Razor: Karve CB Stainless on C w/ G-Tech Stainless
Blade: Gillette Minora Stainless
Brush: Karve Aluminum 24mm G5C Synthetic
Soap: Van Yulay Mis Amigos Soap
Aftershave: Van Yulay Mis Amigos Splash
Other: Van Yulay Mis Amigos Cologne
Mis Amigos, translated from Spanish, My Friends. I picked up this set from Monica (Van Yulay) at my recent trip to the Northwest West Shavers Meetup in Idaho. It seemed like a very fitting set to use on my first SOTD since returning. Meet-ups aren’t about seeing and picking up new stuff (although that is a fun aspect), rather they are about the friends you meet along the way. I was lucky enough to travel with Chris (Karve Shaving), Kaleb (Aylsworth Razors), Carlos (Shave On Gents – Canadian Mafia Show), and for a small portion of it Ben (One Pass BLOU – Canadian Mafia Show). I also got to catch up with a few folks in Edmonton during my layover there including Sean (MacDuffs Soap Company), Ken (Like Grandpa Grooming) and even got a nice little shave care package from Blackbird Farm & Apothecary delivered to my hotel.
After the four of us (Ben sadly couldn’t make the trip) completed the 15-hour drive to Idaho Falls, we were happy to check into our very posh AirBNB. I’m very glad we went this route vs a hotel as our home became kind of the hub for the meetup. Before the meetup ever started, we opened our doors and were able to host many new friends and artisans for a few beverages. At our house, we were joined by Phil (Bricktown Grooming), Matt (Razor Emporium), Monica (Van Yulay), Paul (Trotter Handcrafts), Aaron (Frugal Shave), Austin (A&A Shaving) and several wet shaving friends: DK, Dewy, Meg, DJ, Heather, Aaron, Rex, and others I’m sure I’m leaving out. We even had a nice group supper where I got to dine with Banocka and her significant other (Ben? my apologies).
The meetup itself was *almost* anticlimactic, not because it wasn’t a great event, we just got to meet so many others already. I say almost because there were a few artisans and people I hadn’t connected with yet. I browsed the booths, made some (several) purchases and was able to connect with Gary (Mojo Handcrafts), Jon (345 Soap), Bubbles & Bows, Matt (Teton Shaves), Jerry Stark, Gentleman’s Nod, Chiseled and Kempt and Tin Can Soap Co. I came home with new brushes, soaps, aftershaves, fragrances, a lather bowl, a few household goodies and some new friendships that will last a lifetime. This is my second big meetup and I’m already planning the next ones (Razor Emporium in Feb/Mar and Maggards sometime in late spring). If you are into the hobby I highly suggest checking one of these out.
But how does it shave? Well, Mis Amigos is a bright orange citrus cologne scent. Scent notes listed include: Top notes of Lime, Grapefruit, Lemon, Bergamot, Jasmine, Mint, Orange, Mandarin, Ginger, Middle notes of Jasmine, Peach, Freesia, Hyacinth, Rosemary, Rose and base notes of White Musk, Cedar, Oakmoss, Patchouli, Leather, Tonka Bean, Tobacco Star Anise, Amber. I was instantly drawn to this one when smelling all the offerings at the Van Yulay booth. I’d say this is along the lines of an orange-forward Aqua Di Gio with a bit of a Mugler Ultra Zest/Paco Rabanne Ultra Red vibe. The scent off the puck is medium strong, which it maintains through the shave. Van Yulay isn’t my favourite base but with a bit of patience, it lathers well enough and more than does the job. What I do appreciate is Monica’s attention to detail with her fancy soap pours and her enormous catalogue of products. I’m positive you will find something in the catalogue that will pique your interest. I’m glad I picked up the set.
The brush is a new addition to the den. This brush Karve soft launched at the meetup. It is an anodized aluminum CNCed handle with a 24mm G5C Synthetic. Chris graciously gave this to his road companions as a way to celebrate the trip. Man, this thing is a beauty with a nice heft and the typical Karve attention to detail. The 24mm G5C knot is the perfect pairing for this handle. The razor is also a Karve favourite of mine, an aluminum CB C plate with a stainless G-Tech (Gillette Tech inspired) handle. People rave about the Overlander (aka GOAT-lander) but the OG Christopher Bradley is still the best in my books.
A fantastic shave today and this set will always be a great reminder of the awesome time at the Northwest Wet Shavers meetup. Hopefully next year I will see you there.
All for now – J