Fragrance X
First in Fragrance
My Photo
Location: New York, NY
© Copyright 2005-2011 Perfume-Smellin' Things
All rights reserved
Custom Search

Saturday, August 26, 2006

Guest Perfume Review: Orris by Andy Tauer

Review by Kelley

Fresh out of the tester (the tester is quite generous I might add—thanks Andy!) the scent is all about iris. Iris or Orris, is in this case known to perfumers as orrisroot and is actually the tuber of an iris plant and doesn’t refer to the flower. Iris can be cold or metallic smelling and sometimes even earthy but not in this case…it’s a sexy iris. The iris here is a slightly powdery accord, which smells a little like violet, which is combined with rose and leather.

As the Iris starts to fade after about 30 minutes on my skin, and the middle notes start to come forward, the smokiest rose accord I have ever smelled starts to shine. I should probably add at this point that I have traditional male skin that tends to gobble up/destroy rose notes for some reason. In fact, when I wear my bottle of Creed’s Fleurs de Bulgarie, the rose notes are almost gone before the alcohol dries! In Andy’s Orris, the rose notes last and last. At this stage, I smell rose and birch tar and sandalwood and it’s all breathtaking. This is my favorite part of the scent.

For me, the middle notes carry the fragrance all the way until the end with smoky rose and sandalwood. The only thing I would like to add is that before the scent disappears there is a very strange marijuana odor (not that I have ever smelled pot, it’s what I would imagine pot would smell like, right?). I would guess that this is the expensive agarwood Andy mentioned several times as included in this fragrance.

While testing this the other day, I had a good friend ask if I had roses for her and she was hurt when I told her I was testing a new fragrance! I was going to say that sillage is decent but not spectacular and stays pretty close to the skin after an hour or so…but, the last time I tested this I would get a whiff of it from several feet away even after having it on for hours. I don’t smell any spices or citrus. I don’t detect any ambergris or vetiver at all. For me the scent lasts a good 7 or 8 hours. Is this full bottle worthy for me? Nope. If he was making this for sale I probably would pass because I am saving for a bottle of his Lonestar Memories, which I would marry if it gave me a ring. Would I like to smell this on a woman…you bet! It’s a long lasting, beautiful rose and sandalwood fragrance that starts off with (I am sure) a very expensive Iris note. Andy, you are truly a genius. Where is this available? Well, sorry, it isn’t.

The Orris Secret Formula (not so secret, I stole this from Andy’s blog)

Top notes: Geraniol, Damascenone, Bulgarian rose absolute, Phenylethylalcohol, lemongrass, Linalool, benzylsalicylate, with black pepper and grapefruit and bergamot. (These smell like iris, rose, pepper, cinnamon, and citrus).

Middle notes: birch tar, cinnamon bark, hydroxycinnamaldehyde, and frankincense. (These ingredients add smokiness, incense, and more cinnamon).

Base notes: Amboxan, Sandalore, sandalwood from Australia, sandalwood from Mysore, Vetiverol, vetiver, methylcedrylketon, and agarwood. (These ingredients smell like ambergris, sandalwood, vetiver and finally agarwood).

The image is by Kelley.


Blogger tmp00 said...

Great review! I'm jealous I didn't get a tester of this one, but the reviews of it (like yours) make me want it to be produced.

BTW- blogger's acting up again, so responses to your review could be spotty today- this is my 5th try!

12:56 PM EDT  
Blogger Kelley said...

Thanks for leaving a message. The blog is showing that there are zero responses! I was feeling down in the dumps because no one responded until I saw that...they had!

I bet Andy (who read and sent me a wonderful email about the review) could be persuaded to produce Orris if enough people twisted his arm.

4:01 PM EDT  
Blogger Marina said...

Thank you so much for the review! Don't want to put any more pressure on Andy, but...Orris is wonderful. Just sayin' :-)

And yes, the blogger is the worst it has ever been today. This is the first time I was even able to log in! Sorry about that.

4:07 PM EDT  
Blogger elle said...

Wonderful review! I am praying Andy decides to market this scent. The leather and oud make it irresistible for me. You're very right - it is a sexy iris and that is a rare thing indeed. But I'm also mesmerized by the iris painting you included - perfectly captures the fluidity and beauty of the iris. Is it watercolor? I know from your blog that that's not your medium of choice now, but wondered if this was an earlier painting.

4:45 PM EDT  
Blogger lilybp said...

Great review of a great scent! Thanks, Kelley! And (to mix metaphors badly) I will add my voice to the twisting of Andy's arm. I want to buy this!!

Blogger is terrible today! That, and the fact that it's Saturday, are the reasons there aren't more responses to this wonderful review.

7:03 PM EDT  
Blogger Kelley said...

Thanks everybody for your kind words.

Marina, you are more than welcome. I consider myself lucky to be involved with your blog.

Elle, the iris painting is a watercolor. i painted it for my grandmother and when Marina asked for an image, it just seemed like a good idea to include one of mine.

lilyofbp, Andy mentioned on his blog that it would be very expensive to make. I think it would be worth it to have a sexy iris scent and surely it can't be more than some (Montale Oud series for example).

tmp00, do you visit Andy's blog? He answers just about every email so start twisting! Have you tried any of his other scents? Lonestar Memories is by far my favorite.

8:27 PM EDT  
Blogger tmp00 said...

I love Andy's stuff- Lonestar Memories is marvelous.

8:55 PM EDT  
Blogger Kelley said...

tmp00, didn't realize that you are Tom. Great reviews, by the way. Keep up the good work. Makes me want to check out Serge Lutens again. Maybe I can get past the skank notes that he uses. Or, maybe I can grow to love them.

9:44 PM EDT  
Blogger tmp00 said...


It took me a while (ask Columbina..) for some of the Lutens to "settle" on me. Of any line I've ever run into, his has been the most challenging and least immediately accessible IMHO. Several of them took more than a few tries before they clicked, but when they did, oh my!

I loathed skank notes until I tried some of SL's scents, and he and Sheldrake completely made patchouli acceptable after years of loathing.

For me, Andy Tauer is right up there in the pantheon with the vaunted house of Lutens, L’Air du Désert Marocain and Lonestar Memories are truly stunning, world class scents, and If Andy feels that Orris would be out of his sellable price range, he is simply dead wrong. Strange Invisible Perfumes markets far smaller bottles at a far higher price point, and as much as I liked some of their creations (I was there today), I didn't think they were all that over his creations

11:21 PM EDT  
Blogger tmp00 said...

BTW- I love your website: your work is marvelous, and your quote from "Auntie Mame" is both subtle and grand...

11:29 PM EDT  
Blogger chayaruchama said...

Dear Kelley-

Sorry to take so long to respond...

Your watercolor floors me-it's splendid.

I appreciate your review as well, as I've not had the opportunity to smell this, although the notes seduce by proxy!

I look forward [with pleasure!] to future posts...

8:34 AM EDT  
Blogger lilybp said...

Oh, I didn't realize the image was your own painting! It's beautiful!

9:49 AM EDT  
Blogger Kelley said...

Yes, lilyofbp, I am an artist by day and a perfume freak by night.

3:21 PM EDT  
Blogger katiedid said...

I've only got a chance to try his Orris today - was lovely to read this review to have in mind while I wear it. Excellent post (and excellent iris artwork, too, needless to say!)

7:14 PM EDT  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Andy Tauer's Orris is available at Lucky Scent ( as a limited edition of 200 bottles.

2:50 PM EST  

Post a Comment

<< Home