Opens with equal parts Dove soap and Ferre's Bergamotto Marino with hints of Mugler Cologne in the background... it smells like the most expensive soap in the world.
After a few minutes I get less Dove and more Mugler Cologne, only sharper and without the powder that eventually emerges with Cologne, as well as some subtle but very natural clementine notes.
It brings to mind sun, grassy fields, and citrus.
It's probably one of the best fragrances I've ever sampled...
...if only it stuck around for more than 20 minutes. After that it's a faded shadow of it's former self that only serves to remind you of how good it was when you put it on. The price tag is impossible to ignore as well; $150/ 1oz, $235/ 1.7oz CAD is ridiculous for such a poorly performing fragrance, even if it is done in a "traditional Cologne" style.
Neroli Portofino lifts you up into Heaven and then cruelly pulls you back down to Earth within moments.
It rates a solid, solid Positive for scent, but a low Neutral for performance.
Yes indeed, this is in a similar vein as Mulger, 4711, Acqua di Parma Colonia, etc. However, Neroli Portofino is the only one out of all of the options that I tried that has the quality, silage, longevity, masculinity that I was looking for and it didn't leave me wishing for something more. And, while the scent isn't all that original or groundbreaking, there is something a bit more contemporary about Neroli Portofino that, while subtle, sets it apart from many of the "classics". I don't ever feel like I am wearing something old timey when I wear it. These things make it well worth the price, as far as I am concerned. If you like the Eau de Cologne style and want a fragrance that performs like more reliable fragrances that you may be used to, this is probably it.
I Just bought a bottle on ebay, 50 ml for $100. I applied it around 11am this morning and as I am typing this review it is still wafting, the Lavender is prominent on the dry down, a little amber, very slight. Would I pay full price? Yes if I have to. Great bargain. I was looking for a good summer fragrance with a tropical feel. Virgin Island water has too much Coconut to wear casually. Neroli Portofino with a white tee and shorts is unbeatable. Give it a chance, I used up a Bloomingdales sample and decided to make my purchase. It was available cheaper, why not....
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A stupendously beautiful neroli perfume, this is indeed just like 4711, but with outstanding projection & longevity. lt also has a woodiness in the base that the other lacks, & it doesn't have that metallic quality that l get from scents like Profumum's Neroli. lt lasts a good ten hours on me; easily the longest-lasting citrus that l've tried. A perfectly refreshing summer scent, & one can't help but think of azure seas when gazing at that bottle.
This was my first foray into the TF private blend, and it is special to me for that reason alone, but the fragrance is truly lovely. If the whole idea of fragrance is to smell great, this totally delivers. Think of 4711 without as much soap, and much more longevity and you pretty much have this fragrance. Combine this with Tuscan Leather to create a summer blend that unique, and will get lots of positive comments.
Special place in my heart...
I really like this stuff. I really do. Wish I could wear it all the time; but sadly, this is NOT(can't stress that enough) for everyday use. I wore this on the night I was married and I can't really think of any other place where a scent like this is appropriate. It gives me that floating through the Mediterranean vibe. This is a spring/summer type of fragrance. If worn on a cold day, it feels like you are being tackled by a 240lb linebacker with 'Neroli' written on the back of his jersey...all day long.
Pros: Longevity, good for switching it up every once in a while.
Cons: Almost too classy. If you wear this in the winter, you're gonna have a bad time. "
Underrated development, a great scent
It starts off with a very sharp citrus note. That note picks up in intensity for a few minutes, and after about an hour fades into a more soft, delicious, richly complex citrus fruit-bowl. Something a little darker and more substantial in is there too, but just a bit. Really great stuff, safe for the harshness in of the opening. It is one that I would very much like to get in a split.
Everything a fragrance should be
Tom Ford's Neroli Portofino is an exceptional adaptation of the note neroli (and an exceptional adaption of racy advertising). In addition to neroli, there is a light amount of orange, mandarin, lavendar. This makes it a fresh-floral fragrance without becoming too complex and muddled (as many florals do) or too generic (as fresh fragrances often do).
