Jack: Piccadilly ’69 is the latest fragrance released by actor turned perfumer and self-confessed ‘compulsive smeller’, Richard E Grant.
It’s the follow up to Richard’s sophomore scent, “Jack: Covent Garden” released in April 2015, which enjoyed a vast amount of success upon its exclusive launch at Selfridges.
Released in September 2016, Jack: Piccadilly ’69 returns to Jack’s roots, launching exclusively at Liberty in London. Quintessentially British in every aspect of its aesthetic, the brand takes its name from the British flag, the Union Jack. There’s almost a Russian doll effect of British pride; the perfume’s box is instantly striking in a deep shade of pillar-box red, which instantly conjures image of British iconography – the red of a British telephone box, or the exclusive to London double decker busses which circulate the city.
The British branding radiates from the inside, with the bottle preserved in a canvas bag decorated in a faded Union Jack print, which in a previous conversation with Richard, he suggested you could “keep your tampons, condoms, money, your phone, whatever” inside, once the bottle has been removed. There’s a really comforting sense of a personal relationship when you purchase a bottle of Jack perfume – a luggage label comes attached to the Union Jack cover, almost in a ‘pay it forward’ mantra, with which it can be personalised to be given as a fragrant gift.
It’s this consistency in an almost uniform aesthetic which creates a sense of sophistication around all Jack products. The bottle’s design; the way in which it’s simply a clear bottle with a black striking label on the front, breaks down any preconceptions of ‘style over substance’ – Jack: Piccadilly ’69 simply just delivers.
But the all-important question arises; what does Jack: Piccadilly ’69 smell like?
With this year’s offering to the fragrance industry, Richard has certainly taken a different direction to Covent Garden, which dressed itself in a spice-filled warmth.
At its surface, Piccadilly ’69 guides the wearer by the hand through orchards of Bergamot. Ginger and green leaves infuse to create a citric blanket of flavour – it’s important to note that perfumes settle differently in different skin, but to myself, licks of menthol seemed to show themselves on the surface. The ginger is certainly a prominent twist in the perfume, adding a tangy spice that sits pleasantly on the senses.
Delving deeper, the wearer travels further, being enveloped in an aromatic scent of the East. If one closes their eyes, it’s almost as if taking a stroll through fields of Cypriol, growing freely in the Madhya Pradesh region of India. This is blended with mate, the national infusion of Argentina, enjoyed in several other countries across South America, including Uruguay, Paraguay and Brazil. Last but by no means least, one of most underrated smells which would certainly be in the running if you were to ask people to list their favourite smells. It’s a smell that I personally have an appreciation for, it creates vivid memories stemming back to my childhood…
The last ingredient in the heart of Jack: Piccadilly ’69 is petrol. It’s a chemical sweetness which is in no way overpowering, it just sits pleasantly in the background, letting the wearer know, without obnoxiously grabbing their attention, that it’s there. It utilizes a subtly which blends with the other ingredients perfectly.
At its base, Jack: Piccadilly ’69 consists of comforting tones of cedar wood, creating an almost homely aroma infused effortlessly with licks of dry amber. Settling elegantly into the wearer’s skin, an odour of leather emanates from the skin, much like the petrol, sitting faintly in the background creating a blanket upon which all the other essences and aromas settle lovingly into.
Find out about Jack Piccadilly ’69 at: