Arz el-rab by Parfums Berdoues is a Woody Spicy fragrance for women and men. Arz el-rab was launched in 2015. The nose behind this fragrance is Cyrill Rolland. Top note is Ginger; middle note is iris; base note is Cedar.
This is, by far, my favorite of the Grand Crus collection. I could see why others might find it a bit too masculine or be disappointed by how quickly the (absolutely beautiful) sparkling ginger top note disappears, or find it not quite strong enough for their liking, but I have been looking for a clean, unisex, fresh wood type scent that doesn't get too cologney for ages, and this fits the bill perfectly. It's chic and unique without being overly complex or heavy. Exactly what I gravitate towards.
Longevity is fairly weak on skin however, so I make sure to spray my clothes as it lasts much, much longer. The cedar heavy portion of this scent's life lasts for hours (easily 8+). I can still smell it the following day on my clothes, and this morning, when I smelled the sweater I was wearing last night, I finally found the soft iris notes and it just makes me love this fragrance more.
This also isn't a sillage bomb, which is perfect for me, as I much prefer skin scents or ones that wear fairly close and just give those standing in close proximity little whiffs here and there. Perfumes that pack a sillage punch often overwhelm me really quickly. My husband commented on it after I walked by him though, so it's subtle but noticable.
For me, Arz El-Rab has all the qualities I look for in a fragrance and I'm absolutely upgrading to a full size bottle ASAP! And it will likely become my new signature during the fall/winter months (when I think this type of scent will really shine the most!)
The opening of the fragrance hits me with a spicy citrus and is anchored by a warm woody smell. There is a bit of floral in the middle but it doesn't smell too airy. It's bright but cozy. A perfect Autumn or Winter day scent.
This scent reminds me a lot of Comme De Garcon Wonderwood.
I am working through a "Grands Crus" sample collection from Berdoues and tried this one today. (Disclaimer: my nose is still trying to understand ginger as a note). This comes off as very citrusy to my nose. A few minutes into drydown it smells a bit leathery. In fact, I don't get the wood notes up front at all. I am surprised as I was expecting some of the cedar to shine through...hoping actually as it is winter and I am craving a good wood fragrance. I will try this one out again before the month is over, but so far a like only, not a love. Rather safe and uninteresting.
Vanilla panda11/16/18 03:37
Leathery iris all along, which spiciness reminds me of coriander corns.
Although I loathe iris, I find its interpretation and combination with ginger and cedar truly beautiful.
Rembrandt Q Einstein08/09/18 16:20
Arz El-Rab is the standout from the Berdoues Grand Cru collection. The note list is simple, but the fragrance is anything but. The Ginger note has just enough heft to help the Cedar transcend the typical clichés that accompany it—this is miles away from hamster cage shavings or clothes closet liners. Arz El-Rab is a three season scent, appropriate for all but the coldest weather. Longevity is 4-6 hours with modest sillage. I love wearing this to work—it’s discreet enough for me to fly under the scent-police radar, but unique enough for me to be continually pleased every time I catch it in the air. Not a compliment monster, but the only person who matters—my girlfriend—absolutely loves it. Definitely worth getting your nose on this!
Intriguing and unusual triad of ginger, iris and cedar, with a really distinctive first burst where fresh juicy ginger root plays exceptionally nicely with the floral side. Bit on the masculine side for me, but still strongly original. Sadly this lovely mix is as evanescent as the rest of the frustratingly shortlived Berdoues Grands Crus, and within an hour or so it morphs into a plain - if exceptionally sweet and powdery - cedar scent.
But wait! Weirdly, that cedar really hangs in there like a champ, although discreetly - for up to 10h on me - and somehow magically becomes more sweeter and more unisex. Bit of a confusing experimental road to two entirely different destinations, then, but definitely worth a sniff to explore if (like me) you have trouble finding the sort of iris and/ or cedar that works best for you. Would work well for a guy seeking something discreet yet distinctive. Well overpriced at full retail though.
I was curious about a fragrance with Ginger as one of the three main notes, and felt cautious about the Cedar. Arz el-rab opens with a refreshing and sugary ginger, versus a gingerbread, gourmand ginger. The ginger disappears quickly--too quickly, and then the cedar remains as the overwhelming presence from that point on. An incense- sweet, expensive-smelling pencil. I cannot detect any particular flower, iris or not. I guess the Iris note is what softens the shavings without drawing attention to itself. Liking what they have done in at least half of the scents in the Collection Grands Crus I got from Sephora, I wonder how it would smell if a wood other than cedar is used.
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