New Perfume Review Auphorie Miyako- Glorious Osmanthus

There are perfumes that I believe are only achievable by a small independent perfumer. The raw materials can only be sourced in small batches. They can push concentrations to higher levels. Frankly, they can take the risk of failing. Because if they miss their vision there’s always the next idea. When they come together they reach into different places than most other perfumes. Many of the perfumes I write about from the independent perfume community are emblematic of this style of derring-do. Another prime example is Auphorie Miyako.

Auphorie is the line of Eugene and Emrys Au based in Malaysia. The Aus have a stated goal of producing perfumes that are difficult to mass produce. On top of that they are scavengers of exotic raw materials which they use in their compositions. Miyako was one of their first releases. The brief was to imagine walking through the ancient city of Miyako during the height of the osmanthus flower season. As you stroll by the flowers their bouquet arises. The Aus have made one of the most intensely satisfying osmanthus fragrances I have tried.

eugene and emrys au

Eugene and Emrys Au

Osmanthus is one of my favorite perfume raw materials because of its dual nature of having very distinct apricot and leather facets with the floral sweetness. It makes it a perfume all on its own. Except in the case of Miyako the Aus decide to go all in by doubling up on the fruit and leather allowing the osmanthus to pivot through its phases buttressed by similar notes enhancing the experience.

Miyako opens with a fruity trio of peach, yuzu, and apricot. The early moments are the fuzzy peach and tart yuzu before the apricot persists. By having apricot as a note on its own it allows the osmanthus to sort of rise up out of it. What arrives with the osmanthus is a lilting green tea note which floats along as the apricot begins to modulate towards the leather. To further that transition the Aus add in their own leather accord. This is black motorcycle jacket leather. It has a bit of oiliness to it which matches the floral source of the more transparent leather. There is a moment about an hour or two in where the osmanthus is laid bare with all of its character splayed out and enhanced when Miyako is at its pinnacle. Eventually things must move on. Hinoki and sandalwood provide the woody aspect of the base accord; patchouli and musk come along a little later to finish things.

Miyako is extrait strength and has 14-16 hour longevity but moderate to no sillage.

Miyako is a perfume which could have gone off the rails if the Aus had added even a smidge more apricot or leather. Instead Miyako stands as an example of why independent perfumery can so often get it gloriously correct.

Disclosure; This review is based on a sample I received from Auphorie.

Mark Behnke

Editor’s Note: Auphorie Miyako was a winner in the Artisan category at the 2016 Art and Olfaction Awards.

New Perfume Review Atelier Cologne Rendez-Vous- Softness of Purpose


Atelier Cologne feels like such a mature perfume brand I have a hard time reminding myself that they are just under five years old. Creative Directors Sylvie Ganter-Cervasel and Christophe Cervasel were clear-eyed about what they wanted Atelier Cologne to be about. Over the last five years that clarity of vision has made one of the most consistently pleasing line of perfumes from any perfume producer going. They have taken a staid form of fragrance and re-invigorated it with their creativity. The latest release is called Rendez-Vous and as they have done so often they offer something new to the whole concept of cologne.

sylvie and christophe

Sylvie Ganter-Cervasel and Christophe Cervasel

Perfumer Jerome Epinette is back for his eleventh fragrance in the Atelier Cologne line. The keynote for Rendez-Vous is a Chinese osmanthus that carries a particular luminescence to it unusual in this floral note. The apricot and leather components of osmanthus are here but this has a sun burnished glow to it, as well. It makes it a different but wholly appropriate heart note to build a cologne around. M. Epinette takes traditional bracing elements on top and after the osmanthus appears he lets Rendez-Vous turn plush and soft as if you were sinking into a soft chair or a feather pillow. It is this overtly subdued finish which takes Rendez-Vous into unexplored territory within the cologne genre.


Jerome Epinette

M. Epinette begins in very familiar cologne territory with bergamot, lemon, and pink pepper as his opening stanza. This is classic cologne architecture. What comes next is not. The osmanthus comes to the foreground and as I mentioned above it is like it exists in its own private ray of sunshine. The remainders of the top notes almost act like dew being burned off by that sunbeam. The apricot quality comes out and it is rich and chewy. Orris combines with this to create a decadent duet, this is a fruity floral combination I can completely enjoy. As the osmanthus begins to shift towards the leathery qualities, violet leaves sharpen that transition with slightly metallic green borders. The base is an indulgent suede leather accord accompanied with a gentle white musk cocktail. All of this is as soft as a loved one’s caress. Rendez-Vous comes to an end in a most unexpected place, serenely.

Rendez-Vous has 10-12 hour longevity and above average sillage.

Rendez-Vous is why I look forward to the latest release from Atelier Cologne. Every single release to date has been recognizably a cologne. Every single release to date has given me something new to consider on what that word, cologne, really means when I use it. Rendez-Vous fits right in with the family. I look forward to my next rendezvous with Atelier Cologne.

Mark Behnke

Editor’s Note: Mme Ganter-Cervasel and M. Cervasel were married a few weeks ago and the picture above is from their wedding via their Facebook page.