The Lesser Known Fragrance From Romeo Gigli That Eclipses Its Also Excellent Brother...
Sud Est goes on with a blast of gorgeous green oakmoss, while adding basil, thyme and other herbs along with a jasmine floral undertone for balance. As the fragrance progresses to its early heart the herbs grow in intensity as the basil and thyme become the stars, adding in an underlying cinnamon spice as the florals dissipate and the oakmoss slowly recedes. During the late dry-down the starring herbs remain as the oakmoss is finally replaced by supporting cedar and musk in the base. Projection is outstanding, and so is longevity at well over 15 hours on skin.
Sud Est was a blind buy, and I can safely say it is one of the best I have made to date. The early green oakmoss hooks you in and the herbs, spices and late woods seal the deal. If you have tried the regular Romeo Gigli, I would not use it as the basis for expecting to love or hate Sud Est as the compositions couldn't be much more different. Just about the only thing similar is the fabulous bottle they both come in. Honestly, I am having a hard time finding a fragrance Sud Est most closely resembles outside of the incomparable vintage Captain Molyneux early-on; and that only strengthens my belief that Sud Est was a landmark release that successfully bridged the gap between old-school powerhouses and modern releases alike. The bottom line is the discontinued $47+ street price per 50ml aftermarket bottle Sud Est is a home run from Romeo Gigli and a must buy for spice lovers and powerhouse fans alike, earning a very strong "near masterpiece" rating of 4.5 stars out of 5.
Pros: Oakmoss, herbs, spice and fine woods... What's not to love? Outstanding performance.
Cons: Discontinued, and getting harder to find on the aftermarket.
27th August, 2013 (last edited: 13th December, 2013)
A cozy mélange of mediterranean herbs, spices, resins and balsams with subtle floral elements and some final musky woodiness. Not so brilliant as the great Romeo Gigli by Romeo Gigli but anyway an interesting melancholic fragrance. The link of bergamot, herbs and moss imprints a classic and almost barber shop (cologny) initial vibe. Thyme, rosemary and terragon exude a strong initial herbal feel, the spices (mostly cinnamon and cloves) a certain kind of tasty depth, exoticism and pungency, the florals a sort of romantic and silent nostalgia of far moments while some basams in the dry down soften the musky-mossy aroma with a touch of honeyed stream. In this final expression the smell becomes more modern, comforting and and deep (salty-sweet, woody, mossy and floral). Evocative and discreet.
If you've tried Pino Silvestre and New West for Him, just think of a cross between them, though more towards New West. There is a strong pine-like note at first, but once that is gone it's a rather blended fragrance. Yes, there is clearly an herbal presence but it's not that clear. What bothers me most is that there is a "bright"quality which seems out of place and too strong. Is there any calone in this one? I seem to be especially sensitive to it. Not only don't I like this quality, but it seems to rob the fragrance of what might be a very interesting, super-dry quality. If you like fragrances with some calone, you might not even notice it here.
There is no animalic quality, like the castoreum in Yatagan (some have compared SE to it), nor do I find this particularly harsh. I just don't get enough dynamism here, and while it's nicely balanced, there's not enough note separation. However, unless you seek these things, it may not matter to you and you might really enjoy it. Longevity and projection/"sillage" seem to be at least very good. If you enjoy the "brightness" here, this might become a favorite of yours. I prefer fragrances like Green Jeans, Roadster, and the original Nino Cerruti fragrance for men, for example. I don't understand why some view this as super-dry, evocative of a barren, dusty plain, etc. For me, it has more of a culinary quality, actually.
28th August, 2011 (last edited: 10th November, 2011)
After the unique and unusual Romeo di Gigli per Uomo I was looking forward to this one launching at Bloomingdale's back in 1995. But it was a let down a real weak offering that just played it too safe that it needed to copy the per Uomo bottle because it has no personality.
I wasn't impressed with this highly praised Gigli scent. I find it pleasantly herbaceous with average sillage and a rather mild medicinal smell. Another case of high expectation that was not met.