Niche Fragrance Magazine

Sample Impressions: Xerjoff’s Dhofar

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I can’t recall where, but I’ve read Dhofar described as a barbershop fragrance for the dark-haired man. Without hesitation, I’d say that this description is spot on. I’ve also read that Dhofar is too conservative, maybe a little boring. But this description is way off.

Dhofar opens with something resembling an exotic (oriental perhaps?) barbershop accord. Imagine walking into a barbershop, with seated men wearing woody citrus fragrances, smelling exotic spices from the bazaar while having your neck powdered after a shave. Combine all of this with a slightly astringent barbershop and an exotic something that I assume is the jatamansi, and you have Dhofar in a nutshell. Literally, a nutshell. There is something warm and comforting in Dhofar that briefly reminds me of the smell of freshly cracked walnut shells. It’s weird, but awesome.

The base includes a glowy, resinous labdanum mixed with a salty ambergris note. The result anchors the fragrance, ensuring that it stands apart from more traditional barbershop fragrances. Moreover, these notes and the addition of carnation ensure that Dhofar reads as both traditional and exotic. Make no mistake: traditional it is, but typical it is not. Despite having these masculine notes, much like Xerjoff’s own Mefisto, Dhofar includes florals that lend a smooth, stylish elegance to the scent, making certain that it is never brash.

Of course (as should be no surprise), with Xerjoff you get quality. I am impressed with the calibre of the ingredients, much like I have been impressed with 1861, Nio, Kobe, Uden, and so on and so forth. The quality from the juice to the bottle is great, and we can leave it at that. Performance is commensurate with the quality, and sillage, projection, and longevity are all at the medium-high range, with distinct and smooth evolution from top notes to base notes.

Would I buy it?: Yes! This is a fragrance that is instantly recognizable as a top quality, unique fragrance. Departing from the traditional lavender/vanilla or green fougere aspects of the barbershop fragrance, Dhofar smells like the Prince of Persia after a bath, a shave, and a spritz of perfume. Great stuff.

The fragrance “Dhofar” by Xerjoff is available at Essenza Nobile.

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