Health & Grooming | The Reconnoisseur

A niche fragrance that packs a punch

Why is this pungent perfume proving so popular?

A niche fragrance that packs a punch

November 14 2009
Karen Wheeler

Maybe it was the quirky name, the unusual wooden stoppered bottle or the jet-coloured “juice” that attracted me to Black Afgano by niche fragrance brand Nasomatto (30ml, £98). Or perhaps it was because my mole at Liberty told me that they couldn’t stock the shelf fast enough (one woman apparently spent £2,000 on bottles of the dark perfume in one hit). So why is this punchy little fragrance, which is said to have been inspired by hashish, proving so popular? Well, for all the reasons above, and possibly because of its dark, masculine mix of coffee, tobacco and oudh. (Other fragrances in the range include Absinth, Narcotic Venus and China White.)

I can’t claim that it was love at first, second or even third sniff for me, since Black Afgano smells like bonfire mixed with student bedroom. It is, however, perfect for customising or adding an edge to other scents – particularly with single-note florals. I discovered this by chance: to temper its smoky smell, I added a dash of the rose scent on the shelf below and found that it blended brilliantly.

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Perfume, Shopping