am now very much hoping Mr. DeLapp finds a way to produce his own line of Eau de Parfums. Dodo is another success of Mr. Wong’s extinction protocol for perfume.
Disclosure: This review was based on a sample provided by Zoologist.