Surrender to Chance Starts Its Own Luxury Perfume Line

The American decanting fragrance site, Surrender to Chance, is launching its own fragrance line. The company has teamed up with renowned, all-natural perfumer, AbdesSalaam Attar (or Dominique Dubrana) of La Via del Profumo, to create two fragrances called Surrender and Cold Water Canyon.

I rarely post press releases or talk about upcoming fragrance launches on this site, but I make occasional exceptions when something really interests me. This is one of those times. AbdesSalaam Attar is a truly fascinating man, in my opinion, and you can read more about the reasons why he’s so acclaimed in a piece I did on his Mecca Balsam, but I think he has a particularly gifted touch when it comes to jasmine. (His Tawaf is one of the best jasmine scents around, in my opinion.) Both of the new Surrender to Chance fragrances incorporate that ingredient to some extent. Plus, one of them also has hyraceum, a very cool, under-used note that provides a strongly animalic, skanky character.

So, here is the majority of Surrender to Chance’s press release for Surrender and Cold Water Canyon:

December 1, 2014.  Today Surrender to Chance introduces their first luxury perfumes, Surrender and Cold Water Canyon created by AbdesSalaam Attar (Dominque Dubrana), Composer Perfumer. We have both dabbled in creating fragrances at perfume workshops and loved the thought of offering our customers something that we have created.  We have been fascinated by scent our entire lives and to have a chance to experience the art of creating our own fragrances was a wonderful opportunity for us. Having a natural perfumer of such reknown agree to create our fragrances was just icing on the cake. It’s magical to create your own scent. To send a proposal to the perfumer and have them send back samples for you to sniff and then to add a little of this or take away a bit of that. Surrender started out with no hyraceum in it and after the suggestion to add it, the perfume sang to us.

Dominque Dubrana via the NYT. Photo by Domingo Milella.

Dominque Dubrana via the NYT. Photo by Domingo Milella.

Dubrana was raised in France, is a Sufi convert, and a self-taught perfumer who creates perfumes using only natural essences and tinctures from his perfume lab in Rimini, Italy. (New York Times article on Dominique Dubrana and AbdesSalaam Attar). His creations are so beautiful that he is the only natural perfumer to be included in Luca Turin/Tania Sanchez’s “Perfumes: The A-Z Guide”. The four perfumes included in the book have all received four stars!! […]  All of the perfumes that he creates are handcrafted and produced with the best aromatic raw materials certified 100% natural. We very excited to work with him and to have natural fragrances created for us. […] His fragrances are intended as a form of spiritual perfume-therapy and his belief is that the two natural functions of perfume are delight and healing.

Cold Water Canyon bottle. Source: STC and La Via del Profumo.

Cold Water Canyon bottle. Source: STC and La Via del Profumo.

Surrender is a rich jasmine floral that blends different jasmine absolutes with licorice, carrot, myrrh, gourmand notes and hyraceum. When we approached Dominique Dubrana we wanted to create a beautiful wedding scent and we were inspired by brides. Jasmine is used often as a wedding flower because of its narcotic and indolent qualities. After some testing of the fragrance, it was suggested that we add hyraceum to add a subliminal eroticism. Bertrand Duchaufour was the first perfumer to use hyraceum in a recent fragrance and it adds such a wonderful “something extra” to Surrender. It is also important to note that it is an ethical and sustainable source of animal pheromone which does not hurt the animal in any way as hyraceum is the crystallized and petrified form of Hyrax urine. Because of the nature of the ingredients in Surrender and for its function as a sensual aphrodisiac fragrance, animal pheromones have a sense and a place in it. While created as a wedding perfume, it is perfect for those who appreciate a glorious jasmine. One of our testers stated: “I am not generally a jasmine fan, but this is superb. It is soft and almost milky.  A jasmine fragrance for a non-jasmine fan!”

Coldwater Canyon was suggested to us by a friend and long-time customer who asked for a fragrance inspired by the scent of a summer canyon full of sage, pine and mountain plants with sweetly scented night-blooming jasmine perfuming the night air. Coldwater Canyon is a perfect balance between a green perfume and a floral.

Both perfumes are available in eau de parfum concentration from Surrender to Chance and can be purchased in full bottles and also as samples and decants.

A few points of clarification may be helpful. First, each fragrance contains more than the notes mentioned; those are only the main ones and not the complete list. Second, Surrender to Chance informed me that samples and decants of the perfumes will be available through them, but AbdesSalaam Attar will be selling the full bottles on his La Via del Profumo site. However, both sites ship worldwide.

Pricing on Surrender to Chance for the samples or decants will be as follows:

  • 1 ml                       $5.49
  • 2mls                      $10.93
  • 3mls                      $16.42
  • 5mls                      $23.77
  • 8mls                      $36.51
  • 15mls                    $65.88

Finally, just to repeat, the official release date for both fragrances is December 1, 2014.

