Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Fall Ball Is Fast Approaching!

I will not be able to make it this year per strict doctor's orders for no airline travel. Plus, the walking and standing would do me and my feet in by about 10am! However, I will terribly miss the festivities and be thinking of you all this weekend. If you are anything like me, just reading the following creates endorphins in your body. If anyone is willing to pick up a bottle of Bond No. 9 Bryant Park for me, please e-mail me at your convenience! Here is a copy of the e-mail I received Saturday from the amazing Team Karen:

Dear Fragrance Friends:

In just one short week, fragrance lovers from around the globe will be gathering in NYC for the most spectacular fragrance event of the season, the ultra-fabulous Sniffapalooza Fall Ball!

Demand for tickets to this Fall Ball weekend has been so overwhelming, that we regret to tell you that we have only a few precious spaces remaining... and you know how we hate to disappoint anyone. So we urge you to let us know right away if you would like to join your fellow fragrance-lovers for our biggest & best Sniffapalooza yet!

For those of you who are just joining the Sniffapalooza family, the Sniffapalooza Fall Ball is an entire weekend crammed full of olfactory and multi-sensory experiences. You'll come away from the weekend with new knowledge, new friends, lots of new goodies, and a new perspective on a fragrant life. There's nothing else like it on the planet.

This year's event will be Saturday, October 25 - Sunday, October 26. As always, Saturday will be our 'uptown' day, and Sunday will be our 'downtown' day. Here's our itinerary below, with lots of surprises in the works, and many details will be added right up to the last fragrant moment!

Perfumers, guest speakers & presenters you'll meet during the weekend:

Kilian Hennessy of By Kilian; Joe Garces of Robert Piguet; Tom Crutchfield of Asprey, Annick Goutal, Etro, & Judith Leiber; Dovanna Pagowski & Chely De Pablos of Acqua di Parma; Shelley Levendos of Donna Karan Collection; Maree Damm of Boucheron; Sandi Burrows of Serge Lutens; Brian Kurtz of L'Artisan Parfumeur; Mary Claire Pedone of Jo Malone; Theresa Dickinson of Creed; John Bain of Van Cleef & Arpel; Geri Verlaque of Chanel; Katy Jourav of Tom Ford; Sonia Ciliberti & Jason Beers of Guerlain; Montgomery Taylor of Ambre de Venezia; Ulrich Lang of Parfums Ulrich Lang; Neil Morris of Neil Morris Fragrances; Sarah Barton-King of The Pink Room; Patty Namm of Brandy Perfume; Janna Sheehan of Trance Essence; Lee Cuthbert of Intelli-Scents; Avery Gilbert, author of 'What the Nose Knows'; Adelaide Farah of Beauty Fashion Magazine; Phoebe Ellis, Natasha Cote, & Irina Burlakova of Seven Skies Perfume; perfumer Roxana Villa; Christopher Voigt of; Raphaella Brescia of Sniffapalooza Magazine; Salomeh Daley from Memoire Liquide; Cathy Gins of Aromawear; Laetitia Longuefosse of Cinquieme Sens; Rainer of Linari; perfumer Gerald Dubose; Pedro de Leana; perfume designer Linda Gerlach; Sabine Hernandez of Amouage; Olyesa Inaovitch of Bill Blass Fragrances; Alex Mehfar of Le Cherche Midi; Jessica Dunne of Ellie D; and Miriam Mirani from Aqaba.


8:15-10:00am The famous Breakfast with *14 speakers and presentations* at Bergdorf Goodman ****PLEASE NOTE: Breakfast limited to the first 65 guests to sign up & is SOLD OUT.The other guests will arrive at 10am & meet all the breakfast speakers & get the stuffed-to-the-brim gift bag!

10:00am-12:00pm Sniffing time on the beauty floor at BG, meet special guests & presenters from the breakfast, exclusive offers, makeup artists, that incredible raffle & those legendary gift bags.

