Aoud Amber Rose by Montale

Year: 2010

Notes: grapefruit, saffron, Nepalese rose, amber, oud, Indonesian teak, cedar, guaiac wood, precious woods, white musk
With so many renditions of the rose-oud theme, was there really any need for Montale to release Aoud Amber Rose? Even after testing it, as well as the issue of personal tastes, one has reached the conclusion that this is very much a rhetorical question.

Starting with a high-pitched oud note, it quickly becomes apparent that Aoud Amber Rose is nothing more than a re-mixed version of Aoud Lime. No, there's no iris lurking around (to help convey the olfactory illusion of lime) and nor are the woods employed exactly the same. However, the spirit of Aoud Lime is evidently present in this offering.

Along with the noticeable presence of saffron and a metallic rose accord, it's largely Aoud Lime but with more emphasis on the amber. Where this note is rather subdued in Aoud Lime, it flourishes just as evidently as the rose. Aoud Amber Rose is also fuller bodied, in contrast to Aoud Lime's more bracing qualities, with a typical Montale woody drydown.

Aoud Amber Rose presents another welcome alternative to the brash and more masculine Aoud Lime. It's also slightly sweeter and may, as a result, prove to be a suitable alternative for female fragrance lovers. That's not to say it's more feminine (well, that's if one doesn't pay much attention to the tacky and distasteful metallic pink bottle) because it's unquestionably unisex.

With impressive projection and very good lasting power, it harks back to Montale's golden years with panache. However, this house can only rely on its past achievements so many times, while punctuated by the release of a slew of mediocre releases.

Caught between the devil and the deep blue sea, something soon has to give...