Neroli Portofino is not just another typical fresh soapy fragrance at a niche price, like Atelier's Grand Neroli (and even Jardin D'Amalfi's neroli note suffers from this flaw). Many people on here have smelled the neroli-based Mugler Cologne, but this is not just an incremental upgrade. This is a wonderful fragrance of it's own right that is miles better than Mugler Cologne. The soapy shrill and loud citrus-like neroli (redolent of bandages and alcohol) is replaced by a gentle, delicate, natural and smooth neroli. Think of how Encre Noire's shrill vetiver compares to Sycomore's smooth vetiver. If you removed the vetiver and replaced it with some fruit, comparing Neroli Portofino's floral vibe to Sycomore's wouldn't be entirely out of the question either.
Versatility is where Neroli Portofino shines. This is truly unisex, rather than just labeled such, equally acceptable for both men and women to wear. Age is no issue either, as it's modern enough for any young person to wear with ease, but still sophisticated enough for an older person to wear. This is surely meant for the summer and spring, but don't count out Fall either. This fragrance projects well and has very good longevity compared to most summer fragrances.
What this scent truly reminds me of is business. It's the perfect professional fragrance, as it safe to wear, but also unique. This fragrance is a clean-cut business man, sharp, good-looking, well dressed, both alert and vibrant but also calm and collected. It will last you throughout the day and you will be noticed, but it's never too strong or flamboyant.
This is not a groundbreaking or revolutionary fragrance in any way, but it does take what some fragrances have been trying to do and simply does it better. It is a dependable one suited for daily wear if you choose, one which might have you moving closer to smell it on various occasion. The progression is a bit linear, but it's good that it largely preserves it's wonderful opening rather than forgoing it. The price is not cheap, but it is well worth it's price of admission.
For those who do like fresh, clean fragrances with a little bit of a floral undertone, I cannot urge you enough to try this. Easily one of the best, if not THE best of the Tom Ford line, even giving competition to Tobacco Vanille. As a summer fragrance, it's easily one of my top choices and I know when my decant runs out, I am going to end up with a full bottle of this in my collection very soon.
Do try this one.
the price question
The price discussion. I face it with all the Fords as well as many other costly perfumes. Will you pay, for example, $250 for a quality perfume when there are other comparable perfumes at a fraction of the cost? There is a market for costly perfumes, and if people are willing to spend big bucks, more power to them. So I don't forget the cost of the Ford line, but I try also to consider the perfumes independent of price. I'll admit, it's an odd little dance in my head.
Neroli Portofino is a pretty neroli cologne. "Pretty" is really tossing it a bone. It's certainly not ravishing, it's nothing new, and it doesn't seem like a particularly fine iteration of what it purports to be: a lasting, concentrated Eau de Cologne (edc) made with the finest materials to be found.
For a cologne to be successful, it must offer one of two things: faultless quality or an interesting variation. Cologne is certainly nothing new, and because of the simplicity of its componentry (search for the recipe and you'll find it easily) it's not hard to find excellent and inexpensive versions. Interesting alternative colognes are not hard to find either. Examples: CdG Vettiveru, Atelier Cologne’s Rose Anonyme and Trefle Pur, Maison Francis Kurkdjian Cologne pour le Soir.
A neroli cologne isn’t new, so Ford isn’t attempting the inventive variation. As for quality, Neroli Portofino falls a bit flat to my nose. The emphasis on bright florals, with a grounding in a sweet musk, gives a fairly two-dimensional impression of neroli. EDC is meant to be a brief, invigorating experience. Neroli Portofino abides by the former principle, but neglects the latter. Neroli Portofino misses the point that cologne’s success comes from simplicity, not refinement. Refinement looks like overbreeding when the mark is missed, and Neroli reads like the shivering, overgroomed teacup poodle of the edc set. (For a different take on a neroli cologne at 1/5 the price, try Comme des Garcons Anbar.)
The ad photos for Neroli Portofino capture what find least appealing about Ford-world. It purports to be racy and shocking. To me it reads as contrived and tired. Over-styled, sexless nudity might capture the Ford esthetic for his fans, but it just looks like those ridiculous laughy-smily Bijan ads from the 80s-90s to me.
from scent hurdle.com
A grown-up, refined answer to 4711
Imagine a world-class chef making a Big Mac using Kobe beef, artisan cheddar, a fresh-baked bun, organic LTO, and a McD's secret sauce using homemade mayo and ketchup. On one level, it'd be amazing, but on another...well, it's a little overkill for a Big Mac.
