One Thousand Scents

Tuesday, October 04, 2011

More Than Meets The Eye: Odori Tabacco

It is, I suppose, like one of those movies in which a man is searching for the perfect woman and doesn't realize until the last reel that she's been right there in front of him all the time.

Tabacco by Odori is not exceptional at first. The opening has a bit of orange-pop fizz to it and a short-lived gasoliney herbal mélange quickly overwhelmed by the smell of tobacco leaves, which is where it stays until the very end, when a warm vanilla takes over. Nice enough, but not really special, and certainly not worth $200+: in truth, I was beginning to wonder if I had wasted even the $12 I paid for it.

But the more I wore it (and I've worn it a lot in the last few weeks), the more it revealed itself to me. The vanillic bottom is laced with oakmoss, not enough to make it a true tobacco chypre, but enough to give it an earthiness and a dollop of that honey that sometimes accompanies oakmoss. The middle isn't a monolithic block of compressed tobacco leaves: it has nuances, a bit of the fruitiness that you often find in pipe tobacco, the occasional wisp of incense smoke, and a complex interplay of notes that suggests now autumn leaves at the cusp of decomposition, now freshly tilled soil or just-unearthed roots. A woman could of course wear it, but it is instantly recognizable as the smell of masculinity, of a pipe-smoking farmer or a tweed-jacketed gentleman with a humidor on his desk.

The bottle overall looks better than it is. Out of the box, it has a supporting wedge of cardboard jammed between the bottle and its wooden frame, because the bottle doesn't actually fill the frame: it's suspended within it (as you can sort of see in the larger image). The cap is made of leather and is beautiful, and the bottle is heavy, solid glass. But the text is badly, blurrily etched into the glass, and the frame itself, though it looks nice enough, feels kind of cheap and knocked-together: it's so lightweight as to seem hollow when you tap it, and perhaps it is. These little details matter, I'm afraid.

But perhaps you are not overly concerned with trifles such as packaging and concern yourself only with the contents, and you are looking for a truly excellent (if appallingly expensive) tobacco scent, in which case I have saved you the trouble of looking any further. Tabacco is a wonderful thing.


  • Tobacco is a wonderful thing! This sounds lovely. Coincidentally, I am wearing Fumerie Turque today, my favourite tobacco perfume. But I'm always open to another.

    By Blogger Unknown, at 1:45 PM  

  • Fumerie Turque is gorgeous stuff, one of my very favourite Lutenses. (Bafflingly, I seem not to have written about it yet.) Because I seem particularly attuned to Lutens' style, I think FT is the better scent, but it's probably one of those things you can never have too many of.

    Have you tried Versace The Dreamer? Another, very different take on tobacco that you will probably like. (And L'Artisan's L'Eau du Navigateur has a fairly solid dose of tobacco along with all the rest: their Vanille Absolument has some as well, but it kind of gets lost among the sugar.)

    By Blogger pyramus, at 4:09 PM  

Post a Comment

<< Home