Roja Dove Extraits and David’s Tea

This will be a bit of a mash today, but bear with me, I’m a little discombobulated.  Just writing about things I like will make me feel better.

This year – so far – has been kinda crappy.  Lovely girlfriend of my oldest son has uterine cancer, and they thought it was Stage III.  Second opinion, they now think it is Stage II. Yeah!!!  Scheduled for surgery this week.  Passes out with pulmonary embolism late last week.  Will be okay, but surgery delayed by six weeks to stabilize her condition.  Okay, that should be enough for only being two months into the year, right?  Nope.  Brother who does not have esophageal cancer (that one is back in chemo post-surgery) has a heart attack this weekend.  This after third brother thinks he is having one, but turns out not, they just don’t know what’s wrong with him.  Heart attack is caught early, stented, and he’ll be fine.  This is the age we all start to fall apart by family history – mid to late 50s.   And what we know is it is genetics. All of my brothers are physically active, exercise, work hard, and all the same things that hit my smoking, drinking, hard-living dad and his brothers at about the same age are happening to them.  Crazy.

My low back is giving me fits, so I’m writing this all propped with pillows under my knees, etc. full of Motrin – that explains some of the discombobulation.  If it’s better tomorrow, I see a week of yoga in my future to get my hammies all stretched out properly.

But you know what is making me happy while I’m all propped up and sleeping through mega Motrin doses today?  David’s Tea.  I’m normally a no-frills coffee drinker and my only foray into floofy flavored coffee or tea has been Mariage Frere Butterscotch Tea and their Christmas Noel tea.  The David’s Tea was a happy accident. I get a monthly knitting subscription through Knitcrate.  You can get beginner, advanced, sock crate, etc. and tucked in every package are some goodies.  February had a small packet of David’s Tea, Read My Lips, with chocolate, peppermint and red lip candies.  I brewed them up in my fabulous Breville tea brewer, just because, you know, it was free and I was sure I’d hate it and then wind up sending it to Ann. 🙂  The smells that percolated through my house were unbelievable, and it lasted the entire day. I quickly went through my small sample packet and had to order to Canada for more, only to wait and wait and wait for a whole week for my fix to arrive.  Now I’m sipping on Chocolate Rocket, a mate with cocoa, almonds, raspberries and chicory and am just swooning.  Tomorrow I brew up a sample of their new spring tea, Peaches and cream, an herbal tea with peaches, apple and vanilla.  I’m hoping they also sent some of the Cool Cucumber (pawing through the box). Black tea with cucumber slices!  If you can’t find a flavored tea at David’s to make you happy, you didn’t look hard enough.  Other than that week wait to arrive from Canada  – yes,I’m a spoiled child – these are amazing and are my new favorite tea vendor.  They do have stores in San Francisco, Chicago and Brooklyn, none of which are close to me. They should consider a Denver store pronto.

We’ve covered knitting and tea. Some days, the extent of my Old Lady hobbies cracks me up.

But you came here for the perfume, and my little treasures arrived. Roja Dove Gardenia extrait, Roja Dove Vetiver extrait and Roja Dove Fetish.  I’m not always the perfect Roja Dove customer.  He skews to a vintage taste that I admire, but typically don’t wear that much.

Roja Dove Gardenia isn’t all bleu cheesy gardenia. It’s a more upscale gardenia, fully fluffed out of the most stinky elements, but retaining a gardenia perfume sensibility.  I’m not sure how he walks that line so well.  It’s not a Chanel Gardenia that isn’t really gardenia, it’s a more robust scent and incredibly elegant.  For a soliflore, it’s not that soliflore since several other notes combine to give the gardenia-like scent.  It hits a lot closer than the Chanel does. but it is a coolish gardenia, but with some warmth around the edges.   I really love it, there is a perfect place in my gardenia perfume collection for it.  If you must have the gardenia reality, this probably won’t do it for you, but if you’re on board with a great blend that’s gardenia with superpowers, Roja Dove Gardenia Extrait will work for you.

