Liquorice Vetiver by SP Parfums, (2017)


Originally published on     5 May, 2017

New Perfume Review: Liquorice Vetiver EDP, (Sven Pritzkoleit) 2016

One of the newest and most intriguing perfumes to be nominated for an Art and Olfaction award is Sven Pritzkoleit’s Liquorice Vetiver for his SP Parfums, based in northern Germany.
“Home is where the perfume is. That deja-vu of our childhood scents, memories and the deepest parts of our dreams, instincts and soul. It is my hope that since everyone has scent-memory triggers, and ultimately wishes to re-discover happy memories, that my new scents will bring back those memories. Since my early childhood years I have been obsessed by the senses of taste and smell. I studied and became a pharmacist in the family owned apothecary, and for the past 20 years I’ve also studied perfumery by myself, beginning with the raw materials- naturals and synthetics, and reading books by Edmund Roudnitska, Jean-Claude Ellena, Mandy Aftel, and many more. Impressed by the combination of traditional and modern/experimental perfumery, in 2006 I created my first real perfume composition, Pink Patchouli. In the years that followed, I created many other formulas, searching for my own personal signature, always with the focus on the characteristic themes of my scent and science-driven memory. These perfumes ultimately became my “Essential Collection”. Each of my Essential Collection SP Parfums is composed and manufactured by myself with high quality raw materials.” -Sven Pritzkoleit, Perfumer (Transliterated for clarity purposes-RH)

Sven describes Liquorice Vetiver as “Shades of sunlight reflecting through a lovely forest in Autumn”. It definitely has that shadowy and cool vibe, but the shade provided by a large gnarled oak tree at the very edge of a height-of-summer August dry hayfield, You can see and feel the heat shimmering off the newly harvested earth. Smoke and wood and a vetiver that is bone-dry, all sweetened by a photo-realistic licorice accord with a hint of chocolate, as if a small child is running through the newly-baled sillage in bare feet.
The ground cover crackles under the child’s feet, and in a hidden pocket is a piece of black licorice softened by the heat and made sweet by an unwrapped square of chocolate now semi-melted. The licorice and chocolate mingle to create something, at times bitter or sour but also sweet, deep and complex. Together with the dry-as-sin hay bales, and the musty scent of the oak tree in the very near distance, Liquorice Vetiver creates a scent-memory that is nothing short of a wonder to behold. Perhaps the child ends the journey by skipping into an old house shuttered against the heat, and empties the pocket into a highly polished and reflective teak platter in the middle of a kitchen table, the chocolate-licorice amalgam blending with the sleek oiled teakwood of the platter, before running upstairs to wash before lunch and a well needed soporific nap in the August heat. Contemporary vernacular would describe it as “small-child-summer-realness”. Absolutely one of the most interesting perfumes I’ve worn in a very long time. Sillage and longevity are off the charts. If you are a vetiver-lover like me, I suspect you will love Liquorice Vetiver!

Worth noting: The SP Parfum website is primarily in German with some english, and so can be challenging to navigate.

Notes: Patchouli, nagarmotha (papyrus), cistrose (rockrose), vetiver, moss, amber, liquorice, green citrus and ylang-ylang accord, skin-solaire accord: (Ylang ylang, benzoin/styrax, tonka bean extract, musks.)

Disclosure: Many thanks to SP Parfums, Sven Pritzkoleit, and for supplying the sample. The opinions are my own

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