Fragrances Inspired by the Sub-Continent

Hiya All,

You may know that I am a complete India-phile. The whole area including Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka call to me and though I have only visited India I wish to travel all six countries before I die.

Fragrances Sub Continent WikipediaPhoto Stolen WikiCommons

Today I thought we could look at a few scents with names that link them to my fave journey destination…

Fragrances Inspired by the Sub-Continent

Souffle des Indes Comptoir Sud Pacifique FragranticaPhoto Stolen Fragrantica

Souffle des Indies by Comptour Sud Pacifique: Imagine if you took all the lovely, sweet smells and tastes of India and added them to a creamy milk/yoghurt drink. It’s called a Lassi and I adore them. Souffle des Indies by Comptour Sud Pacifique then is the smell of a Lassi with fruit. MMMMMMM. Sweet, creamy, slightly spicy and lovely pureed or finely chopped fruit mixed in, really it’s worth the ticket to India to taste the real thing.

Ambra del Nepal Il Profumi di Firenze FragranticaPhoto Stolen Fragrantica

Ambra del Nepal by Il Profumi di Firenze: A beautiful opener with that medicine cabinet, herbal and caramelised sugar hiding a Crème brûlée sweetness that washes out from under the bold opening and gives the most divine caramel coffee, vanilla cream, bitter chocolate, Ambra Del Nepal is a sweet and spicy Oriental Gourmand frag hit. Ambra Del Nepal is more gourmand that the usual amber that I’m attracted to but I love it.

Nepal Aoud Montale FragranticaPhoto Stolen Fragrantica

Nepal Aoud by Montale: OK so this has the tell tale Montale signature all over it. Their own blend that is their oud, some leathery smell and the plasticky saffron note that I like so much. I don’t see the Nepal correlation but Nepal Aoud is a nice soft, not too in your face, synthetic oud fragrance that melts into your skin and becomes a lovely rough amber then vanilla till drydown.

Mohur Extrait Neela Vermeire Creations FragranticaPhoto Stolen Fragrantica

Mohur Extrait by Neela Vermeire Creations: As if Mohur was not big, beautiful and outrageous enough. Neela and Bertrand got together, tweaked the ingredients a touch and amplified the whole fragrance by doing an extrait. OMG! It is seriously heart stoppingly beautiful. Everything you adored about Mohur but more intense and it lasts for days, on fabric for weeks. If there is a fragrance that has blown out the back of my head by sheer enormity and still retains its rose scented languid beauty, it’s Mohue Extrait.


Tibetan Mountain Temple Pacifica FragranticaPhoto Stolen Fragrantica

Tibetan Mountain Temple by Pacifica: Sweet and spicy citrus woods open up Tibetan Mountain Temple and a fun GingerbreadMan accord. There is a cool resinous feeling of incense that evolves through the wear and a delicious creaminess that collides perfectly with the clean patchouli. This is a warming fragrance that smells a LOT more expensive than it is.


The Taj Mahal’s Eternal Love Romea D`Ameor FragranticaPhoto Stolen Fragrantica

The Taj Mahal’s Eternal Love by Romea D`Ameor: Here we have a wet, fruity opening that hints at the very early morning, sunrise at the Taj Mahal. I love this time of day there. If you ever get to Agra make sure your guide gets you to the Taj Mahal about 40 minutes before it opens. If you are the first i line you will see the Taj as few others have ever seen it, empty of humanity. An aquatic floral that ends in woods, very wearable.

So we have had a look at some fragrances inspired by the subcontinent, did I miss something you know or love? Tell me in the comments please.