Roja Dove Vetiver Extrait is an amazing vetiver.  Notes of bergamot, lemon, jasmine, rose. caraway, cedar, celery, galbanum, guaiac wood, litsea cubeba, nutmeg, oakmoss, pepper, labdanum and vetiver.  It has all the refinement of a Roja Dove scent, but the vetiver in this is not tamped down or restrained. It punches you with a kiss right in the nose. That’s a great thing!  It doesn’t feel raw, though, like some vetivers, that are all grass and earth.  This has that element, but blends the other notes in beautifully to soften enough edges that you can wear it without anyone wondering who is mowing or harvesting in the office.  If you love vetiver, man or woman, this is glorious vetiver.

Roja Dove Fetish (not Pour Homme, this is the femme) falls in line with that classic feel Roja expresses – Guerlain-esque leather chypre. It is heavy on the galbanum and oakmoss. Notes are bergamot, jasmine, rose, tuberose, ylang, castoreum, cedar, cinnamon, clove galbanum, musk, oakmoss, patchouli, and vetiver.  Kafkaesque did a lengthy, in-depth review on the EDP.  I’m not sure how the strengths differ, but Kafkaesque did not get much leather.  I get a wallop of green leather, if such a thing exists.  Leather’ish notes tend to amp on my skin, so whatever combo of notes used to get leather are working well on my leather-projecting skin.  which would be great if I were a big leather perfume fan.  This feels a Lot like Guerlain Djedi on me. Not a dry, not like the desert Djedi becomes. A less arid Djedi maybe.  It’s not exactly the same, but there are similarities.  That comparison just hit me, now I have to test it.  Yeah, Djedi is way more fierce and dry and barren, while Fetish is plumper with a wee more florality and spice. They are interesting to smell side by side. Clearly some of the materials in Djedi can’t be used anymore – likely lethal things that could kill us! – but they feel in the same family for me. Again, grain of salt, I amp leather-like notes like crazy, part of the reason I don’t do leather perfumes, I will wipe out entire households when I visit if I have one on.

So!  Last week I didn’t draw, but Ill use last week’s post and drawing for some samples of the lovelies and this week and do two from each post to get samples of these three perfumes as well as a wee bit of David’s tea – enough to brew a cuppa.  Have you tried any of the Rojas? Like them, love them, hate them?  Want to try?

  • d3m0lici0n says:

    I’d love to try the Extraits, I have and love Fetish pour Homme on the EdP concentration. Really good stuff, I am looking at the Davids Tea right now, I love tea and I will be ordering some too, looks really cool. Thanks!

  • Tiara says:

    Life packs quite the punch some days. So many events in such a short span of time — yikes!

    My son loves the Malle Vetiver. Wonder how the Roja compares. Haven’t explored ANY of this line. Have had a couple on my sample list but when it comes time to actually make the purchase, I haven’t included them and I’m not sure why.

    And old lady hobbies — need to share that one with my tea-loving knitting friend!

  • Mariekel says:

    Hey Patty — I am so sorry you are going through so much. I admire Roja Dove’s perfumes so far more than loving them. They are all well constructed and thought out, but something just seems to be missing for me. Diaghilev has come the closest, but there is some note in there that makes me just the smallest bit queasy. Just as well, given the price tag and exclusivity!

    Please take good care, hon.

  • Audrey says:

    Feel better and I would love to experience Roja Dove!

  • kizzers says:

    Hi, Patty. I’m wishing you and your nearest and dearest healthier and happier days ahead. Those David’s Teas sound amazing, some research is required 🙂 I haven’t had much experience with Roja Dove, but a decant order is long overdue so I may add a few to the wishlist – that leather sounds right up my alley.

  • Solanace says:

    Patty, you bring us so much light when we are facing these awful bits of life that are just too much for simple humans, I’m here wishing with all my heart that everything will get better for you and yours real soon. Roja Dove strikes me as super expensive, but I must admit the retro aesthetics of his line is very appealing to me.

