Old school, but not necessarily in a bad way. Baladin exits the bottle with conventional citrus and lavender top notes, followed almost immediately by soft, fruity leather. The sweet fruit and leather accord at Baladin's heart reminds me of Daim Blond and Cuir Ottoman, though a bit darker and more smoky. A potent but very smooth aromatic/herbal accord gradually moves in from behind the leather to darken the scent and sharpen its edge. The leather seems to vanish altogether after just a few hours to leave a spicy, woody drydown touched with a hint of dry herbs.
I think of Baladin as a well-made scent, but not one that is terribly distinctive. It would make a good, safe, and appealing office scent, but I doubt it's something that will turn a lot of heads.
I liked it for a while, appreciated it for a while, then finally became discontent with it and washed it off.
For me, the leather came to dominate -- and I don't care for leather as a note.
The scent starts with some good citrus and mint notes. These are very refreshing and bright. Nothing sweet or heavy here. The leather at this point smoothes out some of the acidity in the citrus.
Then, the leather takes center stage. Actually, it is quite interesting at this point, and certainly distinctive. Obviously leather, still not sweet nor heavy. Reminds me of a well-worn pair of leather gloves which have been sitting in the sun.
But then the leather note takes on a somewhat odd character -- cool, vaguely aquatic. That combination doesn't appeal to me at all and I said farewell.
At least the vanilla never made an appearance.
While I can't count Baladin among the most distinctive releases in perfumery I surely can classify it as an honest and dignified masculine fragrance. A nice concoction of culinary herbs (mainly thyme) introduced by a very classic citrus-lavender opening. Birch tar and vetiver add some edge and a pleasant twist to this subtle composition.
Discreet, easy to wear but not banal. A perfect office fragrance that's still head and shoulders ahead of today's masculines. Reasonably priced and honestly crafted. Very nice.
28th July, 2011 (last edited: 05th August, 2011)
Classic and modern at once this is a clean, sharp, herbal, leathery fougere with a spicy, woodsy outcome and a masculine stamp. Reminds me a bit Cuoio Odori but a less leathery kind without the laundry feel of the latter. It starts with an edible green, lemony lavender, with notes of thyme, basil, oregano and others, which conjure me a bit the opening of Blenheim Bouquet and Imprinting by Il Profvmo. The aromatic top is the prelude for a leathery-floral accord light and classy. This middle part is very fast in my perception and the floral expression is just as a nuance of leather slightly perceivable around in the air. The transition to the base happens immediately in the way that the leather merges itself in the woodland smell .The base is indeed spicy and woodsy with notes of vetiver, terragon, pepper and birch, it goes on even retaining leathery nuances and a sort of disinfectant lemony kind of smell. The terragon-birch accord is herbal, slightly medicinal and leathery. The only one complaint is that the longevity is decidedly faint on my skin. Another wonderful scent.
23rd February, 2011 (last edited: 12th January, 2014)
I really enjoy the culinary herbal elements in the topnotes but I'm not too enamored of the birch leather accord for its lack of presence. While I do appreciate Patricia di Nicolai's light-handed approach, BALADIN wears just a little too discreetly to be satisfying. There is certainly no shortage of well-crafted substitutes in the citrus leather/woods category, from the likes of Aramis to the ridiculously affordable Pierre Cardin Pour Monsieur. Great start right off the blocks but fades to a forgettable finish.