Nostalgia is supposed to smell like an Italian racing car on the track, complete with gasoline fumes, rubber seating, and all. During the fleeting topnotes, Nostalgia pulls this off in spectacular fashion with a pure petrol note that would put the current version of Fahrenheit to shame, followed quickly by a shot of sweet car-seat rubber and leather.
The smoke and fuel dissipate rather quickly, however, leaving behind a sweet, rubbery, vanillic tailbone that smells rather too close to Bvlgari Black to justify the price. The scent is nicely woody and quietly masculine.
Beyond the arresting opening, I don’t think Nostalgia is particularly challenging, so I see this as a great option for men (or indeed women) who might be looking to dip their toes into niche but not go too far into weird/ugly/difficult territory. This is just different enough to provide good fun and shock value, but sweet, woody, and generically aftershave-like in the drydown to reassure novices and big ole scaredy cats.
Fun, fun, fun until daddy takes the T-bird away! Nostalgia does indeed start out smelling like new tires and auto fuel. I suspect that like Tubéreuse Criminelle, there's a menthol or eucalyptus note creeping around here somewhere, and that it's responsible for some of the rubber/petroleum product vibe.
Once these top notes clear off, I'm left with a very clean and ever so slightly powdery leather accord that persists for about an hour or two. The drydown is much more conventional than the opening, dominated as it is by powdery musk and creamy woods.
Do I like it? Yes, I suppose so, but the top notes leave me expecting something much more novel and dramatic in the development - something that never quite occurs.
A bit of a tease, this one. The gasoline/leather top notes give the expectation of a true gas-pump fantasy. But along with gasoline’s scent, Nostalgia has gasoline’s volatility. Still, the crackly woody drydown of Nostalgia is a wonderful scent in its own right, top notes or not. And for those of you who like woody fragrances but don't want a warm, harmonious feeling, Nostalgia remains fairly cool, carrying the chill of evaporation that gasoline has on your skin.
Two thoughts. One, this is an interesting option for those still mourning the loss of Fahrenheit’s original formulation. Two, Nostalgia points out that in the language of perfumery, gasoline is a woody note.
Nostalgia opens slightly lemony and spicy, with an herbal/medicinal (birch tar) shy undertone before to develop all the aforementioned characteristic burnt rubber (warm tyre)/warm (semi-synthetic) leather effect so uncompromising and realistic. I see the association with the olfactory idea of an old car's interiors smell under the roaring sun (leather/rubber with a touch of smoke). The aroma ends slightly gasseous but warm and almost yummy/vanillic. Masculine with no compromises. The smell, so faithfully reproducing such an "industrial" type of aroma, hardly seems the outcome of an artisanal kind of handmade work. A really particular take on rubber (more than leather) from an artisanal glorious brand unfortunately too much "closed in itself".
30th November, 2013 (last edited: 25th June, 2014)
Motor oil, flowers and honey
Motor oil, flowers and honey is what I get right off the bat. There is something both intoxicating and repulsive about this. It is one of those scents that I am fascinated by, but not sure I can think of too many times I would wear this. Perhaps at my annual punk show or a darker photography exhibit. Clearly it does exactly what it is designed to do, which makes it a good scent. I get a fair amount of longevity with it, and I do find there is some progression over time toward the more floral elements.
The front end of this is oddly compelling -- the rubbery smell of warm tyres in the sun. The note is clear, strict, focused, quirky and fun in a strange way. There's things in the background but essentially on me that was it.
The second half didn't please me to any great extent. A somewhat sweet, vanilla and light wood combo.