16 thoughts on “Surrender to Chance Starts Its Own Luxury Perfume Line

  1. Even though I’m not a jasmine lover, it’s exciting news. I respect and admire Dominique Dubrana. Also, I simply find him a fascinating person. His website is itself a treasure trove of information and I hear he is a delight to work with or simply order from. I congratulate everyone on this new venture! Thanks for telling us. You must’ve gotten that press release early, or I’ve been bumped off STC’s mailing list!

    • Dominique Dubrana/AbdesSalaam Attar is an extremely cool person, and all my personal experiences or interactions with have been a delight indeed. He’s a gentleman in the true, classical sense of the word, and incredibly knowledgeable.

      As for STC, they’re a great company, and I wish them enormous success with this new venture. It’s kinda exciting to start your own perfume line. I’m looking forward to trying the new fragrances. With regard to the press release, all the bloggers probably got it ahead of the STC clients. I’m sure they’ll send out the news in an email tomorrow on the date of the perfumes’ actual release.

  2. Not having sniffed either one of the two new scents, I cannot really talk, but – the skankiness of some jasmines often turned me off from regular jasmine scents, and here the element is added to it?? My favorite jasmine scent is La Route d’Emeraude by Isabey which contains several “clean” jasmines. “Clean” like not urine-like smelling … even if it were only the slightest touch. Is there a difference between catlitter-box smelling jasmines and jasmine perfumes with a little animal skankiness?? Well, we will soon see how many followers the two new scents will have.

    • Animalic, skanky scents are not everyone’s cup of tea. For the small group who love hyrax/hyraceum, civet and/or castoreum, the news will probably be very exciting, but I’m sure just as many share your feelings about that genre of perfumery. For what it’s worth, Lisa Lawler of Surrender to Chance told me that the new “Surrender” perfume didn’t have a ton of hyraceum because they didn’t want to scare people off. So, I doubt it will be hardcore like Bogue Profumo’s Maai or Montecristo. Still, it sounds like it will be far outside your personal perfume tastes, and that’s perfectly understandable. 🙂

  3. I’m glad you wrote about this. It sucks that I just ordered a bunch of samples from Surrender to Chance two days ago. I love jasmine! I look forward to trying both these fragrances and I hope they’re beautiful. I wish them much luck. Their blog, Perfume Posse, was the first one I read when my perfume interest started growing exponentially.

    • STC is a great site and their Perfume Posse blog is a lot of fun. As a jasmine lover, have you tried AbdesSalaam Attar’s Tawaf, Maya? If not, you should keep that one in mind when you eventually order samples of these two new ones.

      • I have not tried Tawaf but I have heard good things about it and it is on my list of scents to try. I’ll move it up. I am curious about hyraceum and doubt it will be a problem. I have never gotten anything skanky in any perfume including the civet in vintage Bal a Versailles, which I love. Civet gives me the image of bright, rich, dark purple – as though it’s backlit.

        • You should try Bogue Profumo’s Maai because, if that one doesn’t give you any skank, then your skin truly drowns it out. And I suspect you might find the hyraceum, civet, and castoreum aspects of the gorgeous Maai to be quite special, Maya. It is such a fantastic scent, imo.

  4. La Via del Profumo and Dominique Dubrana have fascinated me since I discovered niche and natural perfumery several months ago. In fact, I had planned on sampling Mecca Balsam soon from STC. Looks like I’ll be sampling two more. 🙂

    I’m interested in sampling Tabac, Oud Caravan N° 3 and Tcharas.

    • Tabac is great! I really like that one a lot. Mecca Balsam was much, much less successful for me. I prefer his Milano Caffé, though my skin makes the vetiver bloom a bit too much for my personal tastes by the end. I’ve heard some good things about one of his Ouds, but I can’t remember now if it was Caravan No. 3. Either way, I think you’ll have a lot of fun exploring the line, because they’re all quite different from the sort of fragrances put out by other brands, never mind commercial fragrances.

  5. Methinks I should stay away from these, no? You know my issues with indolic jasmine (mothballs!) and skanky – eek to infinity. I think I am on the top of the list of “this is not for everyone”. That said, I wish STC the best in this endeavor. It is a classy company with great customer service and I will ALWAYS give them my business no matter that the other decant site may sometimes have better discounts.

    • The Cold Water Canyon one sounds more green, fresh, and aromatic than indolic or skanky, so perhaps that one might work for your tastes? I can understand your hesitancy, though, given some of your past experiences with jasmine.

  6. Great News!Love Profumo’s scents! I look forward to trying these two new perfumes.

    Is it possible this partnership will evolve so that Profumo will have US distributor? Sure hope so!

  7. Btw, I hadn’t mentioned that I adore his Tabac. I remember liking Milano Cafe but not being wowed; I should try it again. Those are the only ones of his I’ve tried, as per your recommendations. But indolic scents, nope, I can’t handle ’em, even though I love heady indolic flowers in nature. Night blooming jasmine and honeysuckle on a hot summer night? LOVE!!! I may be highly sensitive to indoles; I’m extremely allergic to lilac, for instance.

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