  • Kandice says:

    Patty – I’m so sorry about your family’s struggles. I hope everyone comes out of everything OK.

    I would be very happy to have the chance to try the Roja Dove scents as I’ve never tried any of their perfumes. Thanks for your generous offer. However, the thing I’d REALLY love to try are the teas! I love tea (and coffee) and these sound great. Now I’m going to have to search them out and order some, darn it! Thanks for sharing them 🙂

  • Darryl says:

    Canadian and fellow David’s Tea addict here. I’m more of a coffee drinker overall, but there are times when nothing but tea will do. David’s flavoured teas are great fun, but they also happen to carry the best lapsang souchong I’ve ever had. Totally raw and smoky aroma, counterintuitively smooth and non-bitter flavour. Goes down like a treat. I have to force myself not to buy it every time I pass by the store in the mall.

  • peppermoon says:

    I’d love to try some Roja Dove, but I haven’t sampled any yet. I’m sorry that you’re having a rough time lately. Knitting and tea are relaxing hobbies to have, so they should help. After a bad day, I take a hot bath, put on my fluffiest slippers and have a cup of decaf tea – makes me feel a lot better.

  • Sarah K says:

    That is an awful lot of really crappy stuff to be happening to you and your loved ones 🙁 I’m wishing you all the continued strength to get through it.

    I mostly love the ‘vintage’ aesthetic running through Roja Dove’s work, though I do wonder if it’s a good thing that the first thing I find myself doing whenever I sample his work is to think what older (less expensive) fragrance it reminds me of. Some of his stuff is so wonderfully opulent and evocative though that I’m just grateful for my decants and a lot of the time I actually prefer the less rich (and less expensive) EDP over the extrait. Not everything he does is anywhere near worth the price for me though: the Gardenia and Lilac extraits didn’t really impress me for the price they are sold at and the first thought I had when I tried Scandal EDP was that it reminded me of Estee Lauder’s Beautiful. Not that I have done a wrist-to-wrist comparison, but that was the olfactory memory! It’s a lovely scent, but so is Beautiful. And Beautiful is rather easier to obtain.

  • Jackie b says:

    Best wishes for Everyone to get well soon.
    Like many others here, I find the prices of Roja Dove prohibitive and have never sampled any. Would love to though, and hope maybe to get to the Haute Perfumerie when I visit London in June…Leave credit card at home.

    • Ann says:

      Oooh — lucky you, Jackie! What a great trip. And I love your line “Leave credit card at home.” Though it’s easier said than done, I fear. 🙂

  • Mary K says:

    So sorry to hear about all of the health issues that your family members are dealing with. Things just have to turn around and get better for the rest of the year! And I hope your back starts feeling better, too. The tea sounds amazing, and I think the Roja Dove Vetiver especially would be great.

  • einsof says:

    i’m going to tell you what i tell my dearest friends when they are going through a patch of darkness: STOP IT! wha- wha-what? I SAID KNOCK IT OFF. and then we fall into a fit of laughter, and then i remind them HEY, AT LEAST YOU DON’T LIVE IN WYOMING. (are you laughing yet or are you crossing my name off every chrismakwanzaachannukah list ever?) either way, i bet you forgot for at least a millisecond. 🙂 i truly am wishing for quicksilver healing! <3

    Roja… never tried them. again, just dipping my toe into the synth world of late.. but you, know, anything with the word "fetish" in it is intriguing. perfume-wise i mean. PLEASE do not send me your copies of '50 Shades of Grey'. or anything from Twilight. *giggle*

    ok, and so if none of that made you smile, how about: what did the 0 zero say to the eight? Where'd you get that belt?! (ba-dum CHING!)

  • Elena says:

    That really is a whole mess of bad luck. I’m hoping for the best for you and yours. It is scary to start to get into “that age” when these things seem to happen to friends and relatives very regularly. Aging isn’t always the most fun, but it sure beats the alternative.

