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Bukhara by Gallivant at Indigo Perfumery

Bukhara is woody, spicy and earthy perfume, composed around the enigmatic orris – one of perfumery’s most prized (and expensive) raw materials.

Bukhara is a fairytale Uzbek city on the Silk Road. Desert earth, an oasis, chalky white city walls, minarets and turquoise tiles. Fruits and spices – sophistication and adventure. A journey into Central Asia.

The story

Cotton fields, the arid earth brought to life with irrigation canals. Dry and crumbling city walls. Minarets and madrassas, peaceful inner courtyards. The trickle of water in fountains. Deserted alleys, white houses with pale blue doors, bleached by the sun and heat. Dust in the narrow streets.

Children laughing, playing in the shade. A kaleidoscope of faces: Uzbek, Tajik, Turkic, Persian, Chinese, Mongol, Russian, …. Evidence of a melting-pot culture – this is no backwater.

A chalk-pale city, clay and brick houses whitewashed to guard against the sun. A thousand shrines, and turquoise tiles. Old Soviet books being sold alongside silks and spices and the traditional karakul fur (think Astrakhan hats and coats).

Private patios, vines overhead. Mulberry trees. The pleasures of the table – apricots, pears, and the local specialty – called ‘shurdanak’ - roasted and salted apricot seeds. Cucumbers and carrots in the markets. A convivial, open city of artisans and workshops. A feeling of the vastness of Central Asia, the endless horizons of Uzbekistan, this double-landlocked country. And a sense of the desert beyond the city, and the promise of adventure …”


The perfume notes:

Top: Spicy, fruity and sparkling in the opening with notes of caraway, pear, coriander and bergamot

Heart: A floral woody heart with orris and a touch of jasmine – the latter a nod to the Persian influences in this part of the world. Clove and apricot enrich the colours and textures.

Base: A base of benzoin resin, saffron, amber, wood and cotton-soft musks

30 ml. EdP, 1 m. spray sample 

Family: Spicy, woody, earthy


The perfumer – Ralf Schwieger      

To create the Bukhara fragrance, founder Nick Steward worked with his friend of many years, New York-based perfumer Ralf Schwieger. Ralf is originally from Germany, but trained as a perfumer in the south of France.

He’s created much-loved perfumes for Hermès, Frederic Malle, Yves Saint Laurent, Atelier Cologne and Aedes de Venustas, among others.

Says Nick “I’m so happy Ralf worked with me to bring this perfume to life. He’s very well-known and respected, so I feel very proud that he agreed; as we’re a young, emerging brand. I’ve always appreciated Ralf’s sense of humour, his relaxed approach to his craft (and his evident talent), married with his precision, as well as his impish sense of fun and curiosity.”

Adds Ralf “Of course I was intrigued and curious – I love to travel, but I didn’t know Uzbekistan or Bukhara – so it’s been a total journey of discovery for me too.”

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