ambergris!

It’s here, it finally came! From all the way around the world in New Zealand to our little village in the Alps. Ah! It’s Christmas already!

4.4 generous grams arrived in the mail and once I tore the padded envelope open I could smell the odour rise to caress my nostrils.  Honestly, that’s what it felt like.

When I opened the package I stood there holding them reverently, in awe that what I had in my hand was more costly than gold; that in the world of perfumery this ingredient is sublime and has cult status.

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In the close up shot you can see they very much resemble pumice stones, very porous and flaky.

I ordered the white variety, apparently it’s superior, with a mellow and fine odour, extremely subtle and seductive, with a very light fragrance.  What I get is a very dry, slightly fecal, animalic smell but compelling, addictive almost as I found myself leaning in for a sniff every few minutes.  It also has a delicate sweetness about it, even sort of “moth-bally”. But even with all that it is never off putting, I never found myself recoiling in disgust.

Anyhow, after taking my photos, I wrapped the pieces in a large piece of wax paper, folded it many times and began bashing it with a meat tenderiser.  I then emptied it into a bottle via a funnel and then covered it with 1 Lr of grain alcohol, labeled it and voilà! My very first ambergris tincture! The tincture photo displays the heavier pieces that have fallen to the bottom the lighter ones are floating around the alcohol in suspension.  Eventually, after much waiting, anywhere between 12-48 months, I’ll filter and store it.

Now I don’t have to buy from anyone else, I can use my own tincture and experiment to my heart’s content because a drop or two can be all you need.  I am however planning my next purchase: silver, grey and golden ambergris!

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4 thoughts on “ambergris!

    1. Hello Kerry. Trust me no need to be jealous, here in Italy it’s near impossible for a small perfumer to branch out. I guess each of our countries creates the challenges we need to inspire us to bloom no matter what the conditions, finding a way around, through, under, over — whatever, is part of what makes our perfumes stand out. There are things you have in Australia I’ll never be able to get here :). Have a great holiday season!

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