NEW LAUNCHES & MUST SNIFFS: By Kilian Prelude to Love & Sophie Matisse bottles, Tom Ford White Patchouli, Tom Ford Private Blend, Creed Love in Black, L'Artisan Fleur de Liane, Jo Malone Sweet Lime & Cedar, Annick Goutal Les Orientalistes, Judith Leiber Parfum, Donna Karan Collection, Acqua di Parma Profumo, Guerlain Les Charnals, Chanel Eau Premiere, Chanel Les Exclusifs, Van Cleef Feerie, Serge Lutens Serge Noire & Santal de Mysore, B Boucheron, Ajne, Ineke, Estee Lauder Private Collection Amber Ylang Ylang, JAR, Le Cherche Midi, Clive Christian, Prada, Apothia, Caron, Mona di Orio, 10 Corso Como, Antica Farmacista.

12:30-2:30pm Prix Fixe lunch at Opia restaurant - *13 special speakers*, party favors, fragrance games, Sniffapalooza Magazine raffle, Beauty Fashion Magazine promotion, unbelievable gift bags! (Registration required)

2:45-4:15pm Sniffing & dessert at Takashimaya, with special guests, presentations, terrific promotions, those amazing cupcakes and mango tea, and goodies to take home.

PERK: 10% off all fragrance purchases!NEW LAUNCHES & MUST SNIFFS: Neil Morris for Takashimaya, YOSH Olfactory Sense, The Pink Room, Histoire des Parfums, Le Cherche Midi, Septimanie, Keiko Mecheri, Miller et Bertot Shanti Shanti, Summersent, E.Coudray, Pedro de Leana Sensaciones Collection, Fragonard, Detaille 1905, Acqua di Biella, Divine, The Different Company.4:15-5:45pm Sniffing at Henri Bendel, with special guests, the exclusive fantastic Sniffapalooza GWP, refreshments, and gifts.PERK: 10% off all purchases when opening HB charge

NEW LAUNCHES & MUST SNIFFS: Etat Libre d'Orange Bendelirious, Salvador Dali line, L'Artisan Eau de Liane, Aftelier, Privet Bloom, Caron, Maitre Parfumeur et Gantier, Apothia, Isabella Capeto, Teo Cabanel, Ellie D, Juliette Has a Gun Citizen Queen, Kai, Child, Annick Goutal Les Orientalistes, Memoire Liquide, Aqaba.

6:00-8:00pm Cocktails & refreshments for the 60th anniversary party for Fracas at Spafumerie!

For this event only, original Robert Piguet dresses will be on view, flown in for Sniffapalooza from Paris. Also, several niche fragrance lines that we saw in Italy will be brought in for this event!

PERK: 10% discount on all purchases! Manicure gift certificate with $200 purchase! Facial gift certificate with $250 purchase!

EXTRA SPECIAL: Fracas 60th Anniversary Limited Edition Coffret, special price for Sniffapalooza!

NEW LAUNCHES & MUST SNIFFS: Bois 1920, Isabey Gardenia, Tarantella, Costume National, Laura Tonnato, full Robert Piguet line, Juliette Has a Gun


10:00-11:30am The famous Brunch & Sniffing at Bond No. 9! Meet Bond No. 9 fragrance specialists, sample new Andy Warhol Lexington Avenue, and fantastic gift bags.

PERK: 15% discount on all purchases.

MUST SEE: The Robert Lee Morris Andy Warhol jewelry collection.

MUST SNIFF: Andy Warhol Silver Factory, Union Square, Lexington Avenue and dazzling Bond No. 9 holiday gift sets!

11:00am-5:00pm Open House sniffing at Le Labo. Meet founders Eddie & Fabrice & specialist Bo Jade & have your purchases custom-labelled!

MUST SNIFF: Exclusive New York scent - Tubereuse 40, and scented notepads in cult-scent Santal 26!

