It goes without saying that Tom Ford is my hero, and yes, I follow his style and grooming trends religiously. My cologne collection is substantial, however, the top shelf has become dominated by everything Tom Ford (something of a homage to his brilliance) – and I was very happy to now include the two new private blend creations – the Mandarino di Amalfi and the Costa Azzurra. These, in my humble opinion, are the two quintessential fragrances that every scent loving man should have for Summer 2014.  

Tom Ford's latest editions to the Private Blend range, just in time for Summer 2014.

Tom Ford’s latest editions to the Private Blend range, just in time for Summer 2014.


These two are from the Private Blend collection of fragrances / perfumes created under the watchful eye of Tom Ford, and are in compliment to the wildly successful Neroli Portofino launched a while ago. All three take their initial create direction from the scents of the Summer European coastline, dominated by strong floral and or citrus notes, making them undeniably favourites for those wanting a full Summer experience (like me, when in Cape Town, over the festive season break).

To start off with, the Mandarino di Amalfi is an intensely fresh citrus fragrance, with very noticeable top notes of mint, grapefruit and lemon, followed by tarragon, black currant and basil. Once this dies down, the middle notes are dominated by orange blossom and jasmine with elements of black pepper, coriander, clary sage and shiso; while the base notes are vetiver, amber, labdanum, musk and civet. All round, once applied, be prepared for people to say, “Wow, you smell fresh! Wanna get fresh with me?”.

Similarly to the Mandarino di Amalfi, the Costa Azzurra can also be classified within the fresh range of Summer fragrances, however the Costa Azzurra is more of a sea-inspired woody fragrance. It takes inspiration from the scents you would experience wondering through the forest areas on the European coast – so expect top notes of seaweed, driftwood, agarwood ( also known as oud wood), ambrette (musk mallow), celery seeds and cardamom; middle notes are juniper, myrtle, lavender, lemon, yellow mandarin and artemisia; base notes are mastic or lentisque, olibanum, incense, vanilla, vetiver and oak. Its one of those fragrances that you would expect Aquaman to apply before walking out the ocean to have his way with a few women on a secluded private European beach.

Now, both of these are now available in South Africa through the Tom Ford counters in Stuttafords and retail for around the ZAR2000 mark for the 50ml. Yip, it may be a steep price to pay – around R40 per ml – and since, on average, there are about 8 sprays per ml, then they cost around ZAR5 per squirt. Looking at this that way – WELL WORTH IT!

And, while I do like to take my own pictures for this site, Tom Ford’s campaign images are always so entertaining, and retro-captivating. Enjoy.