I must have a different batch then some of the reviewers before me, because my Nombril Immense starts off with a pretty significant patchouli note right from the get-go. There is a mild citrus that balances the earthier aspect of patchouli which a smidge of leather (present in many ELDOs) smoothens out the fragrance as a whole. Overall N-I is fairly linear to my nose, though there are dashes of spice and incense as the fragrance fades to base. I like patchouli but find it hard to wear the super-strong patchouli fragrances. This is a nice compromise because you get a lot patchouli but without smelling like the inside of a 1970 VW Westfalia.
Being a coffee (beverage) fanatic, I enjoy sampling coffee fragrances and own a few, though I rarely find myself wearing any of them. This is the best of the many I've tried. I've only tried the extrait version, and it starts with a powerful, dark coffee note mated to warm, winteresque spices. Lavender mellows out the power of the coffee/spice accord as it dries down, but it remains on the stronger side throughout. Most coffee fragrances are creamy and gourmand... Cafe Noir has enough punch that one could say it presents coffee as a note in a non-gourmand way. If you think of it, coffee itself has a very woody aroma and this is as much a spicy/woody/lavender as it is a gourmand.
Very good and highly recommended.
Basically a pleasant and smooth leather after a briefly pungent opening accord that is very rubbery/fuel-like. The leather accord never reaches the depth of luxury of something like a Chanel Cuir de Russie or Knize Ten, but it's a good leather nonetheless. I'd like to try the extrait version of this - if there's more emphasis on the heart/base the leather may come out even more smoothly.
BY Man is proof positive that designers can put out top-notch fragrances. Unfortunately it's also proof positive that unless a fragrance sells well, the quality is meaningless and it will be discontinued, it's fans relegated to praying the bottle they just spend $150 on eBay isn't a fake (as many are).
BY is a combo of spicy oriental with some fougere elements as well. There's lavender in there, but it's overlaid with sandalwood and amber with a blend of spices. The drydown isn't a traditional 'leather', but rather it's very 'leathery' in its texture. Sillage and longevity are superb. Whenever I wear BY I'm struck with how out of place it is amongst designer fragrances from the same time period. It's a shame that D&G's gamble didn't pay off.
The most economical way to sample BY is to purchase a mini. If you decide to go for a bottle be careful because even reputable sellers are being sold fakes. Remember, you get what you pay for and if a deal seems too good to be true, it probably is!
The quality of Coromandel is evident in the amazing reviews that precede my own - truly well done reviews are often inspired by a well done fragrance.
Coromandel is one of those very rare fragrances that is far more about the feel than the actual notes. As many have mentioned, it is a patchouli fragrance that doesn't smell like patchouli. It's been 'Chanelized' - made classy and discrete. Whenever I wear Coromandel I am struck with a notion that there is something very wine-like about it...smooth and luxurious, even while the sillage and longevity are significant. Unlike it's 'sister' Borneo 1834 in which the patchouli and chocolate notes are distinct and evident, Coromandel is blended so well that the entire experience of wearing it is like being enveloped in a chocolate blanket, only it's a type of chocolate you've never heard of or tasted before (and that you probably can't afford).
Patchouli in and of itself has very cocoa-like qualities, and whatever was done to blend Coromandel took the best, similar qualities of patchouli and cocoa and combined them such as to make a seamless whole. Truly fantastic, and if you're going to splurge on one 200ml Exlcusifs jug, this is the one to do it on.
Despite the name 'Une Fleur', this fragrance is a bouquet of flowers. I get quite a bit of Gardenia, and in many ways this fragrance is a derivative of Chanel's own Gardenia, but I also get a number of other white florals as well in the mix. My skill at identifying single floral notes from a bouquet is limited, but I believe I sense ylang, jasmine, and lilac along with the gardenia. This was a limited edition from nearly 10 years ago, but bottles are around. Worth getting for Chanel fans.
There is no shortage of citrus fragrances, and even within Guerlain there are a plethora of citrus options. Philtre d'Amour is, in my humble opinion, the greatest of all citrus fragrances for many reasons. The first and foremost reason is that unlike most citruses (and especially the Guerlain Eaux) the bright, sunny citrus lasts for hours, persisting well into the drydown. Imperiale and Du Coq are nice but the sunshine fades within 30 minutes!
The opening is a sharp and bracing citrus blend of lemon and verbena. I'm not particularly great at picking out florals, but jasmine, which itself has a very bright and almost citrus-like quality, is clearly underpinning the citrus and provides the bridge to the heart accord of citrus and florals, accompanied by a slight powderiness. After a couple hours of citrus/florals there is a slow meandering transition to a very subtle but very real patchouli. It's nothing like a patchouli-based fragrance type of patchouli note, but rather a note of depth and texture that can only be patchouli. A similar patchouli note can be found in the heart notes of Guerlain's recent Chypre Fatale (and is sadly absent in La Petit Robe Noir where it would work well). Even in the base the citrus is still present.
I haven't tested PdA against Plus Que Jamais, a fragrance of which I fortunately own a nice decant, but they are in some ways mirrors of each other. PQJ is a floral unpinned by citrus and PdA the other way around. Both are great.
Overall Philtre d'Amour is just as sunny and 'summertime' as a fragrance can be. Yes, those Les Parisiennes are tricky to acquire and pricey - and there are many more 'well known' offerings in the line, but if you have the opportunity to sample and/or buy PdA definitely grab it. One last note, the original PdA from 2000 (in the cylindrical 30ml bottle) is very, very similar but even brighter in the topnotes but not as long lasting. I'm not sure if the original was also an EdP as the current version is.
I've been reading BN reviews for years, and I've finally been inspired to write one as I sit, enjoying my application of Tiffany for Men. Part chypre, part oriental, TFM is (to me) one of the greatest masculines ever made. Structure, composition, sillage, longevity, etc. all top notch. TFM is as classy as they come but unlike some 'formal' fragrances it can be worn every day or casually.
The topnotes are crisp citrus oils... not just 'citrus' in the normal airy manner, but a rich, thick citrus. From citrus a sandalwood emerges, backed by a bit of spice and florals that enhance the sandalwood - but it's the sandalwood that is really the star and my favorite aspect of the fragrance. The sandalwood persists for a few hours, slowly giving way to an mossy/woodsy yet lightly sweetened base. There is a slightly powdery feel throughout the application, giving TFM that slightly formal feel to it, but it's nowhere near as formal or stuffy as something like Platinum Egoiste.
As of the time of writing a 50ml bottle of TFM is a mere $50 - it may be the best $50 you ever spend on a bottle!