Guerlain’s Coriolan (1998)

Guerlain Coriolan, 100ml, EDT
© Victor Wong

A Hero’s Second Chance

Released in 1998 by Guerlain, Cariolan (the name of a legendary Roman general), was a “flop”. I didn’t care about perfumes back then, therefore I didn’t hear the sound of him landing face down on the ground.

He got revived, changed nationality from Roman to French, got a new name “L’Âme d’Un Héros”, and given a new modern suit that looks like a wooden box with two sides missing. Now it costs $275 instead of $80, standing side to side with Lupin and Derby.

The important thing to me about this perfume, is its oakmoss basenote. I need to know if oakmoss had already been banned in 1998. If it didn’t, then I am smelling real oakmoss? That’s pretty awesome (I believe I am smelling real oak moss here).


Bulgari’s Black (1998)

Bvlgari Black 75ml
© Victor Wong

I suggest people getting a bottle of Bvlgari Black for their perfume collection before they vanish completely in the market. It is a very unusual perfume.

I bring a different bottle to work almost every week for “show and tell” and the coworker sitting in front of me, who has a very specific taste, (or I should say, a very limited palette for perfume. His fav is Lacoste’s Generic EDT) takes a sniff, and shakes his head and says, “Not for me.”

One day I brought in Bvlgari Black and he instantly liked it. (To my surprise.) His father owned a metal workshop, and when he was a kid, he frequented that place and remembered the smell of oil for machine parts lubrication fondly. And not to mention that he is a cycling nuts, who loves the smell of rubber tires.

He asked me if he could borrow it and bring it home and ASK FOR HIS GIRLFRIEND’S APPROVAL. I asked, “Does your girlfriend ask you for approval when she gets a new perfume?” Well, we all know the answer. (Anyway, her favourite is Flowerbomb, which my coworker doesn’t like.)

Long story short, they both love it, and he is heading to the discounted perfume shop that I go to all the time to get a bottle. I told him to ask for a tester bottle because that could save him 10 bucks as he totally doesn’t care about packaging. Sometimes I feel like I am living in a totally different planet.