The discontinuation of Yohji Homme by Yohji Yamamoto is one of those weird mysteries of the perfume world. Or maybe it simply didn't sell enough, but honestly, I don't get it- doesn't everyone like a good sort-of masculine gourmand scent? With stuff like A*Men (Mugler) and the Lolita Lempicka one being major crowd pleasers and New Haarlem, Maurice Roucel's creation for Bond, the more exclusive alternative, being considered among the best of its kind, why didn't Yohji Homme become a cult favorite until after it vanished from shelves and acquired an ugly price tag?
The thing about this 1999 Yohji Yamamoto creation is that it's a lot more refined than the other scents in this group. Yes, it's loaded with coffee, chocolate and licorice, but it doesn't hit you on the head with sweetness and is more balanced thanks to a distinct spicy and almost floral heart (I swear I smell carnations, but it might be that gingerbread clove facet). It goes down smoothly and as far as women wearing it, I think it's easier than many others because it lacks that lavender and green fougere accord that often accompanies anise.
The sandalwood-amber drydown (the sandalwood, by the way, smells like the good stuff, which is another perk of using older bottles) makes Yohji Homme an excellent his, hers and a cashmere sweater perfume. It's friendly and cuddly but also smells quite refined and expensive. I love wearing it with a very NYC all-black ensemble just as much as I like sniffing it on a well-groomed and carefully dressed man. Yohji Homme is fun, edible and sexy without losing its urban edge. Too bad the general public didn't get its charm on time.
Yohji Homme 1999 perfume ad: couleurparfum.com