As I'm typing this review there are two other people around me wearing Ore by Slumberhouse. It smells and feels completely different on each of us. The Blond, who likes Ore very much and has already tried it several times, gets quite a bit of coconut oil on his skin. When he's the one wearing it, Ore is far less sinister than it can be. His younger brother whom I made try it on finds this Slumberhouse perfume distractingly gourmand (the poor guy always gets sprayed and dabbed when he visits. All in the name of science, of course). We're about to have some hot chocolate spiked with Godiva chocolate liqueur. It goes well with this perfume.
Ore is an enigma. Chocolate and booze, fatty coconut (not on me, though), aged scotch in wood barrels. But there's also a strong medicinal opening (sometimes. I smell it more clearly when wearing Ore in the morning rather than at night). The coziness and chocolate can be deceiving, like the witch's house on Hansel & Gretel. You enter at your own risk. Once you're in, the darkness can be soft and soothing like the memory of your childhood home. It might also conceal secrets and dangers, wicked temptations, and forbidden doors-- leading where?
I've worn Ore next to Serge Lutens Borneo 1834. The latter is dustier and has that typical camphor note. I don't know which one is the weirdest of the two, and I don't really care. Both are a fascinating studies of cocoa powder and its dark side. Borneo dries down to a patchouli and wood fest while the Slumberhouse creation ends up as a very balmy and balsamic wood fragrance. I can't say that loving one guarantees enjoying the other, but in my case it works.
Notes: oakwood, cocoa, mahogany, guaiac, Dittany of Crete, vanilla, whiskey lactone, Peru resin, black pepper, palmarosa, clary sage.
Slumberhouse Ore ($125, 30ml extrait de parfum) is available at Twisted Lily, Indiescents (where there's currently a 20% sale with code CEDAR), and directly from slumberhouse.com.
Image: Louise Brooks in the 1929 movie Pandora's Box via dvdbeaver.com.