Portia xx




34 comments on “Fragrances Inspired by the Sub-Continent

  1. willa says:

    Indian fragrances to me = jasmine and sandalwood.
    I’m surprised you didn’t mention any Guerlains x

    • australianperfumejunkies says:

      Sorry Willa,
      I talk about Shalimar so often it felt like I was going into overkill. Of course it is one of the ultimate Indian cross references but I decided to go farther afield just this once.
      Portia xx

  2. Ainslie says:

    Love this review! Thankyou xx I want to go to India STAT! Now I also want to try Ambra!! Is it similar to Hermes Ambre Narguile? Yum!! Xx

    • australianperfumejunkies says:

      NOTHING is like Ambre Narguille. Also known as the Nazgul. That is a once in a lifetime Amber that can never be repeated or replicated.
      Ambra is softer, cushier and infinitely more wearable for living.
      I think you’ll love India.
      Portia xx

  3. Eleebelle says:

    India is one of the places I want to visit most! If I can put in another suggestion, L’Artisan Safran Troublant smells just like kheer to me and is exquisitely creamy and delicious.

    I appreciate you mentioning Tibetan Mountain Temple. I bought it on a whim and ended up thinking it was much sweeter and much less incense-y than I wanted. I should give it another shot.

    • australianperfumejunkies says:

      Hi Eleebelle,
      If you had a preconceived idea about how it should smell and it didn’t live up to it then maybe a second chance with no expectations could prove fruitful.
      You may still think it’s shite but try it, you may be pleasantly suprised.
      Portia xx

  4. einsof says:

    Hindu Honeysuckle by Providence Perfume Co

    the original formulation of ‘love’ from Aveda (the further incarnations contained australian sandalwood, which gave it a completely different vibe.)in fact, Aveda once had a whole collection of Purefumes based on the subcontinent: Shanti, Chandana, Tantra, etc.

    i agree that motia (jasmine attar) definitely speaks to this….

    (“thank you India, thank you providence, thank you disillusionment!)

    • australianperfumejunkies says:

      Hey Einsof,
      Yes, the Australian sandalwood is a more mentholated creature, sharper and a little medicinal in the opening. Even our Mysore grown here has a bit of that. Our soil is so different to India.

      Portia x

  5. FeralJasmine says:

    India is my dream trip. Maybe one day. Portia, why don’t you take a gaggle of perfumistas to India? I adore Mohur Extrait, and just ordered some soufflé des Indies because I couldn’t resist your description.
    Did want to mention a potential problem with Ambra del Nepal. This one was my beloved daytime amber for a few years, but when I emptied my bottle and bought a new one, it was more like water, very little scent of any kind. It was bought from an authorized retailer, not second-hand or anything. Such a disappointment! How I long to have the original back again. I wonder if anyone else has noticed a reformulation problem.

    • australianperfumejunkies says:

      Oh NO! That is bad news about the Ambra del Nepal, I wonder if it had been poorly stored? Mine came from Surrender To Chance a while ago.
      Funny you should mention hosting an India trip FeralJasmine. We have been trying to work out how it could be done super affordably. Maybe 2016?
      Portia x

  6. Undina says:

    I know, it’s too obvious and all that, but how about NVC’s Bombay Bling (and, while we are at it, Trayee as well)? ; -)

    Other than Mohur, I haven’t tried any of the perfumes from your list but now I’m curious about the one from Montale.
    Undina recently posted…Maui Vacation: Perfumes, Flora & Fauna, Food and PerfumesMy Profile

    • australianperfumejunkies says:

      Hey there Undina,
      I worry that I bang on about the original 3 Neela Vermeire Creations too much so I’m really glad you mention them. The perfect representation of India through a French idiom.
      Portia xx

  7. Robert H. says:

    Gorgeous evocative writing as per usual, Portia! and Mohur Extrait??? oh god…..where’s my Visa card….

    • australianperfumejunkies says:

      HA HA HA!! Yes, it is BEYOND amazing.
      Thanks RobertH
      Portia xx

      • FeralJasmine says:

        I recently got my greedy little hands on some Mohur Extrait and was so wowed that I wrote an extra review! Did you get it?

      • australianperfumejunkies says:

        Yes I do. I am using it as your next post!
        It is freaking amazing, I’m glad you love it too.
        Thanks FeralJasmine. XXXX

      • FeralJasmine says:

        I have never smelled anything like it, and I love the Mohur Edp, but nothing is like the extrait!

