Olympic Amber is one of the unlisted scents from Ellen Covey’s small artisan house, Olympic Orchids, and as a card-carrying Amber-Lover, this so-called Wild Card is right up my alley.
Out of the vial it’s straight-up smokey amber, with a spicy kick that differentiates it from my most favorite amber (so far) Ambre Fetiche. Like the two perfumes I reviewed previously from this independent fragrance line, Olympic Amber is a thoughtful, well-composed, and well-balanced perfume.
While it is a straight-up Amber with a capital “A,” it shares the creamy, cocoa-buttery aspect that wooed me successfully in Javanica, with a similarly chewy/sweet flourish. The spicy aspect, which I’m coming to recognize as a signature accord of Ellen’s, smells like a combination of nutmeg and frankincense, bolstered and smoothed by a vanillic-woody base. That woody base, which I’m guessing contains both cedar and sandalwood in some form, has just the right tang of “human-flesh-but-better-accord,” that, if possible, I would slather all over my person, and then curl up on an exotic hide and take a nap (see above image).
L’Ombre Fauve is the ultimate sensual amber (yuuummm labdanum!), and if that was a little too much for you, and you’re hankering after a sexy, but slightly cleaner adaptation, then Olympic Amber is a must try.
Absolutely full-bottle worthy, and would make a scrupmtious masculine.
My sample of Olympic Amber was generously provided by the perfumer.
Above painting: The Tepidarium, by Lawrence Alma-Tadema (1836-1912)
6 thoughts on “Getting to Know You: Olympic Orchids, Olympic Amber”
You realize, Dee, that I’ll be living by my mailbox now, don’t you? And it’s all your fault – and Ellen Covey’s! 😉
How does it compare to my own favorite amber – Ambre Sultan? Just because I’m curious, and to think that once upon a time, I loathed amber.
To be honest with you, when I tested Ambre Sultan, it was on a cotton-ball, because my bare arms had about ten other fragrances on them already… so I’m not able to say!
I can tell you that it’s less sweet than Etro’s Ambra, a little sweeter (and spicier) up top than Ambre Fetiche, not so skanky as L’Ombre Fauve, darker and smoother than Prada EDP, and fuller-bodied than Prada’s L’Eau Ambree… it’s yummy! 😉
*waiting in anticipation to hear what you think of it*
Well, you’ll be reading all about it! 😀 Darker than Prada…hmmm…I didn’t particularly care for Prada, but you had me somewhere around…’smoother’.
What thrills ahead!
… it’s very smooth!
A HFBB fragrance, love that. I struggle with amber, because I don’t get this note pinned down, I always put ambers in one of two distinct groups and I am not sure which is the real amber. For example Ambre Fetiche and Ambre Sultan are in one group – medicinal. L’Eau d’Ambre and the Prada ambers are in the other – sweet. Can you understand what I mean or are you shaking your head at my amber-ignorance? I am amber- challenged!
Hahahha, HFBB, LOL.
No way, B., I totally get what you’re saying! In fact, I wrote a new post last night about the variance in ambers (still needs revision), which I find interesting. That is, that there is such great variation between amber “solinote” perfumes… I don’t know if there is a *real* amber, although Victoria is talking about the Amber 83 base (via the Mitzah review) on Bois de Jasmin today.
(here’s a link for other readers: http://boisdejasmin.typepad.com/_/2011/01/christian-dior-la-collection-mitzah-perfume-review.html)
I draw the line a little differently, and use terms like dirty/clean, dark/light (I think I’m anosmic to what people call “medicinal,” even in ouds!), and when I did a side-by-side comparison of Olympic Amber next to Ambre Noir (from SSS), some interesting features stood out: OA seemed bright and clean in comparison, mildly sweet (opposed to sticky sweet), and almost *crisp* (think “apple”). I know that sounds weird, but this amber is different, it’s really good, and even if you’re an amber hater, you should give it a try!