David Jourquin is a niche, French line of perfumes that specializes in leather fragrances. Cuir Altesee is a self-described “evening fragrance”. It’s actually the only perfume (so far) that I’ve tried from the line.
Cuir Altesee has an opening that is dense but luminescent. It’s like peaches, orange, spices and tons of patchouli. It’s like cinnamon and bourbon. It’s bitter, bold and somehow bright. To my surprise, there is a rich “cigar accord” in Cuir Altesee. I say I’m surprised because it’s not listed in the notes; yet, it seems like it is so prominent. The tobacco is bitter and boozy, like it has been doused with whiskey. With all of this, I think of Cuir Altesee like a cabaret. It’s booze, cigar and fancy French perfumes. There’s furs that were scented with patchouli sachets, cigarettes stained by ruby red lips. The heart is slightly smokier, like a haze of tobacco and incense. It also introduces an indolic jasmine and dry chypre/oakmoss that wears like traces of someone else’s perfume on your skin. The base is sweet. It has that sharp patchouli but it’s not as noticeable as the vanilla, balsamic tonka and more boozy vanilla. Underneath the tonka/vanilla, there’s a soft leather, like a pair of gloves or an old clutch. But, it’s definitely more patchouli and vanilla than it is leather.
After wearing Cuir Altesee a few times, I’ve been reminded that I love patchouli perfumes so much and don’t wear them enough. Patchouli has been an old love for me, one of the first notes that got me interested in perfume. I guess I burnt myself out but geez, stuff like this reminds me that I love it. “Femme fatale” really sparked my love with niche perfumes. When did I stop wearing perfumes that smell like I’d betray my lover in an instant?
Notes listed include orange, pink pepper, cardamom, rose petals, jasmine, cumin, cloves, leather, vanilla, coumarin, oak moss and benzoin. Launched in 2014. PERFUMER – Cecile Zarokian
Give Cuir Altesse a try if you like boozy, tobacco scents or if you like sweeter patchouli perfumes. Or perfumes like Serge Lutens Chergui, Serge Lutens Borneo 1834, Naomi Goodsir Cuir Velours, Mona di Orio Vanille, By Kilian Light My Fire and/or Dior Patchouli Impérial. And possibly even Mugler Angel. Cuir Altesse is marketed like a women’s evening fragrance, but this is totally unisex. In fact, someone else would probably market it like a masculine fragrance.
Projection and longevity are above average.
The 3.4 oz bottle retails for $265 at at Luckyscent. Samples are also available for purchase.
Victoria’s Final EauPINION – Cigars, bourbon and patchouli. Wear it when going out. Wear it when you want to feel like you’re going out. Wear it when you feel like hiring a private investigator. Wear it when you wish opera gloves were still in style. Wear it when you want to be D-R-A-M-A.
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