Amouage Memoir Man was released in 2010. I vaguely remember getting annoyed with the marketing fluff around it that didn't seem to connect with the actual fragrance. There was talk of masked identities, black swans, philosophy, and the poetry of Baudelaire. It was a bit too much for me, as well as for Memoir Man itself, a cozy yet green fragrance with some typical Amouage touches of frankincense and smoky wood. But I shouldn't have dismissed the fragrance itself as quickly as I did with the PR pitch. It deserves better.
Memoir Man opens as a green almost-fougere kind of perfume with its herbs and lavender at the helm. There's just enough sweetness to create a temptation, and a general air of a perfectly groomed gentleman (not that it would stop me from wearing it). Then comes absinthe, ghostly and wicked, yet this Amouage fragrance takes a turn away from the streets of Paris and into the woods. A pine forest, more accurately, with quite a bit of crunchy snow on the ground. And the Green Fairy? She turns into a wolf.
The green and pines (cones, trees, sap-- it's all there) are the best part of Amouage Memoir Man. Yes, the woody and incense in the dry-down are very nicely done and can be pretty satisfying. But it's the enchanted forest on its dangers and mythical creatures that has won me over. Surprisingly for Amouage, longevity and sillage are on the moderate side, but then again it can be the result of always using dab-on samples and not a spraying.
See more reviews by Persolaise and Kevin on NST.
Notes: basil, mint, frankincense, lavender, rose, oakmoss, leather, tobacco, absinthe, wormwood, sandalwood, guaiac wood, vanilla, amber.
Amouage Memoir Man ($240, 50ml) is available from Osswald, Twisted Lily, Luckyscent, Bergdorf Goodman, and select Neiman Marcus locations.
Wolf photo by Allison Bailey for wildspiritwolfsanctuary.org.