  8. choette says:

    I am curious as to how you tried the American brand Pacifica’s Tibetan Mountain Temple? It was one of the first fragrances the company produced and, in my humble opinion, one of their best (along with the now d/c Avalon Juniper, Bali Lime Papaya and Egyptian Bergamot Rose). I have a feeling that TMT might also get axed….such a shame…it is incredibly affordable and whenever I wear it everyone compliments me.

    • Eleebelle says:

      I know the sprays and the solids aren’t always identical, but Avalon Juniper still exists on the website in the solid perfume.

      • choette says:

        Thanks, Eleebelle…I already have three solids stashed away! Unfortunately the solids don’t have the longevity but I enjoy just sniffing them from the small canister!

    • australianperfumejunkies says:

      Hey Choette,
      I bought a decant from Surrender To Chance. Sadly Pacifica is not available yet in Australia.
      Portia xx

      • choette says:

        That’s too bad…the tibetan mountain temple candle is amazing…more resinous and less sweet than the EDP….if you can get your hands on some more samples it is worth exploring this line…aside from being ridiculously affordable it is also all natural…..

  9. RuthF says:

    Portia, I’ve definitely seen Pacifica here, I think it was David Jones. They had the solids and roll-ons, not sure about the sprays though.

    • australianperfumejunkies says:

      WOW!! That is interesting. I’ll look for it next time I’m shopping in town.
      Thanks RuthF
      Portia xx

  10. poodle says:

    I’ve never felt the call of India like a lot of people. I think the time it would take to get there is a huge deterrent for me. I’ll just experience it through the magic of Mohur.

    • australianperfumejunkies says:

      Don’t you live in North America Poodle? from New York is only 14 hours. Yes, that is quite a jump but if you take some sleeping tablets you arrive and it feels like it only took a moment.
      Mohur is a wonderful way to experience India too. When I can’t physically be there Mohur is an excellent substitute.
      Portia xx

  11. mim says:

    Happy belated Birthday!
    That’s my dream trip too! I like Pacifica a lot, also Mexican Cocoa (wrong continent, but so good!). Love all these recs!
    L’Artisan Safran Troublant (dessert-y) and Montale Indian Saffron are both my top saffrons, most spices read as indian to me but especially safffron and cardamon.

  12. Tim says:

    Hi Portia,
    Late to the party.   
    Having never been to India or tried any of the perfumes you’ve mentioned above… think I might need to rectify these. One at a time I guess.
    A couple perfumes did come to mind:
    I think the inspiration of Hermes’ Un Jardin après la Mousson is India (after a Monsoon downpour). I don’t quite get the warmth or the spice that I’d associate with India. 
    L’Artisan’s Dzongkha is, if my memory serves me right, inspired by the Dzongs of Bhutan. I love this scent. Although the prominent note for me is the iris the dry combo of vetiver/leather/incense note is so so calming. Beautiful! 
    X… Tim   

    • australianperfumejunkies says:

      Hey there Tim,
      I have these frags sitting on my desk. You should come over and smell them.
      LOVE the Hermes and I think there’s a bottle of Dzongkha around here somewhere too.
      Portia xx
      Portia xx

      • Tim says:

        I might just jump on that offer.
        You are very sweet and kind to offer.
        Let’s work something out after you move.
        XXX… T

  13. Holly says:

    Just for fun, there’s the sadly discontinued DS&Durga My Indian Childhood. I recently ordered a sample of Nasomotto’s Hindu Grass but haven’t had a chance to sniff. I think several of the frags from La Via del Profumo are evocative of the region. A personal favorite is Tawaf which is a spectacular jasmine.

    I also just have to mention that I think you would love taking a look at White Lotus Aromatics that is out of Washington state here in the US. They have gorgeous ruhs and attars. Even if you never get a chance to sample their stuff, reading about their endeavors will illuminate your spirit!

    • australianperfumejunkies says:

      Heya Holly,
      Great choices. Yes, La Via del Produmo does great sub-continent and beyond inspired scents, I forgot Hindu Grass too, wonderful.
      White Lotus Aromatics, looking them up now.
      Portia xx

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