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  1. #1
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    moltening's Avatar
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    Lightbulb Parfum d'Empire -- Taking the Idea of a Top, Heart, and Base to New Extremes

    Recently, I've grown accustomed and familiar to Parfum d'Empire's scents. I've tried the entire line and now own 3 full bottles from them. (Cuir Ottoman, Ambre Russe, Eau de Gloire) What I have to say is that I've never seen a line where scents evolve noticeably this much. There is not a single one in the line that is what one would call as 'linear.' Marc Antoine Corticchiato has taken the idea of top, heart, and basenotes to new extremes.

    It's very interesting to see scents like Eau de Gloire evolve from the Eau de Cologne-esque top with no signs of what's to come (seriously, no signs) and then suddenly turning into a blend of tobacco/anise/leather with tea the next time you sniff it 10 minutes later. Cuir Ottoman also has the ability to turn from balsamic fruity powder to animalic leather with a very iris-prominent stage somewhere in between. Ambre Russe only starts smelling like a proper 'amber' fragrance one hours in, then comes the candyfloss in 15 minutes. There are even some stages in Fougere Bengale early on that would make you go "Aha! Eau Noire!" then a little while later.. "Where'd the Eau Noire go? What's with all this sweetness going on here?"

    However, I feel that the "split personalities" character of this house's scents may be a turn-off for some and instead of being a good thing, a flaw. (e.g. I wish the heart stage in Ambre Russe would last longer. The richness fades too quickly) Personally, I enjoy wearing them very and feel that they should be tried by people who like to watch scents change. One more thing, Corticchiato seems to like 'saltiness' as almost all of the scents have a salty element added in to the blend.

    Overall, a very interesting house. Not the best and some even seem like a rehash of what's been done before, like Aziyade being an easier to wear fizzy Arabie, but considering the price and contrasting with the '$200+ for 100ml' houses like Profumum or Humiecki and Graef, this is a pretty good achievement. (although the marketing is kinda "eh?" and the bottle not really my cup of tea)


    What are your thoughts on this house? Also, are there any frags you can think of that goes through extreme changes?
    Last edited by moltening; 31st January 2009 at 03:49 AM.

  2. #2

    Amit's Avatar
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    Default Re: Parfum d'Empire -- Taking the Idea of a Top, Heart, and Base to New Extremes

    I must be in the minority because I surely do love their bottles. Ambre Russe used to be one of my preferred boozy ambers but it lost out to Parfumerie Generale L'Ombre Fauve as I discovered I like my ambers musky and animalic

    I haven't tested Arabie but I kind of like Aziyade, love that raw spicy opening explosion of ginger, cardamom, cumin laced with plenty of patchouli. Not sure I whether I'd need a FB of this though.


    PVC and Leather. A Chain and a feather




  3. #3
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    Default Re: Parfum d'Empire -- Taking the Idea of a Top, Heart, and Base to New Extremes

    I love Iskander and have a sample of Eau de Glorie, very nice, fresh take on cologne.
    Evenstar

  4. #4

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    Default Re: Parfum d'Empire -- Taking the Idea of a Top, Heart, and Base to New Extremes

    As to the evolving, I agree with you. But the three samples (Cuir Ottoman, Fougere Bengale, Equistrius ) didn't impress me at all. FB was almost an immediate wash-off, simply turned my stomach up. Equistrius was a kind of sweet mess, and rather cloying on my skin. CO was perhaps just too dry a leather for my taste.
    Last edited by Sandy; 31st January 2009 at 05:34 AM.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Parfum d'Empire -- Taking the Idea of a Top, Heart, and Base to New Extremes

    i have tested Fougere Bengale & Ambre Russe. both are top notch scents, no doubt about it.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Parfum d'Empire -- Taking the Idea of a Top, Heart, and Base to New Extremes

    I like PdE for the same reason you do. I'm smitten with Fougere Bengale. Ambre Russe is pretty good, as is Iskander. Cuir Ottoman gives me a headache no more than 5 minutes after application though.

  7. #7
    peevish_yolk's Avatar
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    Default Re: Parfum d'Empire -- Taking the Idea of a Top, Heart, and Base to New Extremes

    Quote Originally Posted by moltening
    I've never seen a line where scents evolve noticeably this much.
    I certainly share this impression with you. It is really amazing how they change with the time.
    I have in my wardrobe Ambre Russe (which I love) and Cuir Ottoman (which I like). Thanks to my best friend (he is also a BN member) I got the samples of Eau de Gloire and Fougère Bengale. All four are high-class, that is for sure.
    I am impressed how extreme feelings Fougère Bengale induces. Some of the people around me adore it (I do, as well), and some of them despise it (so I absolutely understand Sandy’s reaction). It seems that it only cannot provoke the indifference, which is OK, as far as I am concerned. A female colleague had a very weird comment on Fougère Bengale:”It doesn’t smell as a fragrance, at all”… whatever that means…
    The_good_life said once about Eau de Gloire that it is “a high-quality, soulless perfume” and that is probably the best definition of it. However, sometimes in my life, I need exactly a scent with the mentioned attributes so I will probably buy this one.
    Oh, and just like javagreen, I love their bottles.
    “As if everyone, all over the world, had his daily visually artistic task; the task of being an image for others.” Peter Handke

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Parfum d'Empire -- Taking the Idea of a Top, Heart, and Base to New Extremes

    I have only tried Iskander so far. It smells very nice to me, but is the most skin-hugging scent I have ever tried. Literally have to put nose to skin to get it after the opening.