12:00-1:00pm Sniffing at Lafco NY, with sampling, refreshments, special gifts. Meet Creative Team Jon Bresler & Segen Scott. PERK: 20% discount on all purchases.

NEW LAUNCHES & MUST SNIFFS: Linari new fragrance line created by perfumer Mark Buxton - meet Rainer, the President of Linari! Eau d'Italie Baume du Doge, most comprehensive selection of Santa Maria Novella products in the US, Lorenzo Villoresi, Claus Porto.

1:00-4:00pm Prix Fixe lunch at Country Cafe, with *6* speakers, party favors, and the incredible Sniffapalooza Magazine raffle!

Two seatings for lunch:

First seating: 1:00-2:30pm
Second seating: 2:30-4:00pm

While the first group is dining, the second seating group will visit L'Artisan Parfumeur right across the street for sampling & treats & an introduction to the new Fleur de Liane. (This L'Artisan location has the most comprehensive selection of L'Artisan products in the city!) Likewise, for the second seating group.

** Please note that those choosing the second seating will have more time at Bond No.9, Le Labo, and Lafco NY. If you need to catch a flight or make a train, you should choose the first seating. First seating diners must be seated promptly by 1:00pm.

**Sunday Lunch Seating is Extremely Limited

4:30-6:00pm Prosecco Bellinis & sniffing at Aedes de Venustas. Samples, special guests, exclusive launches & gift bags. Meet creative team Robert & Karl.

MUST SNIFF: Lalique Amethyst, By Kilian Prelude to Love, Amouage Lyric Man & Lyric Woman, Annick Goutal Les Orientalistes, Aedes de Venustas EdP by L'Artisan Parfumeur, Brandy, Andy Tauer Vetiver Dance, Serge Lutens Serge Noire, Escentric Molecules, 3 new Diptyque candles & new Diptyque bath & body line, Lubin Nuit de Longchamp, Lubin L de Lubin, Carthusia, Heeley, Penhaligons Elixir, Parfums D'Empire, Molinard, Anvers & Anvers 2, Maitre Parfumeur et Gantier, Miller et Bertot,Creed Love in Black.

The rates for Sniffapalooza Fall Ball 2008 are as follows:

Saturday, 10/25: $70 covers event & lunch Sunday, 10/26: $70 covers event, brunch & lunch Full weekend: $140 covers events 10/25 & 10/26, lunches both days, the brunch on Sunday, and the BG breakfast (only if you were one of the first 65 people to sign up).

A portion of each registration fee will be donated to a very special charity for Multiple Sclerosis.

You can register at via PayPal. You will need to log in with your Username and Password to access the “Event Registration” page. If you have questions or need to make other payment arrangements, please contact Karen Adams at

If you are visiting NYC from out-of-town, there are some incredible last-minute deals to be had on airfare and hotels!!! Please visit,,, &, etc. - and you'll see what we mean!

While you're counting the days to Sniffapalooza Fall Ball, please check out our award-winning on-line fragrance magazine, SNIFFAPALOOZA MAGAZINE, at Subscriptions are free!!! The current two issues are a tribute to Fall Ball and you can get a preview of all the new launches and what you'll experience next weekend!

If you've attended a Sniffapalooza before, you know what an incredible experience awaits you...If you haven't, you're in for the time of your life!

**Team Karen cannot be responsible for any addictions to Sniffapalooza, or withdrawal symptoms that may result after the event is over. If such symptoms occur, please go immediately to the nearest fragrance counter.

We can't wait to see all our old friends again and meet our new ones! And remember, *accept no imitations* - this is the ONE and ONLY *SNIFFAPALOOZA*!

Viva La Sniffa, Baby!

Karen Dubin, Founder & Director
Karen Adams, Executive Operations Manager

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

I've been Tagged!

Like Divina, "I don’t really do tagging games, or I thought I didn’t." But a bout with the flu and consequential boredom leads me to play. Thank you for the diversion from my sick bed ladies! First, the rules:

1. Link to the person who tagged you (The lovely and warm Divina at Fragrance Bouquet and the talented Jenavira at Scent of Abricots).

