Launched 1854, re-released1953 - this edition is reviewed here.
The lemony notes of the initial impression gives way to a classic leather aroma that is unexpectedly bright, relaxed and never harsh. This fresh brightness is achieved by the addition of a very nice lemon-neroli dyad, which results in a rather unique modification of the leather. The leather is as dark as the shadow in the Taiga forests, with the shadowy interplay with the brighter fruit notes evolving into a harmonic olfactory theme.
The drydown adds the piece de resistance: the birch tar -raw, natural and harsh. The bis not a leather with a birch tar component; on me the tar is an equal partner of the leather at this stage. Some bergamot is thrown it too, keeping a certain brightness at this stage.
Later on a dark amber develops, which is quite edgy; the latter characteristic is enhanced by mixing in a styrax in the background. In the background a hint of sandalwood is present too.
i get moderate sillage, a very decent projection, and a good (for the natural products used by Creed here) longevity of around three hours on my skin, but markedly tapering after the first two and then staying close to the skin - this might be in part due to the age of the juice.
On me Creed's Cuir de Russie lacks the gasoline notes of Knize Ten and the sweet harshness of Tom Ford's Tuscan leather, and consistently has an elegance that those don't have. To some extent it is the antithesis of that great smooth and soft leather classic, the delicious Chanel vintage namesake. without the sinister darkness that such strong Russian Leather leather fragrances sometimes entail.
A classic balanced leather fragrance, with the oscillatory interplay of leather sharpness and fruity brightness creating an light-shadow performance that is quite unique. The ingredients are of first-class natural quality and the blending is superb. Having worn this over a number of years, I prefer this for cooler seasons. One of the best leather fragrances I can recall. 4.5/5