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Parfum d'Empire -- Taking the Idea of a Top, Heart, and Base to New Extremes

    I love when a scent goes through twists and turns like the PdE scents I have tried. They tell a story.

    I have decants of Ambre Russe and Cuir Ottoman and have also sampled (and liked) Eau de Glorie, Eau Suave, Equistrius, and Fourge Bengale. I have not seen a bottle IRL, but I sort of like their simplicity.
    I've trademarked the color bleu

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Parfum d'Empire -- Taking the Idea of a Top, Heart, and Base to New Extremes

    Strangely, Fougere Bengale is the one that I am still on the fence about. I'm not sure what to make of it yet, but boy is it sweet. Looks like AR and CO seem to get the most love around these parts!

    General house longevity for me is decent, but can't beat the masters like Profumum.

    Don't get me wrong about the bottles. They are very well-done, firm, and not tacky, but just... well, not my cup of tea. Maybe I'm not used to the cylindrical shape yet with all these 'quadrilateral' bottles in the 'drobe from other houses.
    Last edited by moltening; 1st February 2009 at 05:40 AM.

  11. #11
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    Default Re: Parfum d'Empire -- Taking the Idea of a Top, Heart, and Base to New Extremes

    I've tried Equistrius, Cuir Ottoman and have a sample of Ambre Russe that is yet to be tried. So far, this house does not impress me what so ever. I thought Cuir Ottoman to be an absolutely awful, poorly composed scent that seemed to escape the lab before the nose had time to finish the scent. In fact, I disliked it so much it is one of only a select few scents that I have rated at 1 star and that is only because I couldn't give it any less. Equistrius was better... but not by much, it seemed a little off balance as if the nose was trying to do too much with the scent but didn't really have the talent to pull it all together. I hope Ambre Russe improves upon the two I have tried.
    Last edited by surreality; 1st February 2009 at 06:03 PM.
    Seek not the favor of the multitude; it is seldom got by honest and lawful means. But seek the testimony of few; and number not voices, but weigh them. - Immanuel Kant

  12. #12
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    Default Re: Parfum d'Empire -- Taking the Idea of a Top, Heart, and Base to New Extremes

    Iskander had a strong ammonia note--unwearable for me.
    Equistrus I thought was a cloying iris mess.
    Fougere Bengal was too much like curry for my tastes.
    Cuir Ottoman smelled like liquid smoke--nauseating.

    3 that I sampled briefly and are worth a 2nd sniff: Aziyade, Yuzu Fou, Eau Suave

    1 that I have a large decant of and am happy with (may buy a FB eventually): Osmanthus Interdite

    The only one I own a FB of: Ambre Russe (love it)

    I have not tried Eau de Gloire, but I have a sample.

    Of the two I wear regularly, I agree that Ambre Russe has a great development. It changes alot but never loses character. Osmanthus Interdite is quite a bit more linear--tea, osmanthus, leather and peach in varying degrees throughout.
    Last edited by Asha; 2nd February 2009 at 02:14 AM.

  13. #13

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    Default Re: Parfum d'Empire -- Taking the Idea of a Top, Heart, and Base to New Extremes

    I have decants and very much enjoy Cuir Ottoman (good leather development), Ambre Russe, Iskander, and Osmanthus Interdite. Ambre Russe and Iskander look like they are FBW.

  14. #14

    Default Re: Parfum d'Empire -- Taking the Idea of a Top, Heart, and Base to New Extremes

    I am wearing Yuzu Fou right now - my first PdE sample - and I like it. I am not sure I'll ever get it, though, which is because of the price in combination with the fact that it very very much feels like a less sweet twin of Concentree d'Orange Verte. Citrus fruits, mint and hints of wood, that's the official definition of both. The PdE is supposed to additionally have white musk, but I can't make that out. Instead, Yuzu Fou has more topnote sparkle going on, a bit like Blenheim Bouquet's top.

    The current weather doesn't permit a reasonable longevity assessment yet, so that has to wait. So far it has typical citrus longevity. There doesn't seem to be much development besides the fading out of the different citrus facets, so this might be the exception to the rule.

  15. #15
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    Default Re: Parfum d'Empire -- Taking the Idea of a Top, Heart, and Base to New Extremes

    I ADORE Fougere Bengale and Ambre Russe, and love Cuir Ottoman. Eau Gloire is too dry and harsh for me, but interesting.

    I like every stage of Ambre Russe and Fougere Bengale, though I really wish the latter could last longer. i will eventually need a full bottle of both. Fougere Bengale is my number one immortelle fragrance, and Ambre Russe is my all-time favorite amber.

    Cuir Ottoman is my favorite leather fragrance, but it's too sweet to be my IDEAL leather fragrance ( have yet to find that one ). This is a hybrid leather-iris fragrance to me, and there is a distinct iris phase in the base where all the leathery aspects disappear.

    Eau Gloire is discordant and herbal, too much so to be an eau de cologne but isn't really a green fragrance either. I think it fits squarely into the category of "garrigue" style frags, being herbal and spicy in that distinct way.

    Haven't tried any of the other PdE's.

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