This September sees the launch of new Trade Routes Collection from perfumers Penhaligon’s and I recently headed to the 34th floor of the Shard in London to sniff them out.This new collection is made up of three different scents; Lothair, Empressa and Levanthium and they have all been inspired by ‘..the luxurious and decadent commodities which were traded through London’s historic docks at the turn of the 19th Century.
Lothair Lothair was inspired by the tea trading ships that brought tea, spices and other exotic good back to Britain from around the world. There’s a distinct hit of citrus from the grapefruit softened by the fig leaf and lavender and then undertones of wood and leather. This is an altogether warming scent and comforting scent that very much encapsulates both the ship and its cargo.
Top Notes: Red Berries, Juniper Berry, Cardamom, Bergamot, Grapefruit, Fig Leaf
Heart Notes: Fig Milk, Lavender, Magnolia, Geranium, Black Tea
Base Notes: Vanilla, Musks, Cedarwood, Ambergris, Wenge,
Oakmoss Perfumer: Bertrand Duchaufour
EmpEmpressa takes its queues from the pearls, silks and fine fabrics that came to London to adorn the wealthy and influential ladies of the time. This scent has patchouli in it, but is balanced really well with pink pepper, blood orange and peach to name just a few. Sometimes patchouli can be a little overpowering, but this scent is perfectly blended to give all the positives of the scent without the punch in the nose. This is great for both day or night and is quite possibly my favourite of the three.
Top Notes: Blood Orange, Bergamot, Mandarin
Heart Notes: Peach, Cassis, Dewberry, Rose, Neroli, Geranium, Cadamon, Pink Pepper, Black Pepper
Base Notes: Vanilla Pod, Cocoa, Frankincense, Amber, Musk, Woods, Patchouli, Sandalwood, MaltolPerfumer: Mike Parrott
LevLevantium found its inspiration in the piles of rum, spices, flowers, woods and resins that would have been stacked up in the warehouses of London. This is certainly a warm, woody scent that envelopes you in eastern woods and spices like a shot of whiskey on a winter night. Possibly more suited to being an evening scent, Levantium is a spiced, wood scent that has a warm floral heart rather than the harsh, dry scent that can often accompany the heavier notes.
Top Notes: Bergamot, Davana, Saffron, Absinthe
Heart Notes: Rose, Jasmine, Violet, Clove, Cardamon, Ylang Ylang, Peach
Base Notes: Amber, Myrrh, Guaiacwood, Sandalwood, Cedarwood, Oud, Patcholi, Musk, Maltol, VanillaPerfumer: Christian de Provenzano
As with any scent, it’s always best to go and sniff it out for yourself and give it some time to settle on the skin to see if you like it, before you buy it. You can investigate the Trade Routes Collection in Penhaligon’s stores and online from September 1st. All three scents are £120 for a beautiful 100ml bottle.