As Halloween casts its spell, we check out Beaufort London, creator of dark and sensual fragrances perfect for the witching hour...
BY AMY BRADFORD
Drummer turned perfumer Leo Crabtree has unveiled his avant-garde scent label Beaufort London. The flamboyantly suited and bearded musician has loved fragrance all his life, and drew on his fascination with the darker aspects of British history, the nation’s nautical heritage and his own childhood living on a boat on the River Thames when creating the ‘Come Hell or High Water’ collection. Its scents are compelling and highly unusual, and at times not for the faint hearted. ‘1805 Tonnerre’ is an olfactory incarnation of the Battle of Trafalgar, notes of smoke, gunpowder, blood and brandy mingling with sea spray and citrus. ‘Coeur de Noir’ recalls pen-and-ink drawings of yachts and sailors’ tattoos with an accord of black ink, rum, leather, birch tar and tobacco. Our personal favourite is the bewitching ‘Fathom V’, inspired by Shakespeare’s most maritime play, ‘The Tempest’. This intensely green composition blends leafy and earthy notes with thyme, vetiver, moss and salt, managing to suggest seawater, undergrowth and crushed mint all at once.
ABOVE RIGHT: 'Fathom V'
BELOW FROM LEFT: '1805 Tonnerre'; 'Coeur de Noir'
The black glass and dark wood bottles have a suitably gothic vibe, and there’s a wonderful surprise on the inside of each box – a reproduction of a sombre painting showing a raging sea that you could lift from the dressing table and hang straight on your wall.
Oh, and the brand’s name? It’s taken from the Beaufort Scale, created in 1805 by Sir Francis Beaufort and still used to measure wind conditions on land and at sea. Just beware of unmanned ships arriving in Whitby tonight...