That's what Tom Ford Neroli Portofino is...it's a top-tier take on the classic German cologne, which most of us know through 4711. While 4711 has no staying power, TFNP will often last 12hr+. While 4711 has distinctly chemical undertones, TFNP smells all-natural. TFNP is distinctly more refined, higher quality, and all-around better than 4711. In the end, though, it's a single-note neroli cologne. If that's what you're looking for, TFNP will give you the best neroli cologne you've ever had (and it's honestly one of my favorite scents for that reason). If you're looking for something complex and intriguing, TFNP will disappoint. Remember...you're not paying top dollar for a prime steak, just a world-class Big Mac.
Pros: Great neroli note, *amazing* longevity
Cons: Single-note, expensive
bought this to go on family holiday early May 1st night out asked Mam if she'd pinched my aftershave Tom Ford as i was wearing Aventus No she said im wearing Avon forever Salma Hayek 14 quid a bottle. I couldnt tell the difference. TRUE !!
Cons: to expensive
Lot of strengths, few weaknesses
First wear test of Neroli Portofino today. Wore it to work with 4 sprays. It was slighltly sharp right out of the gate, so I'm glad I applied at home just before making my drive, as that gave it time to settle before arriving.
I get a super fresh, clean, soapy and slightly floral set of notes. That's pretty much it, very simple to my nose, but effective. Drydown didn't change a huge amount, just that some of the top notes obviously receded, but it stayed fairly linear.
The earlier references I've seen to Mugler Cologne seem to hold up. I happen to have my bottle of MC in my desk drawer, and I took a couple of spot checks to compare the two today. Open wasn't identical - although both are very nice - but as they each dry down, I swear the gap closes to almost nothing. Don't ask me to explain it, they just come across as very similar to me.
As for reports of short longevity, I can report that this wearing lasted me the whole business day, PLUS. I'd brought a sample of Creed's Himalaya, with the intent of applying it sometime in the afternoon to get 2 wearings in today. At 5:00pm, I literally had to wash the Neroli Portofino off before I could apply the Himalaya. It was close to my skin, but still hanging on very admirably, and staying composed at that point. That's an 9.5hr day, at the point I washed it off. I believe it would've made 10+ hours no problems, and it was strong enough that the girlfriend would've definitely noticed it.
So, net-net, I really enjoyed Neroli Portofino. Would I buy a FB based on this wearing? No. Mugler Cologne is so much less expensive and yet so good in comparison, it'd be hard to justify. However, I would like to get another larger decant to continue trying NP against some of the other similar frags: Atelier's Grand Neroli, and Creed's Neroli Savauge being the ones that jump off the page as requiring a comparison.
I'll update as I get more intel.
Pros: Super fresh/clean, long-lasting
Cons: Price point, not complex
Bright zesty orange blossoms warmed by a lashing of amber in the base. What's there not to like? If I'm after the best bang for the buck, NEROLI PORTOFINO will not even be in the running. But this is a fragrance review after all, not a price comparison and I like how effervescent it makes me feel. Though I wish it has more of a herbal kick up front I can't deny it a 'thumbs up'.
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Nice fragrance! The longevity on this one is very good. Soapy smelling (expensive soap), but overall a very fresh smelling cologne. One of the best in the Tom Ford collection. Women will like this one also!
wow. this one wakes you up. like some kind of zesty kick in the face. theneroli is absolutel fantastic, probably the kind of thing other perfume houses will water down and turn into something frankly less ballsy. longevity and sillage are a joy.
It's not my favorite citrusy scent, and lacks the sharp citrus of, say, Concentre d'Orange Vert (my fave). But it is good, and I've received lots of compliments. The only negative so far is that it has below average longevity, though it projects well while it lasts.
19th June, 2012 (last edited: 05th July, 2012)
Fresh, young, smart, perfect for a summer daily use wherever you go from a beach in Mykonos to dance in Ibiza.
You can drive your DB9 forgetting you are reaching the 40's ^_^
05th May, 2012 (last edited: 09th May, 2012)
A very nice barbershop-clean scent -- simple and satisfying.
