Tuesday, November 07, 2006

And in this corner...

On my left, in white and black, Diptyque's Tam Dao. And on my right, the challenger, in black and burgundy, The Art of Shaving's Sandalwood.

Tam Dao: (2003) Goan Sandalwood, cypress, myrtle, cedar, rosewood, ambergris, vanilla, musk. This one comes out swinging early with heavy cedar, extremely nutty in the L'Artisan Bois Farine style, and a sharp, almost fuel-like haze of something which may be an unusually biting cypress, and then again, maybe not. Like many out of the Diptyque outfit - and in particular, one of my other favourites, Virgilio - Tam Dao is a clean fighter, a technician, with light but precise footwork and no wasted energy in the middle rounds. As it loosens up, this one is very, very smooth, and finally does what a sandalwood is expected to do: warm, comfort and ground. There is a praise-worthy restraint to its back-to-basics simplicity. Tam Dao does not have particularly good reach, but it does have legs enough for a well-executed, floury drydown.

The Art of Shaving Sandalwood: (2004) Mysore Sandalwood, eucalyptus, jasmine, fir needle, myrrh, patchouli and vanilla. A very fresh opening approach, with eucalyptus and pine combinations - this one dominates the beginning of the match. The mentholated and peppery bite of the initial blast blends surprisingly well with some more conventional, but effective, core sandalwood work. Now the fighters are looking quite alike and they're getting tangled up in one another - some very smooth, resinous and musty-sweet work here from both, although The Art of Shaving still looks a little cooler. But wait, Sandalwood is flagging some; I think the cool/warm combinations are proving difficult to sustain. The drydown has a pleasant, almost minty tenacity, but there is some wear showing. Still, you have to admire the daring of this one.

And the winner, by split decision, is Tam Dao. (A spring/summer rematch may be in order, folks.)


At 6:20 a.m., Blogger chaya ruchama said...

Dear Erin, Mother of Beauteous Baby Girl-
{You need to appreciate that I've got sons, and suffer from terminal daughter lust !]

I'm w/ you on this-
However, if you're you're hankerin' for a skank, TD layered with L'Autre really fits the bill-
I just don't knoe how safe it would be to hang out w/ South Indian males- you might be devoured...

[Oh, oh, me first !]

At 7:55 a.m., Blogger chaya ruchama said...

Dear Erin-
I am so dim !
Also born in the year of the Horse, with rising and Venus in Taurus [alas ,12th house there- not the easiest of paths...]
Just checked your profile and thought I'd comment...
BTW- who is Dutch?
You, or the DH?
[I spent a great deal of time in the Netherlands, and almost became Vrouw Ida de Jong !]

At 11:09 a.m., Blogger Erin said...

I will have to try with L'Autre. South Indian males are among my favourites (hey Mo!) - but so, of course, are the Dutch (my husband is Dutch...) I don't know much about astrology, except that my horoscope seems to really fit me (though not my mother, and we have the same birthday). I thought my daughter was going to be a son - I would have loved a little boy, as well, of course, but it is fun to have a shopping buddy!


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