First In Fragrance: Visiting Aus Liebe Zum Duft, Bruchsal, Germany

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Val the Cookie Queen

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Hey all you APJ Friends!

As you may or may not have gathered from my last post, I took off to Bruchsal, Germany with my husband (Chris) last week. I have wanted to visit ALZD/First in Fragrance (FiF) for years. So Chris and I made a deal. We would drive up there for three days, delivering my cookies in Salzburg on the way. One day perfume, one day downhill biking and hiking, one day Munich.

First In Fragrance

Visiting Aus Liebe Zum Duft, Bruchsal, Germany

ALZD/FiF was founded by Georg R Wuchsa in the year 2000. Hop over to the website First In Fragrance and you can read the history behind it all. I would be willing to bet that many of us have ordered, and still order fragrance samples from here. There is no better way to be able to try all of the hundreds of perfumes.


Filling Samples – How Does It Work?

There are four lovely ladies filling samples non-stop. All the samples are decanted from the original bottles. The sample is exactly what comes in the bottle. (I dunno if I am the only one to have noticed that sometimes carded samples do not smell the same as the perfume in the bottles.)

Of course many of the perfume houses are so small that they don´t do official samples anyway. There are around 2000, yep, two thousand, bottles to chose from. As the ladies look at the orders, they grab the bottles from the shelves and put them on a tray. Then back to the desk to fill the requested samples.
After completing several orders at once they return the bottles to their places, or at least that is the idea!! The orders are then beautifully packaged along with maybe some sweets, or little toys, perfumed feathers, and other little goodies. Making it a joy for anyone to receive, whether a small order or a big one. The girls fill at least 3000 samples a week.

ALZD/FiF now has a a beautiful range of cosmetics, and the Frederic Malle and Serge Lutens lines have recently been introduced. ALZD is now the online partner of the Austrian company www.naegelestrubell.at .

What did I buy? Travel sizes of Malle´s Iris Powder for me (I wish I had bought a big bottle, it´s divine), Dries Van Noten for the Blondeswunder, Monsieur for my personal trainer (He´s moving on from his 6 euro cologne ….!) and a BIG bottle of Portrait of a Lady for me. Finally. Chris came home with a bottle of Nasomatto´s Black Afgano. After getting over the initial disappointment of not being able to smoke it, he was quite happy. He never wears scent, but a few drops of this suits him really well. I have forbidden him to use more than half a spray at any one time. Two beautiful Diptyque candles joined the bag of goodies too.

It was an absolutely fabulous day. They have two canine noses, but only one was in the house. Beate Humbert, Georg´s right hand woman, has been with the company since day one. She took us through everything, from the offices, to the workplace and into the warehouse. Brilliant. Her son works there too, and it was their dog, Gatsby that was there. Chris split with him and took him for a walk, or perhaps the dog took him!

A million thanks to the whole ALZD crew it was such a brilliant day.

Following are pics, in no particular order. Chris took his camera and snapped lots of stuff. Had it been left to me you´d have had nothing. I suck at pics when I have to take them. Ask Portia.

Hallowe’en Bussis
CQ

29 comments on “First In Fragrance: Visiting Aus Liebe Zum Duft, Bruchsal, Germany

  1. Tara says:

    What a fantastic visit. It’s so nice to hear and see the people behind these online stores. Wow, 3000 samples a week is really something. Their hands must ache.

    Well done to Chris for the pics. How does your PT like Monsieur? No backing to Lynx after Malle 🙂
    Tara recently posted…In Rotation – Autumn 2017My Profile

    • cookie queen says:

      Hi Tara, sorry I am late ……! I think they must have had of steel. My gosh. Such a lot of work. Read the order, get up and get the bottles, sit down and fill the samples, handy label every sample with all info, make sure the right samples go with the right order, return bottles ………. It is one heck of a set up. Oh my gosh, yeeeeeeeeees, Monsieur was made for him. 😉 xxxxxxxx

  2. Tena says:

    Those pictures have me drooling !! Perfumes and puppies??
    Which Diptyque candles came home with you? The Pomander is a personal favourite.

    • cookie queen says:

      Oh yes Tena, you would have been in the ultimate heaven. And although we have not yet met, I suspect you would have had trouble pulling yourself away from Gatsby. He is a Vizsla – do you know the breed? Freaking gorgeous dog. Uhm, the Rose candle and the Oranger candle. Big hugs, Val xxxxxxx

  3. Sabine says:

    Awesome. I always wanted to go….
    Sabine recently posted…The Patchouli PigmentMy Profile

    • cookie queen says:

      We might be a be able to plan to go together one day. I would love that. I mean, it is within the realms of possibility ….. xxxxxxxxxxxxxx

  4. cassieflower says:

    Hi Val
    Wow! just Wow!
    What a place, I’d have to move in for the week. Nice haul for you, too. Iris Poudré is a beaut. Very elegant indeed. I’ve been thinking of the travel size POAL too. Soon.

