Erato by Brocard

This playful scent aims to evoke the spirit of the dance, it’s a sparkling little number that will have you salivating at the plethora of fruity notes that it contains.

Listed notes

Coriander, lemon, orange, raspberry, strawberry, violet, amber, rosewood, tolu balm, musk, sandalwood, vanilla.

The brand

Brocard are an enigmatic Russian brand who flirt around the edges of the internet and don’t appear to have their own website. You can read more about them on Bloom’s website, or on Fragrantica.

We have previously reviewed (and loved) their zesty lemon offering, Fortune.

The main hook with Brocard is the price. For interesting fragrances they are extremely cheap. They make fantastic stocking fillers or take-a-chance gifts for someone who loves scent, someone who is just getting into scent, or the youthful members of your life who want to express their own style without smelling like they have rolled in one of the high street chain stores.

Erato is Brocard’s collaboration with renowned ‘nose’ Bertrand Duchafour. You can get a glimpse of his impressive back catalogue on Now Smell This. So you see, this is a budget brand that is already setting the bar high in terms of interest.

Top notes

It’s fair to say, right off the bat, that of all the scents we have reviewed recently, this one is one of the more difficult to wrap your nose around. It’s complicated, somehow, problematic, unruly, but at the same time it has this likeable quality about it. It is that grumpy, rebellious teenager that you like because you can see yourself in them.

When you first spray the scent, for a very brief moment, all the individual fruity notes that it contains are discernible, in particular the raspberry, strawberry as well as the violet. Although only fleeting, this highlights one of the issues with fruity scents: if they are too true to the fruit they smell childish and unsophisticated, but if they are too removed from it the consumer goes away disappointed, hoping for a true raspberry smell and actually getting something far more sultry instead.

Whether or not Erato has got the balance right here will ultimately come down to personal preference, but there is a moment right at the start when it really seems as if they are going down the naive path. That is until the coriander kicks in.

Here at The Sniff, we are huge fans of coriander in all its guises and adding it to Erato’s fruit-salad potion is a triumph. It immediately elevates this from the realms of fruity shower gel, to something far more interesting and grown up. The almost-spicy coriander forces the fruit to calm down and retreat a little, it never goes away, but it recedes under the weight of the herb, so it becomes a supporting character rather than the brash main player.

Heart notes

The heart of this scent is definitely more ‘warm’ than ‘juicy’ and it hums off the skin with a vibrant energy. The overall impression in the heart is of a spicy sweetness softened and made more playful with a fruity background.

The violet notes play nicely with the coriander to enhance this sense of warmth and glowing skin, but they are held at a level which never becomes overly dry or very powdery. It’s really hard not to imagine a young woman in her late teens or early 20s dancing at a summer ball when you inhale the heart of this scent. It really has that sense of adolescent charm and curiosity about it.

Base notes

In the base of the scent, as throughout, it’s possible to pick out the individual notes that have been listed. The amber and woods combine to continue that cocooning warmth which radiates delightfully. The scent never becomes dense or resinous, and is sweetened by the touch of vanilla that you get right at the end of an inhale. Of all the facets of the scent, the base was the most easily understood and least problematic part for us.

There’s something almost reminiscent of Play-Doh about this fragrance, and we don’t mean that unkindly. It really is the scent of someone on the cusp of adulthood, holding their youth in one hand, and their grown up responsibilities in the other.

The other stuff

This isn’t a strong fragrance which is very much in keeping with the perfume’s whole vibe. It doesn’t project very far, but it does give your skin a really lovely scent-glow in the way that it radiates.

The longevity of the scent is moderate. When we tested it, it seemed to last into the afternoon before it was gone. Like the time in your life when you are both young and old, it’s fleeting. Given the price point of this scent though, we felt that this was more than fair, and re-applying in the afternoon certainly isn’t going to break the bank.

We felt that this scent would be best suited to the more feminine end of the spectrum and would wear best in the summer months. It felt very much as if a bit of ambient warmth would enhance those coriander and fruity facets. We would suggest it as a daytime into early evening scent as for an evening do it might get a little overpowered.

Buy it

So here’s the big price reveal: 60ml EDP of Erato is going to set you back the vast and princely sum of … £16. Yes, you did read that right. Sixteen pounds for an eau de parfum. At that price you can afford to buy two bottles.

Erato will soon be available from Bloom Perfumery London, who kindly supplied me with a sample of this scent. They are currently taking orders though, so get in touch if you want to be on the list.

 

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