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A little dab will do ya: Bootlegger Cologne

Bootlegger Cologne from Portland General Store $98/60ml
Bootlegger Cologne from Portland General Store $98/60mlKenneth Fish

Bootlegger Cologne from Portland General Store


Straight out of Portland, Maine, the Portland General Store (PGS) makes “concoctions for the face and body from the rock-edged, working waterfront of Maine.” PGS products have been featured in this column a few times, and after what could only be considered immersive testing, not a single harsh word could be tapped out about them. Their beard oils were proclaimed “winners,” and were described with phrases such as “the fragrance blossoms voluptuously” and “masculine, yet still soft and beguiling.” The first whiff of their Farmer’s Cologne made me jot down that its fragrance occupies “the hinterland between imperceptible and orgasmic.” To say I am thus far fond of PGS products would be an understatement, so when the opportunity came along to try their recently re-issued Bootlegger Cologne, there was no saying no.

A quick sniff right out of the bottle will tell you immediately why it is called Bootlegger. The smell of alcohol jumps right out and is quickly followed by the scent of light, sweet molasses. Once on the skin, though, the fragrance becomes much more complex, and much like their Farmer’s Cologne, it is rich, complex, and subtle.

At first, the smell of sandalwood and musk is quite prevalent, but not to the point of being pushy. In short time, it becomes the earthy and masculine undertone of what is really quite light and sweet. Intertwined with this darker note are the lighter notes of orange blossom and sea air, with a warm hint of spicy nutmeg. It really is a delightful treat for the olfactory.

If you happen to be stymied as to what to get the dad in your life for Father’s Day, Bootlegger Cologne would be a good choice. It is vegan, at least 85% organic, handcrafted in America, and comes with a great backstory. For more information about Bootlegger Cologne of Portland General Store, click here. You can also check them out on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.