  • Fabio says:

    I am so sorry to hear about your family and friend and I hope that everyone makes a speedy recovery (you too of course)

    The vetiver scent sounds beautiful and I would love to try it

  • katrin says:

    My very best wishes to you and your family! I hope things will work out for you and those around you who are in pain. Knitting is what has helped me when times are hard and of course, perfume. I haven’t tried any of Roja Doves, they sound luxurious!

  • xtopher says:

    God! what happens with our lives lately. I hope things get better on your end.
    That peaches and cream tea sounds perfectly inviting, specially when it is so darn ugly and cold outside. Roja Dova is on of those brands is always on my radar but after I lost my source of income I actually haven’t even attempted to sample them. Vetiver and Fetish sounds right up my alley!

  • helical gnome says:

    I am sorry to hear 2014 has been so bitter to you and your loved ones. Here in my home things were not much better. The body sometimes runs rampant. I am tired too!
    Have you tried the “my pillow”? I sleep with 4 pillows. I know it sounds crazy but otherwise my back hurts and I just cannot walk.
    I have never sniffed Roja Dove’s mainly because of the prices which are way outside, above, and beyond my budget.

  • wefadetogray says:

    When are things going to get better!! I totally feel for you. My 2013 was a nightmare and the health issues have extended well into 2014.
    I haven’t tried any Roja Dove perfume. I read the post Kafka made and it left me extremely tempted. Now this gardenia, Patty!!! I love, love, love gardenia.
    Thanks for the draw!

  • I’ve only tried one of Roja Dove’s scents so far, and that is Enigma Pour Homme, which I got a 5ml decant of in a split. It was a blind buy, and I like it but I don’t love it. It kind of reminds me of a boozy Tobacco Vanille sometimes, and Ambre Narguile at other times. But I like both of those better, and expensive as they are, they’re both more affordable. But it’s only 5ml so not really a big deal. I’m considering whether I want to keep it for a while longer in case I change my mind on it, or set it aside for NST’s swap meet coming up in a couple weeks.

  • Hi Patty, I’m so sorry to hear of what you are going through, sending love & light your way. I can totally relate, my mom had a stroke and a heart attack this past Valentines Day, she’s in VT and I’m in CO. Fortunately my sister is also in VT so she can have one-on-one family support for the duration of her recovery process. It is hard to stare mortality straight in the eyes where your loved ones are concerned.

    I am a big tea lover and create custom black tea blends so I can bring different nuances to my cuppa. I have not tried the David’s tea and am so excited to find another wonderful brand to sample. Though I’m not sure my tea cupboard can handle one more box (yes, I have one whole cupboard full of just teas and more in the pantry too;-) I have always thought teas were like a perfume you could drink; the ones that are well designed and balanced have many of the same characteristics.

    I am also curious to smell the RD fragrances. I have not tried these yet so can’t comment much but can offer that I’m a big fan of the vintage style and LOVE leather and green scents. Thank you for the draw and for continuing to post, know you are cared for and supported in spirit by those who read it.

  • Lynne says:

    Patty, you and your family are in my thoughts and I’m sending strength, health and energy to all of you! May you all get what you need, when you need it and in the way you need it! I’ve never trued any Roja Dove scents but I just ordered samples of Diagheliv and Nuwa, so I’ll be diving in shortly – I’m been watching others rave over just how GOOD and well made these scents are, can’t wait!

  • Very best wishes to your family, Patty. My mother-in-law has been flying back and forth to Toronto about every six weeks because her mother is very sick, and one very small good consequence is that is the absolute piles of David’s tea she imports for herself and us when she does. I wholeheartedly recommend the creme caramel roobios, which is really rich enough to deserve its name, and the honeybee mate, which combines lemon and honey blossoms, so it’s more floral than the usual honey-lemon combination. They’re all good!

  • Dina C. says:

    Patty, I’m so sorry to hear about the serious health problems that are dogging your loved ones. What an anxiety-producing, stressful time. No wonder your back is spasming in sympathetic anguish! I hope that each thing resolves happily, and I’ll be lifting you up in my thoughts and prayers.

