Cabaret Homme 2004 Eau de Toilette

Cabaret Homme (Eau de Toilette) by Grès
Bottle Design Thierry Lecoule
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7.6 / 1022 Ratings
Cabaret Homme (Eau de Toilette) is a popular perfume by Grès for men and was released in 2004. The scent is fougère-woody. It was last marketed by Lalique Group / Art & Fragrance. Pronunciation
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Pierre Bourdon

Fragrance Notes

Top Notes Top NotesPineapplePineapple
Juniper berryJuniper berry
Heart Notes Heart NotesJasmineJasmine
Lily of the valleyLily of the valley
Base Notes Base NotesAmberAmber
Tonka beanTonka bean



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Submitted by DonVanVliet, last update on 03.10.2021.
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Very helpful Review    7  
A cabaret without an audience - Fougére with a washboard stomach
As a surprise, I once received a Cabaret Homme sample that I liked so much that I thought: this textbook fougère scent by Grès deserves a comment more!

Grès was founded in 1942 by Alix Gres as a fashion brand. Her original name was Germaine Krebs (born in 1903), but after the first name of her husband, the Russian painter Serge Czerefkov (egreS, gres, Grès), she decided to carry this name. Alix Gres was initially successful with fashion in Paris. She then came back from a trip to India in 1956 with scent impressions, which, with the help of perfumer Bernard Chant, led to the creation of her own perfume creation called "Cabochard" (Stubborn) in 1959 (and set a new trend "Chypre with Leather"). There's a well-done Cabochard revival from 2019.

In the 1980s she had to sell first the perfume house, then the fashion house (the latter was discontinued). Grès used to belong to Escada in the 90s, but was sold to the Art & Fragrance group in 2001 (Lalique Group). These include Alain Delon, Bentley, Jaguar and Lalique. The listed Lalique Group has its registered office in Zurich.

Cabaret Homme was released in 2004, one year after the women's version was released. The nose behind Cabaret Homme is Pierre Bourdon. His works include Kouros (1981), Green Irish Tweed (1985), Bois de Portugal (1987), Cool Water (1988), Jil Sunder Sun (1989) - all within a decade! Hats off. In 2015 Pierre Bourdon even established his own perfume line with five fragrances.

I would certainly not have thought of testing Cabaret Homme myself. My first impression was: 90s scent! It's not true, but I have this subjective category for certain, clearly masculine scents (often with an after-shave vibe) - regardless of the year of release - such as Percival. But if you look closer - or let's say smell - Cabaret Homme reminds you of the soapy subgenre from the 80s with Drakkar Noir ('82) or Xeryus ('86).

Cabaret Homme is a masterfully balanced fougère fragrance. An olfactory journey from the fruity, soapy masculine top note to the soapy, aromatic-woody drydown. The composition seems so unique to me that I couldn't describe it without taking a look at the scent pyramid. Top note: "Pineapple, basil, bergamot, coriander, rosemary, juniper berry" - yes, I believe all that, the berry-fruity with pineapple is great. Everything is harmoniously balanced, lavender is added and some floral notes. Nothing earth-shattering, but pleasant (sometimes a bit too sweet for me). Warmth and a certain sensuality are there. On the one hand "oldschool man", on the other hand modern and fresh. Durability is average, Sillage is moderate but suitable
It has been explained by experts that although aquatic or ozone notes were dominant in the early 00s, Tom Ford - then at LVMH - revived traditional masculine fragrances/lines. Grès joined this traditional direction with Cabaret Homme. But they also wanted to be modern, which is why they created a commercial with a washboard belly á la Fierce, which had been released shortly before (the commercial is easy to find; I sent it here a week or two ago, but it hasn't been released under the fragrance yet).