2. Post the rules on your blog.

3. Write six random things about yourself.

4. Tag six people at the end of your post and link to them.

5. Let each person know they've been tagged and leave a comment on their blog.

6. Let the tagger know when your entry is up.

Six Random Tamara things:

1) I jumped out of an airplane at 14,000 feet. And I have the video to prove it! It is the craziest and most courageous thing I have ever done yet I've never felt more alive!

2) I started playing classical piano when I was nine years old. I was very good and miss it terribly. My favorite composers include Bach, Beethoven and Mozart. Some day I will have a baby grand in my living room and I'll teach my daughter to play.

3) Walking for 20 minutes three times per week and doing prenatal yoga once per week is about all I can muster in terms of exercise these days! My growing little girl accounts for my laziness.

4) I love interior design and secretly wish I had gone to school for it. I study it as a hobby but wish I had more skill!

5) My personal spiritual pursuit for the next 40 days until Thanksgiving is to write down ten things I'm grateful for and why, every day.

6) I can curl my tongue four ways.

Now the people I will tag are: lovely Marina over at Perfume Smellin' Things, witty A. at Style Spy, crafty Gaia at the Non-Blonde, funny and talented Annieytown at Blogdorf Goodman, Victoria at Victoria's Own whom I miss terribly, and the kind-hearted Raphaella at Sniffapalooza Magazine!

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Comme des Garçons Series 4 Anbar

After browsing through my list of perfume reviews written over the last two years, it shocks me that not one scent from this unique line has been included. Therefore, I am proud to introduce Comme des Garçons, a Japanese fashion label founded in 1969 committed to excellence in fragrance. According to Wikipedia, Comme des Garçons released their first fragrance, named after the company, in 1994 and has since been committed to developing fine, unisex scents based upon non-traditional notes.

For this month's Amber devotion, I picked the refreshing Series 4 Anbar. The Series 4: Cologne collection contains three scents, all in cologne form, designed to be splashed and applied liberally while remaining remarkably close to the skin. (Read: the wearer will not overwhelm others but rather draw others closer to take a whiff of light scent.) True to form, these scents play on the skin for a short while. What they are not is a day-to-night fragrance to be applied in the morning with bottom notes lasting until dusk. Therein lies their charm and uniqueness.

I was quite surprised with Anbar at first sniff due to its abundance of citrus. The notes include mandarin, amber, carnation and musk. Had I been aware of its cologne status prior to testing, I would have been more prepared for a clean scent substituting a warm and dirty aroma. This amber lazily mopes in the background, while the mandarin and carnation dance together for most of the scent's development. Slightly sweet, mostly clean and quite manly smelling, Anbar provides a fantastic deviation from the artificial body sprays of the world and is light enough to be applied liberally before heading off to work. How I wish I could carry a bottle of this with me for every man who made me gag during early pregnancy. I would hand it off politely and say, "Try this instead of showering in whatever you are wearing on your skin." Yes, Series 4 Anbar would have been welcome to grace my nose any day when I was most sensitive. Even today, I find it invigorating and eye-opening.

In conclusion, I am impressed with Comme des Garçons as a house and must try other offerings after discussing their scent philosophy. Although Series 4 Anbar is not for me, at its affordable price point I will be purchasing a bottle for my husband. I am still searching for a bombshell amber to call my own! More on that next week.

The reason we perfumistas love Luckyscent so much is their ability to make obscure fragrances available in the United States. I am happy to say Comme des Garçons Series 4 Anbar is available at Although it is currently backordered, it will be available to ship October 20, 2008. A 125mL splash bottle retails for $52.
Image courtesy of luckyscent.

