At first sniff Eau de Monsieur could easily be taken as a traditional cologne. A clean, clear citrus combined with a slightly resinous green accord opens the fragrance. But quite quickly I pick up the oakmoss note and this removes the scent from the traditional cologne category. This fragrance shows its age: it is a traditional chypre and that is not necessarily a bad thing. Eau de Monsieur is done well enough that it holds its own among today’s fragrances. Its clean, enjoyable opening its delicate and deft implementation of oakmoss in the heart accord; and its elegant drydown of sandalwood and amber all hold up well against today’s other fragrance offerings. A thoroughly pleasant and well-made fragrance, especially for those not put off by its lack of synthetic ambiance and its use of oakmoss.
This was Goutal's first scent (1980), and as such, it stands as a blueprint for her classic Sables (1985). Here is the same blend of citrus, oak moss and immortelle, but the latter is toned down and more in balance with the citrus than in the latter Sables, where it takes center stage.
The effect is that of a slightly sweet, and at the same time slightly bitter, chypre. If one didn't know Sables, and in reviewing, one must give originality its due praise, this would be most impressive on its own. The use of immortelle, with its burnt sugar-curry-garam massala effect, makes Eau de Monsieur one of the very first gourmands, but its restraint keeps it from truly entering that over the top category.
Impressive for its dry sweetness and its utter originality.
First Edit: Equivalent to Penhaligon's Blenheim Bouquet.
22nd December, 2015 (last edited: 27th December, 2015)
Sour, creamy and herbal. A little bit like a jar of homemade lemon curd in the garden. Very pleasant fragrance, unfortunately it lasts only about 3 hours. A soft, mossy note is all that is left after that. Nice scent for a weekend afternoon. Not sure if bottleworthy though.
Nothing unpleasant here, but nothing remarkable.
Good citrus notes out of the gate. After that, a standard citrus EdC with a bit of a musky dry-down.
Elegant, classic eau de cologne, with the same "dusty" and slightly funereal chypre feel of Encens Flamboyant. I really appreciate the mandarin-floral note here, it is very rich, beautiful, well crafted and sparkling like a diamond cut. I read it's geranium, but has quite an opulent density closer to rose. Just a subtle hint of insecticide (quite recurrent in Goutal's work – I recall feeling it in Duel too). Overall really nice, elegant, close to skin and not much persistent.