Cabaret Homme is a creation for the man who knows what he wants in life and seduction is part of his personality - haha, that's what the marketing nonsense of the women's version was called back then (here transferred to Cabaret Homme). In another forum, someone once unravelled why Cabaret Homme stays so under the radar: For classic Fougére lovers, the fragrance is probably too sweet and modern. But for mainstream tastes looking for an office-safe everyday scent, this creation is all too retro (and the Grès brand is unknown to many men). A cabaret without an audience, so to speak. At first, I put my sample aside until I discovered how unique and retro, yet pleasantly suitable for everyday use, the fragrance is.

There is also Cabaret Homme After Shave, deodorant and shower gel. The flacon design is reminiscent of Must de Cartier (and a red curtain in a classic cabaret). The name? Fits perfectly into the "cab" tradition with Cabochard or Cabotine by Grès.

Cabaret Homme is truly an individual choice. This means that "man" wears a fragrance that is definitely not to be smelled on every corner.
6 Replies

13 Reviews
Very helpful Review    4  
Somewhere between a fougere and an aromatic
Cabaret Homme is quite underrated, although it is hardly groundbreaking. It is somewhere between a textbook lavender/juniper/leather fougere a la Drakkar Noir and a coriander/sandalwood aromatic such as RL Safari or Cartier Pasha. Think of it as a much better Caesar’s Man, or a not-as-good Givenchy Xeryus, and you will get the picture.

Cabaret Homme possesses the baseline quality level you would expect from a Gres fragrance; so, I cannot see it disappoint anybody, even the seasoned aficionado, from a quality perspective. Disappointment, if it happens, would follow from a perceived lack of originality and “wow factor”. Obviously, the more you are familiar with the above listed fragrances, the more likely such a disappointment. For me the one thing that sets it apart from any of the others listed above is a “just right” amount of spiciness, which neither overwhelms, nor gets lost among other aspects/notes.

This would be a great buy at a reasonable price, but at the current (Summer 2017) prices, it is not a competitive buy; especially if you are buying blind.

516 Reviews
Helpful Review    3  
Tsar reloaded
So after YSL came up in 2003 with that fantastic time-machine called Rive Gauche pour Homme, here’s Bourdon composing one year later another decidedly old-school, completely non-fashion fragrance for Grès. The quality isn’t really comparable in my opinion, but neither was the price, as I guess Cabaret was way more cheap; the inspiration though, that was quite similar. Cabaret pour Homme is basically a sort of fruitier, slightly more “contemporary” take on Van Cleef & Arpels' Tsar: that same type of formal aromatic fougère structure, played with a couple of added or, say, “renovated” chords – notably fruits, a floral-green whiff, also something like amber or labdanum “warming” it up a bit, with also a subtle sort of tobacco-incense aftertaste. At once fresher and warmer. Take Tsar and imagine it sweeter, a bit younger and more “informal”. Basically like putting a baseball cap and a Supreme t-shirt on your grandpa. Openly “uncool” and slightly naif: I love that. The quality isn’t really top-notch for me, but it isn’t totally bad either; Cabaret smells nice and versatile, “manly” in a slightly dated way with just a hint of warmth and modern tints.

Also, it has a sort of really well-played feel of “luxury” which is as much fake as enjoyable, like a well-made counterfeit Rolex replica. Actually it’s fascinating as it smells at the same time heavily cheap on some nuances, but somehow the overall look is good and the composition seems clever enough to “disguise” the cheapness. Anyway I can see why this is overlooked, as it sits right in the grey nowhere halfway a classic aromatic fougère and a more modern “office-safe” woody-spicy-fruity-smoky scent for contemporary men; but it’s at once too modern and too sweet for fans of classic fougères, and surely still too outdated for the average contemporary taste. And there’s the “appealing-to-nobody” trap. It’s a shame because it is instead a really decent and enjoyable blend of these two inspirations, which makes you feel wearing something mannered, classy and mature enough but with a more relaxed, playful, less “austere” vibe. Miles away being a creative piece of art or a “compliment getter”, but give it a chance if you stumble upon it.



MatuxMatux 5 months ago
Not very original when it comes to references, Drakar Noir, Lomani and others come to mind, however with a twist: it is truly complex.

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