Picture: Cloves, important commodity of Zanzibar,
Photo by ? (cc), Wikimedia commons, some rights reserved
Zanzibar is one of the two first fragrances from the Norwegian perfumehouse DoubleYou founded by Catherine Rösseland 2010. Carherine has her roots in both Norway and in Western Africa as her father derived from Tanzania. Zanzibar mirrors that part of Catherines heritage as the other fragrance, Norvège is inspired of Norway and Catherines origin on her mothers side. Zanzibar and Norvège is intended to be worn separate or layered. The fragrances are created in colaboration with the perfumer Barnabe Fillion and they are said to contain only natural ingredients. The latter I doubt as there is very unusual that a fragrance contains 100 % naturals.The notelist below also supports my argument, since when is "leather" a natural? But there are undoubtly a high precentage of naturals in the blends as:
Sampling Zanzibar I was immediately aware of the clear presence of nautrals by the, to natural perfumes, typical slight sour, compact note. This note is present during the whole dry down but it's in no way repellent, on the contrary it fits the concept. Zanzibar is a warm and spicy perfume, to my nose the clove plays a central role, it reminds me of the smell of the Maja soaps from the house of Myrurgia. In the topnotes of Zanzibar I also smell something reminiscent of the smell of the traditional swedish dish boiled crawfish in dill broth.
As a natural perfume, Zanzibar reminds me of some of the perfumes of Liz Zorn that I have sampled. The typical natural note is present in both lines and overall they convays a similar expression. As I'm not so versed in natural perfumes my references are limited when trying to compare Zanzibar to other perfumes in this genere. But as I like some of Liz Zorns offerings as Grand Canyon and Oud Laquer, which dosen't have that typical smell of naturalperfume. That is also the case with my favourite natural perfumeline La via del Profumo with for instance Mecca Balsam. Compared to that beautiful oriental natural fragrance Zanzibar, even if unusual, has some to catch up. I think that my rating is influnced by the fact that I'm not so used to natural perfumes. I think that someone more in to this genre will appreciate this blend much more than I'm.
Notes: Geranium, clove, leather, oak, siam- and cedar wood, rose, cardamom, black currantbuds, ginger, cinnamon, sandalwood