Tea Rose Amber (The Perfumer's Workshop)

The original Tea Rose is a marvelous fragrance, one of the seven wonders of the olfactory world (not sure what the other six are, but they sound good), something that delivers more than you'll ever pay for. Unbeknownst to many a fumehead, there are three Tea Rose flankers: Tea Rose Jasmin, Tea Rose Mesk, and Tea Rose Amber. Rumors of something called Tea Rose Rosebud abound, but I have never even seen a picture of that one. I'm not really sure it even exists. If someone out there has it, please speak up, I'd love to hear about it. Amber, Mesk, and Jasmin are a little more well-known, but all three are difficult to find, and probably impossible to sample. Fortunately they're cheap enough to blind buy without risk.

Tea Rose Amber can be found in one ounce bottles at Marshalls or TJ Maxx for $5. If you happen to see it, buy it. You have purchased fragrances for twenty-five dollars that are not nearly as good as this one is. I'm not saying Amber is as good as the original Tea Rose - sadly it isn't - but it's still very good. It's a simple amber, mainly synthetic sandalwood and vanilla with a touch of skin musk. Its top accord is very brief and rather interesting, an animalic honey note with a dash of cinnamon and nutmeg, but it's gone within five minutes. The warm vanillic wood note, enshrouded in soft musk, pretty much dominates the show from that point onward. These notes smell well crafted and lucid, but they weaken fairly quickly. It's also difficult to determine what the components of the amber actually are, beyond the handful of notes I've already mentioned. I'd like to think this scent is more complex than I've given it credit for, but can't say there's much in its pyramid. Maybe expecting more for $5 is unreasonable.

Unlike its progenitor, Amber is quiet and short-lived. Expect maybe three or four hours out of it before it fades off without a trace. I own this fragrance because I think The Perfumer's Workshop is a quality outfit that sells surprisingly high-quality perfumes for very little money (their's is not drugstore fare), and there is almost nothing written about Tea Rose Amber, so I wanted to get some info about it out there. I could be mistaken, but I think this is the only review of this fragrance on the internet. It was released in 1999, and the fact that it has flown under the radar for almost fifteen years is interesting. However, I will warn that if you're an amber fanatic, owning and wearing this scent will be an underwhelming experience for you. It can't compete with Amber Sultan or Ambre Precieux. It's something pleasant for a Saturday afternoon shopping, or baking cookies for the kids. If you enjoy collecting hard-to-find fragrances, you'll probably enjoy owning and occasionally wearing Tea Rose Amber.

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