Scentbird, Inc., New York, NY 10001
Vintage EDT description
The John Varvatos line of perfumes offers a unique vision of what men’s aromatic fragrances can achieve. Each of his fragrances is intricately laced with layers of different notes, and yet they all present the same style. His perfumes smell like they exist in another time, another century. They’re masculine and aromatic, but also rich and deep, with an Old World, timeless elegance.
John Varvatos Vintage takes this Old World feel further than the rest of the line. There are 18 notes in this fragrance in all, and it exhales a bright, rounded spiciness that leans towards rhubarb, cinnamon and patchouli as the main scents.
The opening is a combination of wormwood, basil, rhubarb, quince, fennel, and pepper – so it’s sharply aromatic from black pepper and fennel, but has quinces’ quirky, plum-like appeal also. The abundance of top notes forms kind of a cask-aged, velvety, top-shelf liquor texture to this fragrance, where all the harsh bite of the alcohol has evaporated, but the rustic spice tones from the wood and grain still remain. Vintage isn’t about your usual, “bitter orange and cardamom” starting point; it plunges into deeper Mediterranean water right from the beginning.
The heart features juniper, lavender, cinnamon, jasmine, orris, and a green leaves accord. Of these, the cinnamon and lavender pop the most, with the jasmine smoothing the strong, dry, dominating edge of cinnamon from taking over the middle of the fragrance. The astringency of the juniper blended with the powdery iris also keeps the heart of Vintage from getting too warm from the cinnamon’s natural heat.
The dry down is a blend of tonka bean, tobacco, suede, patchouli, oakmoss, balsam fir, and woods. The tobacco and patchouli lead the way, and balance each other’s spice and dryness. The oakmoss and balsam fir add delicate green nuances behind the patchouli, but don’t overload the base notes with damp mossy tones or too much cool, wintry wood. The focus is always on the richness of the texture, with warm spices coming out on top in each phase of Vintage’s development.
John Varvatos Vintage is a warm and wine-like fragrance, with an interior lushness from its wide array of spices and textures. If you love aromatic fragrances, and want to see how far one line can take this style, John Varvatos is always an excellent choice.