    As for the tea and perfume…the teas sound wonderful. I’m a big tea drinker year round. I enjoyed jasmine green tea this morning. I loved the Tea Shop mysteries by Laura Child. They are fun, cozy mysteries set in Charleston, and they include recipes and wonderful descriptions of Charleston and places in South Carolina.

    I haven’t sniffed any of the Roja Dove scents yet. The word “galbanum” made my ears perk up, so both the Vetiver and Fetish sound like things I need to try. I’d love to be entered in a drawing. Thanks Patty!

  • jirish says:

    So sorry to hear about what your family and you are going through. And, reading the comments, it seems like a lot of us have had a rough year or so. Here’s hoping that the near future shows signs of improvement – this dreadful winter of the soul can’t last forever, right? And let’s gather the things the sustain us – beautiful scents, our teas, our hobbies, the books, tv shows, and films that can help us temporarily escape – close around us. Haven’t tried any Roja Doves yet, but Fetish sounds promising to me.

  • Bastet says:

    Best wishes to your and family!

    I have never tried any Roja Dove fragrances, but would love to!

  • poodle says:

    I can totally relate to having family troubles. 2013 was a pretty craptacular year for me and 2014 has the potential to be similar unfortunately. Sorry to hear about your back pain. That’s the worst. I hope you can stretch things out soon and get some relief. In the meantime, enjoy the tea and your knitting.
    I’ve tried a few Roja Dove perfumes but none of them were very memorable to me. I’d be willing to give them another try because I think I may have been suffering a bit of olfactory fatigue when I sniffed them.

  • Tena says:

    I am saddened to hear about the stress your family is going through. I hope that some of our Canadian Tea helps to make things a bit better – try the spearmint – it is amazing !!!
    I have not tried any of this line, but would love to.

  • jilliecat says:

    As someone once said (was it dear Oscar?) “Youth is wasted on the young”. Before we get to a certain age we live in blissful ignorance of pain, illness and loss, then suddenly – just as we have less strength and optimism to deal with all that life throws at us – everything seems to go wrong. It’s so hard, but it’s wonderful that there are little pleasures to enjoy, like wonderful perfume and tea. And I guess we have wisdom that we didn’t possess when we were young, so perhaps that helps us to cope. Get better soon, and happy sipping.

  • Sherri says:

    Wow, what a harrowing year so far! I surely do hope and pray your March is much, much better. I have tried some of the RD’s. I bought one of the last three-fragrance sets at BG, with Enslaved, Danger and Unslpoken. (They have discontinued those sets, btw).

    I loved Gardenia, which was actually a complex Spring floral, as far as I’m concerned. Lilac is lovely, but really only a soliflore, and, perfect as it is, it does not smell all that different from Pacific French Lilac (i.e. $9.99 v. $435). Fetish is gorgeous, and I also get alot of leather. Never smelled Djedi so I can’t compare (tho I do get the old Guerlain vibe). To me it’s a leathery Jubilation 25 or vintage Femme. Risque was the one dh loved, so I’ll have to put that on my “retry” list, but honestly, they are priced so crazy high, I think a decant will be fine. The good news it I didn’t feel one bit guilty chosing Xerjoff Ibitira as my bottle of the month! $260 instead of $435?? Oh the money I am saving this month…lol!

    Feel better, sweet lady! I’ll keep those family members in my prayers. Maybe you can go back to the ancient calendar and make April the start of a new year for you!

  • Smy says:

    I haven’t tried any Roja Dove perfumes due to their prices but I would live to, especially the Gardenia!

  • zazie says:

    I’m so sorry about the issues your loved ones are facing at the moment.
    2013 and 2014 (yes I know, it has just begun!) have been/are that kind of years for me too. I hate it!
    I am so not zen in facing these *issues*: I get so angry that I’ve been showing my fist to the skyes for the last 14 months, and my arm hurts! 😉
    yes, I do yoga – but it works for my body only. I guess my anger fuels me?
    But perfume works for my soul, cheesy and stupid as it sounds.
    Catching a whiff of a loved perfume has really brought me comfort in the crappiest situations!
    I’d love to try the gardenia and the green leather thingies.
    I’m a sucker for white florals! And I love my complicated relationship with leather!
    Roja Dove intrigues me, maybe because it is one of the few perfumers that I never had the chance o smell!