It starts with gorgeous orange blossom and very zesty citrus notes. The scent is light and invigorating, and also quite smooth. There is a hint of wood bark which is typical of orange blossom. Splash this one with abandon, and re-apply often. Good longevity, essentially a cheery orange blossom and soapy scent.
This opens up nicely with fresh bergamot which I am a fan of.
A flowery/soapy scent quickly develops behind the opening which is not unique per se.
This is a very very safe scent in his line up. No special magic with the blend.
It lasts very long on my skin and has good enough projection. A clear spring/summer fragrance that deserves a little warmth to truly stimulate and give effect to the ingredients.
Would I buy it?
No. I appreciate the quality I am getting here but there are other houses doing a far better job with bergamot and citrus in general. I would rather pay them to do the spring/summer job.
To me, the Private Blend range should focus on what they do best, namely darker fragrances that truly stand out in evenings or in the fall/winter months.
I just wanted to mention that longetivity for this is truly superb. Most summer fragrances get absorbed on me very quickly. I am pondering over a purchase more and more.
Absolutely love the fragrance but sadly I don't get the longevity that so many people praise it for....... :-(
Wasn't expecting to like this fragrance....but when I wear it I smile and hear the song the girl from Iipanema in my head. Very modern and yet nostalgic...an homage to the refined glamor of the 50's and 60's. Think James Bond Sean Connery.
Beautiful neroli scent - quite lasting . I find it intensely soapy actually which is a good thing.
Crisp and clean, masculine and sexy. The perfect scent for a crisp, clean white button down shirt, and a warm weather go-to for me. I think that this is an understated scent, and as such an underrated frag on the BN forums. I have a number of other niche scents that elicit positive reactions, but sometimes there's something to say for just smelling "clean," and this is one of the very best I've come across in this regard.
Also, TFPB NP is probably worth buying before it is re-released as a Tom Ford "spa scent" with a higher price tag attached to it. If you're not averse to using eBay to score frags, you can generally find this one for not much more than 100usd/50ml, which isn't bad at all by Tom Ford standards.
This is the classic Eau de Cologne formula, only nuclear-powered. Projects well and lasts all day and never really loses those fresh notes. Amazing.
13th December, 2010 (last edited: 30th March, 2011)
Does Portofino smell a certain way? Like the bitter strain of perfumer's bergamot and windswept, blooming neroli?
I mean, I have never been there, but this year I have smelled both Dior's 'Escale a Portifino' and this one from Tom Ford, 'Neroli Portofino'. And they smell just alike. Well, 'Neroli' has slightly more neroli...
Well, it smells nice in Portofino, I guess... like a wholesome, twenty-year-old French beauty with full wavy brown hair, dressed in a fashionable beige linen summer dress, circa 1983... shaking out her umbrella in a first class night train.
I don't understand the negative reviews of this. I'm not a huge fan of many of the Tom Ford line but this one was a real stand-out for me. Many have tried to make a big, rich flower and amber accord but most have ended up too thick or too sweet and cloying. This for me gets the balance perfectly right. Powerful but subtle and most importantly, it gets positive comments from the ladies...
20th July, 2009 (last edited: 10th September, 2009)
The sweetest and most flowery of the Tom Ford collection, this orange blossom is fantastic! That tiny little flower opens this frag with a bang, and then a nice little suprise of citrusy lemon joins in for a fresh & bright white floral treat! It gives me the impression of Goutal's Eau d'Hadrien being infused with neroli ~ completely beautiful! Did I mention it is sweet? Even so, it isn't a bit cloying IMO! Excellent sillage and longevity for a citrus/floral. I highly recommend trying this little gem.
I rather enjoy this one. The opening is without a doubt a very heavy yet airy Neroli which seems to stay throughout the entire drydown process. As it starts to develop a few more florals lightly come out. Next, a VERY nice crisp citrus note that reminds me of the smell of orange and lemon fruit stripe gum starts to dominate for a little while (a stage I find extremely satisfying)! Lastly, the bottom amber notes become more apparent ending in a very sensual and almost effervescent way. All the while the scent never, ever comes close to being a let down - every step is a good one.
Brilliant work. Thanks, Tom :-)