Sniff Test Fragrance Review: Atkinsons 24 Old Bond Street Triple Extract Mystic Essence
Sniff Test Fragrance Review
Atkinsons is a British niche perfumer founded by James Atkinson in 1799 who would go on to become the official perfumer of the English Royal Court. 24 Old Bond Street, the location of its early perfume lab, is an aromatic-woody scent featuring notes of whisky, juniper berry, cardamom, rose, black tea, cedar, Ambergis and musk. It was blended by two innovative perfumers: Christine Nagel and Violaine Collas.
The revived British brand is celebrating ‘200 years of perfume snobbery’ (at least they’re honest?). This formulation will more than satisfy fans who have lamented the bestselling 24 Old Bond Street eau de cologne’s lack of staying power: this is an extremely concentrated and alcohol-free version. It comes in a handsome ombré amber apothecary jar and, befitting a perfume oil, is dispensed with a swipe or two from a glass pipette applicator (very posh, like Gucci’s bottles for The Alchemist’s Garden). Where the eau is bracing, this is moodier. The Turkish rose and astringent black tea come through on drydown more than the crisp cucumber and juniper. What lingers—tenaciously—is balsamic warmth. 3 out of 4
Have you noticed that so many of the designer fragrances these days smell suspiciously similar? That’s because fragrance houses create scents to appeal to a global audience. The cost of launching a luxe perfume can exceed $60 million which is a big financial risk should the scent fail at retail. To hedge their bets, these companies hire trend forecasters and market research firms to predict which notes and fragrance styles will appeal to the greatest number of potential clients. That’s why you’ve seen so many tuberose and rose-themed scents lately. And while this makes financial sense, it makes for dozens of similar fragrances. All this is a prelude to the fact that I appreciate niche perfumers like Atkinsons who follow their passion and muse – instead of market research.
I immediately smell the fresh juniper berry and cardamom notes – but these are warmed by the whisky and cedar. And while I don’t get the black tea, I do smell the rose which is a nice balance to the woods and musk. It’s the perfect scent for a cold, winter day walking through London. 3 out of 4
Sniff Tests are the personal and professional opinions of Nathalie Atkinson and Cityline’s Dave Lackie.