Here's what goes into making Gucci's new fragrance

Expert perfumer Alberto Morillas reveals the connection he had with Gucci guru Alessandro Michele to make the new men’s fragrance Guilty Absolute.

Robert Chilton May 25, 2017

What was the first step in making this fragrance?
Alessandro asked me, ‘Can you make a new perfume for me that is different to the others?’ He wanted a men’s fragrance with the spirit and roots of Gucci. 

How many times did you meet with him?
I had three or four sessions with him. He’s not a perfumer but he knows every perfume and recognises them all. This is the first time I’ve worked with a designer who loves and understands perfume.

Was he an inspiring guy to work with?
Yes, he knows exactly what he wants and he concentrates a lot. He likes staying in one direction and doesn’t want to change.

How many attempts did it take to get the fragrance right?
I proposed many different direc- tions for Guilty Absolute such as wood from Rome, and leather from Tuscany. But immediately Alessandro chose this one.

What are the key notes?
Wood, leather and patchouli. I think it smells like a tree in a forest wrapped in leather. There are so many new per- fumes on the market so you need to be different.

How long have you been mak- ing fragrances?
About 45 years I think; I started when I was about 20 and I am self-taught. My passion has always grown. If you don’t have the passion you can’t make per- fumes. You need to believe in it every day.