There's a mixture of the leather, woods, fruit, and musk that has a bit of funk to it in the opening. This lasts about 15 minutes and then the leather, patchouli, and woods take command. There's also a bit of sweetness which I think is the leftover fruit note. This is primarily a wood and leather fragrance so if that's something you like then don't hesitate to pick up a bottle.
Bergamot, lavender and jasmine command a beautiful classic opening blast, which is soon complimented by a floral not of carnation - beautifully old school. Cedarwood in the drydown leads to the darker phases, with patchouli and gentle moss aromas with barbershop characteristic dominating the base. There is a somber richness permeating this composition, like a veil of shadow over the autumn sun. Good silage and projection with over four hours of longevity. Very nice - 4.5/5
Maxim's pour Homme opens with a lavender and carnation floral duo with an underlying relatively sweet mélange of citrus fruit. The florals remain into the heart of the scent, as a smooth clove spiced leather accord joins the florals with an initially mild cedar and sandalwood backbone revealing itself as does a moderate amount of clean musk from the base. During the dry-down the florals finally recede and the now starring leather dries and sheds the scent's remaining sweetness without losing its smoothness, now coupling with dirty patchouli, the remnants of the cedar and slightly powdery oakmoss to finish off the scent's development. Projection is average and longevity is excellent.
Maxim's pour Homme is really quite captivating. It really is a leather scent with a cedar spine when all is said and done, but the initial florals and clove spice play key roles in setting up the slowly growing smooth leather and cedar wood accord as the scent progresses. Maxim's pour Homme is plenty strong, but it's never overpowering and quite easy to wear. While Maxim's does not smell altogether different during its dry-down than many of its top-notch contemporaries, it certainly succeeds in its execution and is very well made. If you like powerhouse scents like Giorgio VIP for Men but want less bite and projection Maxim's may be just what you are looking for. As for me, I love the stuff and award it a very strong 4 to 4.5 stars out of 5.
A slightly floral, slightly powdery, somewhat sweet blend (with a hint of spice) that dances around a pile of wood. That's mostly what I get (leaving aside top notes, which I try to avoid). I'm not getting any appreciable leather, patchouli, or oakmoss. Those who seek the kind of sandalwood note you get in a lot of "men's" fragrances from the 1970s and 80s might like this one, but I'm not a huge fan of it. If I didn't have others like it, I'd go ahead and try to grab a bottle cheaply. However, since I do, I will just keep my mini bottle of this one and be content. Longevity is very good and projection/"sillage" is just right. I'll rate it positive because I think it will satisfy those who seek this kind of fragrance.
I'm wondering if there was more than one formulation, because unlike some of the other reviews, I don't understand how this can be compared to Grey Flannel or Havana (there's not even a hint of tobacco). Nor is there an animalic element, leathery or otherwise. Vintage Woodhue Cologne for Men has a similar woody drydown, but I like its first couple hours better. I found a list of notes for it over at fragrantica.com, which is not identical to the one above: "...bergamot, lavender, lemon, clary sage and carnation. The heart features jasmine, rose, cedar, sandalwood, clove, and amber, while the base consists of oak moss, patchouli, cedar, vanilla, musk and leather."
Maxims is a compelling woody fougere, with three very distinct phases.
A largely superfluous opening is excessively sweet, but mercifully brief. Beyond the forgettable top notes, it changes direction quite radically, becoming darker, arid and powdery. This deeply aromatic and woody phase only begins to soften with the emergence of the very rich moss in the base. It is lightly underscored by a very subtle sweetness, ensuring that the latter stages are as impressive as the heart notes.
Overall, and despite the flawed opening, this is a delightful fragrance. It is very obvious just why it has so many devotees