Friday, October 10, 2008

Fresh Mandarine Amber

Before I begin, I must provide a disclaimer. It has been over six months since I have written an extensive and well researched perfume review and I am quite rusty! As with mastering any skill, consistent practice is essential to creative writing and I am so long out of practice I am embarrassed. So please forgive my awkwardness and brevity in writing. I promise I will smooth out my style as I become re-accustomed to this art form.

I received Fresh Mandarine Amber as part of a sample packet from the Perfumed Court. I have become mesmerized by amber fragrances of late; therefore I ordered a smattering of sophisticated ambers to dazzle my nose as the days in the inferno become cooler (and my growing little girl prepares for her debut!)

Unfortunately, my first pick of the set is impossible to find online. I have had trouble even getting a list of notes! So I will relay as best I can the qualities of this scent. Upon first sniff, I am overwhelmed with what seems like a cardamom-gingery accord. It is nice enough but most certainly reminiscent of a spice rack and it progresses to celery seed as the scent develops. Mandarin, if it is present, is entirely overwhelmed by the spices to which I refer. Any hint of sweetness at the top is very quickly replaced by a a flat, uninspiring and watered-down bouquet. In fact, it reminds me of the herbs I was taking in preparation for pregnancy, as prescribed by my acupuncturist. They smelled okay before mixed with water but were horrid to drink. I braced myself the three times per day I had to ingest them. Mandarine-Amber is not that scowl-inducing but it does remind me of the scent of the herbs.

The last disappointment is the absolute absence of that lovely amber accord I so anxiously await. I am searching for warmth, a little sweetness and lots of sex appeal and I find none. Just. Spice racks. Perhaps this is why the scent is not available to the masses. Maybe like the progression of the fragrance on my skin, its appeal to fragrance mavens just fizzled? It always breaks my heart when I cannot uncover one redeeming quality about a fragrance. But in this case, I cannot. All is not lost, however. There are many other more enigmatic Fresh fragrances to choose from! I may review another one soon. And next week's amber pick will be a bombshell!

As mentioned in my review, I was unable to locate a bottle or price online. If any readers have more information about this fragrance, please fill me in and I will update!

Monday, October 06, 2008

For the Love of Amber

For the next few weeks, I will be reviewing upscale scents that feature an "amber" note. Before I do, however, I would like to briefly discuss the use of this "note" in fragrance. It is a fallacy. Truly. I know. You may be shocked, but extracting the actual scent of the gemstone would be akin to extracting blood from a turnip. Amber in its natural state is simply fossilized deposits of tree resins, much like stones. It is therefore next to impossible to extract any semblance of a scent from these beautiful products of nature. Conversely, amber in scent is a combination of notes that create a golden, honeyed, earthy and warm quality. Together they conspire to create a fragrance that smells like golden amber would smell. The idea is magnificent and I have always found myself drawn to amber fragrances, especially when summer turns to fall and I reach for warmer clothing - clothing that traps and magnifies the warm qualities of an amber fragrance. But alas. These gorgeous fragrances are created with an idea in mind rather than utilizing true amber. (Sorcery of Scent did a terrific job of discussing amber in fragrance this past July!)

I will discuss Fresh Mandarin Amber on Friday.

Thursday, October 02, 2008

New Chanel at Bergdorf Goodman

I received an exciting phone call today about new offerings from Chanel! First, Chanel No. 5 Eau Premiere is now available! It is touted as a "light, softer, fresher" interpretation of No. 5. I adore No. 5 but I know many who cannot wear it. Try the new Eau Premiere which retails at $125 for 5 oz. Also, the Chanel counter is offering a gift set featuring parfum samples of the best selling fragrances, including No. 5, Coco, Coco Mademoiselle and Allure! This set may just be the first item on my 2008 Christmas list. We all know parfums last longer and are more concentrated, so a few applications of each would suit me just fine! For more information, contact Josie at the Chanel counter: 1.888.774.2424.
Update: Eau Premiere made its debut in 2007 so please take that into account when reading this post. Bergdorf Goodman announced it as new, but it is actually one year old. Thanks to Gail for researching the matter!