    • cookie queen says:

      Hi cassie flower! That would be the best thing to do, absolutely. If I do get the chance to go again, I would spread over a couple of days. Oh yeah, kudos to Malle that they do travel sizes. It makes the stuff obtainable for all, even if it works out more pricey that a big bottle. Most of us won´t even use the 10mls up. Although in saying that, i did use up 10mls of PoaL over the last four months . Unheard of. Hence the large bottle. Bussis. xxxx

  5. crikey says:

    *swoons with envy*

    Yeah. That’s all.

  6. What a treasure trove! I like the low key bunker-esque charcoal grey facade. I was also fascinated to hear how exactly the ladies organise themselves with the sample filling, with the bottles on the tray etc. I was thinking the same as Tara that their fingers and wrists must ache. I know mine do from the least little decanting exercise. Plus they must encounter a bit of overspray which is a problem I often find with nozzles. I end up being covered from head to toe in ‘Eau de Decant’ after spraying relatively few scents. And it’s an issue on bottles at all price points. So I wonder how they get on there.

    I have dug out my sample of Iris Poudre to try again!
    Vanessa Musson recently posted…Returned to Sender: (an occasional series featuring postcards I wrote that have variously boomeranged their way back to me) – No 1: Galway, 2003My Profile

    • cookie queen says:

      Hi Vanessa ! Oh yes, some bottles are absolutely perfect to decant from, easy to spray, and no leakage. Others are not. You are right, price has nothing to do with it. A certain Master Perfumer´s bottles being amongst the WORST. LMAO. Oh I hope you love iris Poudre. Our little coven of three need a scent that w all wear. 😉 Bussis. xxxx

  7. australianperfumejunkies says:

    Heya Val,
    Love the FiF crew. Thanks for showing us their new digs.
    Portia xx

    • cookie queen says:

      Hey Honey! Yep, fantastic workplace, lovely gardens, terrace, and the Big Love Wuchsa has an office I would move into tomorrow. Hope he reads this. Hahahahahaha xxxxxx

  8. Tara C says:

    How great to see the operation in person! I love ordering from them.

    • cookie queen says:

      Morning Tara C! Oh it was. I have wanted to go for years. And my gosh do they work, from filling the samples, to advising, to boxing up the packages sent all over the world.
      And they handwrite every single label, including the date it was filled. Fantastic. 🙂 xxxx

  9. shiva-Woman says:

    The portals of scent heaven! What a great trip–I want to go now!
    shiva-Woman recently posted…First In Fragrance: Visiting Aus Liebe Zum Duft, Bruchsal, GermanyMy Profile

    • cookie queen says:

      Hi shiva-Woman. Hmmmmm. Heaven or hell. That is the question. It is enough to tip you right over the edge! I would go back in a heartbeat. xxx

  10. TinaG says:

    It is scent heaven. Such a great crew! I thoroughly enjoyed my visit back in May 2016, but soooo many fragrances! My head was spinning by the end. Thanks for the article & pics!
    xx Tina G

    • cookie queen says:

      Hey Tina! Nice to see you. Brilliant crew. Way too many perfumes. I f you don´t go with any ideas of what to look at, you´re knackered. xxxx

  11. Neva says:

    Thanks so much for the report and the pictures Val. I was always curious to see how big ALZD actually is. They have such a great wide choice of perfumes. I regularly order samples there and just a few days ago I’ve ordered Acqua di Parma’s Rosa Nobile for my mother as a birthday gift. It should arrive this week!

    • cookie queen says:

      Hello Neva! Well, it is not really huge, but perfume bottles are small, so tens of thousands of them fit in to the storage and as I said, about 2000 just on the shop floor. Way to many. I was overwhelmed and tried next to nothing. But more and more I enjoy hanging out with the variety of people that perfumes bring together, and less about sniffing stuff. I went really well organised and had a list with me. Forgot to look at it. 🙂
      Rosa Nobile is very lovely. I ordered a lot of samples from there over the years too. xxxx

  12. sandra says:

    Hi Val! What a treat! It is on my things to see list – one day hopefully. They are amazing in how quickly they send out samples. Sandra xoxo

    • cookie queen says:

      Hey Sandra! You are not that far away, relatively speaking, so maybe you will one day. But first to Belgium huh? Hugs, xxxxxx

  13. Amy says:

    I want to go to there!

    • cookie queen says:

      Hi Amy! It does kind of stake some arranging as it really is a bit off of the beaten track. But highly recommended if you get the chance! xxxxx

  14. Undina says:

    What a wonderful trip! And congratulations on your new bottles. Funny: the two you bought are the two full bottles that I have, love and wear.
    Undina recently posted…Light and Shadows: Ineke IdyllwildMy Profile

    • cookie queen says:

      Oh I love that Undina! I cannot stop wearing PoaL this year. I´ve always like it but suddenly, BAM, it became mine. Yep, it was a great trip. Ending up for five hours in Munich on s sunny warm day. We don´t get away much lately as I am permanently stuck in dough, plus we need to be around to help Oma and Opa (79 and 85) keep an eye on GreatGrandma. They are her carers and she is nearly 102. Hugs. xxxxx

  15. Anna Maria says:

    Very interesting trip Val love following your adventures. So many perfumes…. um heaven I think. Congrats on full bottle POAL, very nice xx

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