Monday 3 February 2020

TABAC ROSE by bdk Parfums

You often hear the word “exclusive” applied to perfumes within a company’s range but, more often than not, they tend to be a discontinued fragrance that’s been rereleased under a new name. This is wonderful news for fans of the original but it can smack of a laziness on the part of the company. What is always exciting though is when an “exclusive” is released from a young niche brand because, as they don’t have a huge archive, the fragrance is likely to be a new creation. This is the case with Tabac Rose from bdk Parfums, the Harrods exclusive that has definitely set temperatures racing.

When bdk Parfums launched in 2016, with its quintet of fragrances, it was the culmination of a journey that had seen the founder return to his family roots. David Benedek had grown up surrounded by scent thanks to his grandparents’ career in the perfume industry and, because of the immersion in prestige fragrances, felt like the industry was in his blood. His grandparents had been some of the first individuals to be granted a license to distribute premium scents, from the likes of Les Parfums Worth and Dior, and this was followed by their own boutique in the 1960s on the fashionable rue Saint Honoré in Paris.

David originally studied Economics and Management but, very quickly, the pull of his scented childhood started to draw him into the fragrance industry. He started to train himself in the techniques of the great perfumers, from facets to final creation, and this was the foundation for bdk Parfums. His understanding, and olfactive memory, of the classic scents has meant that his varied collection of eleven scents are perfectly formed thanks to the deep respect that he obviously has for his perfumers. This continues with Tabac Rose and is a great example of a carefully constructed niche fragrance that can also entice a mainstream audience.

David Benedek turned to IFF’s Julien Rasquinet to create the fragrance. With credits ranging from Egalantes to Lancôme, he was the perfect perfumer to combine the niche styling with a touch of populist engagement. In a quirk of fate, Julien Rasquinet had originally been mentored by the world-renowned Pierre Bourdon who, in 2004, was responsible for creating Je Reviens Couture. This was a restored and reworked version of the original Je Reviens from 1932, and it was this original scent that David’s grandparents had distributed under their license for Les Parfums Worth. Tabac Rose continues that desire for floral perfection.

From the very beginning, the perfume declares itself as a celebration of the spicy facet of the Turkish rose. There’s an immediate pull between the resinous labdanum in the base and a violet touched lemon in the head, but the floral sits proudly in the centre. The note of plum that’s listed in the ingredients is definitely present but, alongside a piercing cinnamon and pepper pairing, it contributes to an almost petrolic quality that is addictive. With a rich patchouli giving chocolate nuances to the scent, Tabac Rose is voluptuous yet expansive with a solar brightness that is wonderfully arresting. This is niche perfumery at the top of its game.

Tabac Rose is available exclusively from Harrods instore or online at priced at £195 for 100ml. [Sample provided by bdk Parfums]

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