Green, aromatic, pungent. What are we talking about? Obviously anise. One of the main notes of our iconic Agnostico All-in-one Balm and our new Agnostico Distillate Eau de Parfum, on the occasion of our 10th Anniversary. Everything is ready! Let’s discover together this plant loved by the audience of niche perfumes.  


Anise, whose scientific name is Pimpinella anisum, is a plant of the Apiaceae family, as well as carrot, parsley, cumin, fennel and many others. It reaches a maximum height of about 60 cm and is known for its striped, green seeds, produced by yellow flowers grouped in umbrellas. He loves the sun and the heat. Probably originating in the eastern Mediterranean basin and Asia Minor, anise has been used for its medicinal properties and religious rites since ancient times and is one of the few spices cultivated in the West. It is very appreciated in food as an ingredient of condiments and sauces but it is the alcoholic distillation the scope of its maximum expression: from the ouzo in Greece to the Armenian gold, through the pastis of Marseilles and the Italian sambuca! This popularity can be explained by its sweetness, in fact one of its main constituents, together with the estragolo and anisaldehyde, is the anethole, which has a sweetening power 13 times higher than that of sucrose. The anise Flavigny, anise seed covered with a layer of sugar, was one of the first French sweets, invented by the Benedictine monks in 719.


Not to be confused with the star anise (Illicium verum), whose essential oil has a very similar chemical composition, on a geographical and botanical level anise and star anise are very different. Organically, anise is more closely related to fennel, tarragon, basil and licorice. In addition, some flowers, such as mimosa, have floral facets of anise. This explains why when talking about notes anisate, does not refer to a single specific ingredient, but to a myriad of ingredients that perfumers can use, often as accents.


Although it often remains discreet to the nose, the use of anise in the perfume market, especially in niche ones, is an undeniable source of artistic inspiration for many. One of the possible causes of the gradual departure from the creation of "greedy" fragrances and the consequent approach to more "natural" notes, could lead to this plant with multiple aromatic facets and fresh green notes. Anise, therefore, especially for refined aromas that seek unconventional notes, seems to be the perfect option.


We at Bullfrog are particularly fond of this incredible plant, as our very first product, 10 years ago as today, has characteristic anisate notes. Agnostico without Bullfrog would not exist, but how could Bullfrog exist without Agnostico? The evolution of the legendary balm in the new fragrance Agnostico Distillate is a real celebration of our most iconic product. A rural, anised, woody and spicy Eau de Parfum, the result of a distillation process, which does not want to be a replica of the original fragrance of the balsam but a concentration of original ingredients, making the bond clear to those who smell it.


A fragrance that has literally made the history of Bullfrog and that the most long-lived customers trace back to the typical scent that you breathe in our Barbershop from the first day. During these years Agnostico has made thousands of customers fall in love and his distinctive notes of anise have inevitably contributed to build his legendary success. Try to believe it!