    I wish all the best for you and your love ones – take care!

  • Elia says:

    Sorry to hear about all the health problems. I hope for the best!
    I think Roja is a great perfumer. I like a few of his creations. The Vetiver extrait is indeed a gorgeous thing and one day, I’ll treat myself to a bottle.

  • thinkingmagpie says:

    I’m so sorry to hear what’s been happening to you & your family. Sometimes crap does find its way into your life.. Wear your favourite perfume, sip some gorgeous tea & knit, every little bit of something pleasurable help you go through the tough time…I’ve never tried any of the Roja Dove fragrances and I’d love to. But, to be honest, having read your post on David’s Tea, I’m more interested in the heavenly sounding selections of tea!!

  • Gentiana says:

    I am so very sorry for your hard weeks and all the troubles! I had something similar in the family in the not-so-far-past… and it is so bad… it literally eats up one’s energy… Combine it with bad times in the job… and it is close to collapse.
    You know something? Perfumes kept me alive and in motion! My hobby for fragrances smoothed the rough edges of life, helped me to soothe and sleep at night and cheer up in the morning. And reading your blog and other perfume blogs helped me to escape from the ugly reality.
    Wish you and your family all the best, health and hope. I send you all my best thoughts.
    I didn’t try any of the Roja Dove perfumes, they are imported to Romania only since November or so, and I didn’t take the time to travel 100 miles to Bucharest to smell them.
    I am keen to smell them all and I will be very lucky and happy to win the draw.

  • Best wishes for your family! I just ordered (and anxiously await) Risque and Fetish. In a few weeks I want to put together a little sampler of gardenia fragrances for my mom – she is like the gardenia whisperer (you know those little gardenia bushes you get at the super market that last about three weeks? She grows them to the size of those bean bag chairs everybody thought they wanted in the ’90s) & I want to include the Rojas Dove Gardenia fragrance for her.

  • Scott says:

    I wore the Vetiver Extrait all day today, and completely agree with your review. This is a glorious vetiver. Reminds me a little of the Guerlain and pre-reform Carven, but it’s rounder, fully, more lush. Not astringent. Wears fairly close to the skin. And so masterfully blended like all of his work. I think it is the new reference vetiver (sorry Geurlain!).

  • spiker says:

    I’m so sorry to hear of all your family’s troubles. I wish you and yours good luck and good health as we move out of winter and into spring.

  • Nemo says:

    I’m so sorry to hear things are not going well for your family and your back. I hope things start looking up soon! It is amazing how much little things (like amazing tea, or a drop or perfume) can help keep you going in the rough times. I have not tried anything from Roja Dove, but I am fascinated by the celery note in the Vetiver extrait (can you smell the celery??) I hope the yoga helps, too!

  • Ann says:

    Hi, sweetie — so sorry to hear about all the stuff going on; will be keeping all of you in my thoughts and prayers. And I hope your back is doing better; back pain is the worst (and Anita will agree, I’m sure). BTW, I remember trying a few David’s teas years ago on my annual Mom’s week out to San Francisco (pre-layoff, of course), and liked them, but it sounds like they’ve really got some va-va-voom flavors now — yum! So am I the (Life cereal) “Give it to Mikey, he’ll eat anything” of tea now? 🙂

  • Erika says:

    I haven’t tried any of the Rojas but they are on my list. Thanks for the post – take care!

  • FeralJasmine says:

    I am so sorry that your family is going through all this. 2013 was like that for mine, and I know the feeling of multiple loved ones in peril. It sucks. All the vest to you and yours. I have tried the RD Gardenia, and at the time was disappointed that it wasn’t more realistic. I’m going to retry it.