Shameful as it is, I do not remember how Montale’s Oud based fragrance line smells like. Not a single one. I’m working my way back in that direction though. Along the way, I’m picking up some others first. Notably, the cleaner, whiter Montale fragrances that catch that part of me that just wants to smell clean and fresh.
In Bottle: Light and green, very pleasant and clean fragrance. Think fresh out of the shower scent with a nice, light, floral mist.
Applied: Beautifully light floral fragrance that’s very quintessentially white and airy. There’s a soapiness to this that opens the fragrance and stays with it as the scent starts to age. The incense used in Chypre Vanille isn’t your typical fair. It’s been cleaned up to the point where it’s hard to recognize as it helps to dry out the vanilla, presenting this concept of vanilla that is unfamiliar but very likable. Chypre Vanille takes the sweetness out of vanilla and makes it sharp and clean, something I wouldn’t expect the note would be capable of. But it wouldn’t be the first or last time I’m wrong. There’s a powderiness to this fragrance too that lingers in the back and reminds you once every so often that it’s still there. The dry down is a nice clean and dry woodsy scent with a very heavy reminder of the vanilla that this was based on. The dry down actually reminds me a little bit of how the classic Guerlains smell.
Extra: Montale is popular for their many different oud-based fragrances that run the gamut of colors, styles and scents.
Design: Bottled in much the same way as other Montale scents, Chypre Vanille is presented in a lovely dark blue bottle with a metal cap and sprayer.
Fragrance Family: Chypre
Notes: Vanilla, rose, amber, incense, sandalwood, iris, vetiver, tonka bean.
An interesting take on what some people cringe to refer to as a “modern chypre”. I don’t know if I like it enough for a bottle but it’s still pleasant nonetheless. Something very clean about it. Almost soapy but very nice.
Reviewed in This Post: Chypre Vanille, 2009, Sample Vial.