Bat by Ellen Covey for Zoologist Perfumes 2015


Post by Azar


Hello APJ,

There has been a lot of buzz about bats on perfume blogs of late directly related to the new Bat fragrance created by Ellen Covey for Victor Wong of Zoologist Perfumes, Toronto. Ellen has an uncanny ability to recreate the ambient fragrance of places where she has lived, worked and visited. On her Olympic Orchids website, there is an entire category devoted to “Scents of Place”. The Bat fragrance, to my nose, is definitely about a place (a cave) and does not, thankfully, smell like its namesake. On the perfume bottle, the portrait of the bat created by Victor Wong’s colleague Daisy Chan, appears to be some kind of leaf nosed fruit bat (Dermanura sp.), While a few bats are reported to have pleasant odors most do not, at least as far as we humans are concerned.

Over the years, as part of her university work on bat hearing and echolocation, Ellen has visited bat habitats throughout the Americas. If any perfumer on the planet is qualified to create a fragrance for a bat cave it is Dr. Ellen Covey!

Bat by Zoologist Perfumes 2015

Bat by Ellen Covey

Bat Zoologist Perfumes FragranticaFragrantica

Fragrantica gives these featured accords:
Top: Banana, fruity notes, soil tincture
Heart: Fig, tropical fruits, myrrh, resins, green notes
Base: Musk, leather, vetiver, sandalwood, tonka bean

My first impression of Bat recalls the smell of parched earth moistened by rain, the fragrance of roots, vetiver, lime and a breath of banana (a la Todd Oldham). There is something about this combination of fruit, dirt, wet stone and vetiver that evokes not only the damp darkness of a cave but the magical lore surrounding the creature itself. As the fragrance dries the smell of petrichor changes as Bat takes on the scent of raw beets, decomposing leaves, friable humus, peat moss, musk, figs and myrrh. This description sounds a bit heavy but, like the smell of peat moss, it is vegetal and light. To me the heart of Bat is a scent for gardeners and people who love the smell of cool, rich earth and green growing things. As time passes the fragrance becomes progressively lighter and cooler with a kind of effervescent quality that suggests the airborne grace of bats in flight. At about 40 minutes sandalwood and tonka bean lift Bat into a woody, vanilla realm that, combined with earth elements, musk and banana, create a comfortingly sweet, fuzzy effect lasting for hours.

Bat Zoologist Perfumes Teacher Traveler Flying Foxes (aka Fruit Bats) FlickrFlickr

With the exception of the initial impression of petrichor, Bat is really quite shy. Sillage is, at the most, moderate and the fragrance remains relatively intimate for hours.

Have you tried Bat or any of the Zoologist perfumes? Tell us what you think. Also stay tuned for more about Bat. In March I will be doing a Mega-Draw for all the fragrances I’ve reviewed in January and February 2016.

Zoologist Perfumes has $125/60ml

Azar xx


24 thoughts on “Bat by Ellen Covey for Zoologist Perfumes 2015

  1. I really enjoy Ellen’s work so I definitely want to try this one! The combination of fruit and soil in Bat sounds conceptually a bit like the fruit and decay of Olympic Orchids Tropic of Capricorn and that is one of my favorite scents ever!


    • Hello LaDonna,
      Tropic of Capricorn is one of my favorite scents too. Comparing the two I would say that Bat is lighter and more focused with a bit of a green element. The fruits are sweet but not as ripe to my nose as those in Tropic of Capricorn. The mineral aspect of the soil and the petrichor effect are the dirt elements I notice the most. I think you might enjoy this one!
      Azar xx


      • Hi again La Domna,
        Just wanted to comment on the Cicada. Great design! Perhaps there should be a perfume by that name! Also, sorry about the typo above.
        Azar xx


      • Yes, I definitely think I would enjoy it! I always love a scent full of contrast, and the thought of a petrichor note really intrigues me!

        And thank you for your kind words about my embroidery. Cicada would indeed be a good name for a perfume! πŸ™‚


  2. Azar,
    I love the Sydney fruit bats. They are huge and furry and have an incredible smell. FΓΌr, urine, bed head and animal musk. Disgusting and gorgeous. Even in the botanic gardens here they have made a colony. I love to go smell them.
    The Zoologist bottles look so solid and I bet Ellen has filled Bat with wonder.
    Portia xx


    • Portia,
      The photo of the fruit bats in Sydney is amazing. Someday, when we visit Sydney, the botanic gardens must be on the list! Do the fruit bats live there year round? I can just see you doing a video sniff of fruit bats smells somewhere near their tree. πŸ˜‰
      Azar xx


      • Yes, they nest there year round. Sadly the Botanic Garden staff try to scare them away regularly, it’s abominable and makes me furious with sadly impotent rage. They have everyone convinced they are doing it for good.
        When you come to Sydney we will do that video, promise.
        Portia xx


  3. Having been lucky enough to have an after dinner sniff upstairs, I rmember it being quite luscious. Fantastic review. I look forward to trying it again. Hugs. xxxx


    • Hi Val!

      The Bat in the bottle above might be a little different from the one you tried in late summer (or not?) but it is definitely “luscious” and dirty at the same time. I wonder how it compares to the scent of Portia’s fruit bats pictured above? πŸ™‚

      Yesterday Gomez was wafting his Pionus parrot perfume for quite a long time. This honey, powdery floral scent is amazing. Have you ever smelled Pionus?

      Azar xxxx


    • Hi Tara,
      The bottles are beautiful and the artwork well done and very charming.
      So far I have tried Zoologist Hummingbird and, of, course Bat.
      Azar xx


    • Hi Victor,

      Thanks for stopping by! Your website and your products are amazing. The is art work too! I also found you on Etsy.

      From what I understand “petrichor” is simply a word (invented by a couple of Aussies) for the smell of rain or impending rain as the humidity releases an oil in the wet earth. Geosmin is an actual chemical compound that can create this smell of wet earth. I’m splitting bat hairs here but I just love to use a new word whenever I can. πŸ˜‰

      Azar xxx


  4. I haven’t been a fan of the Zoologist scents so far, sadly. I found them a bit muddy and fractious; they didn’t sit at all well on my skin. I’d like to try this one though as (a) I love Tropic of Capricorn, and (b) I love bats. Sounds like I might need to get a sample winging my way soon.


  5. The banana note intrigues me for some reason. I had a banana scented shower gel and I really liked it. I’d love a perfume that has that note but doesn’t smell like suntan lotion or a frozen drink.


    • Poodle,
      Have you ever tried Todd Oldham? Bat’s banana has a similar sweetness but is a much more subtle and sophisticated banana πŸ™‚ Also…I really wish someone would figure out a formula for Pionus!
      Azar xx


  6. I am most intrigued by this Bat perfume and cant quite imagine what it may be like in real-life. I see Todd Oldham mentioned a la the banana note (which i did get) so this spurs me on to get acquainted with Bat. (I was always afraid of those little creatures as a girl, afraid they would get caught in my hair). Ellen Covey is on my list of perfumers to explore in 2016. cheers….


    • Hi Pats!

      As I mentioned to Poodle, Bat’s bananas are more subtle and sophisticated than Todd’s. But then, as you well know, Todd is really out there, very strong and very fruity.

      If you recall the smell of parched earth right before and during a rainstorm you will have a good idea of what I perceive when I initially spritz Bat.

      Ellen has great introductory sample boxes for sale and right now she is doing a draw for a gift certificate on her blog site Hop over there and take a look if you have a moment!

      Azar xx


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