The gourmand style of perfume is the place where there is the most opportunity for something new. It is because it is the most recent genre of perfume. It is also because the set of foodie ingredients has been expanding rapidly. Perfumers are finding new ways to create unique accords based on edibles. It wasn’t until I tried Mancera Amber Fever that I began to consider the boozy ingredients gourmand, too.
Mancera has been one of the more adventurous brands pushing at the edges of gourmand types of fragrance. They have decided to work on variations of powerfully sweet versions. Amber Fever falls right into that continuum. The tweak to the formula this time is featuring whisky.
Boozy notes have been a part of perfumery longer than there have been gourmand perfumes. It is probably why I don’t think of them as part of the palette for these perfumes. Not sure why because I certainly include coffee and it has the same pedigree. Maybe it is because there hasn’t been a perfume which has pulled whisky apart into its gourmand-like facets as well as Amber Fever does.
It starts right away as hazelnut and whisky appear. Whisky has that barrel-aged scent. Hazelnut takes that thread while turning it into a nutty feel instead of wood. Tonka reinforces the trend. A thick treacly caramel coats all of it. Whisky has this inherent alcoholic sweet warmth. That finds the harmony with the sugary sweet viscosity of the caramel. This is where the whisky stands dissected by nut and caramel, transformed into a gourmand focal point. A lilting floral contrast around jasmine is followed by a base of white musks and amber. These later pieces add small incremental changes to the intense accord created at the beginning.
Amber Fever has 12-14 hour longevity and average sillage.
I have enjoyed being given a new perspective on the way whisky is used in perfume. Thanks to Amber Fever I now believe it is a gourmand ingredient.
Disclosure: This review was based on a sample provided by Mancera.