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  1. #1

    Default My new love - Parfums de Nicolai

    Here, in basenotes, there is a strange relation with Parfums de Nicolai: this perfume house is respectable but only a few basenoters have Nicolai scents. The most popular is New York, but others scents are not very known.
    The same was with me: I thought that these scents are well made but I didn't consider buying them.
    And recently something changed. I started to appreciate them. There is a very clear signature of Parfums de Nicolai: some citruses, cinnamon, vanilla, amber. The drydown sweet and soft. Patricia de Nicolai is a real creature - she has a very clear vision of her scents, her asthetic sense is not influenced with mass trends.

    My first purchase - Patchouli homme. It's like an interpretation of Guerlain's Heritage. Not very patchoulant. Very old school, very masculine. Excellent longevity and sillage.

    The other one which is very nice on my skin - Le Temps d'une fete
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  2. #2

    Default Re: My new love - Parfums de Nicolai

    Heritage? What? It smells absolutely NOTHING like Heritage, neither is it particularly masculine. It's like a combination of Black Aoud and no. 88 with the rosed plumped up. Very plush and feminine.
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  3. #3

    Default Re: My new love - Parfums de Nicolai

    I share your enthusiasm for this house. I've sampled a few of her feminine scents, enjoyed them, and have now ordered some of the male ones. Can't wait.

  4. #4

    Default Re: My new love - Parfums de Nicolai

    I am also planning to explore more from Paricia Nicolai. I love New York and I'm very glad I bought Odalisque a while back because it appears from posts elsewhere this one may have been reformulated due to Oakmoss content,

    I am going to work thru others in her line as I find her stuff is, for want of a better description, 'not obvious'. A perfumer who is clearly schooled in real tradition, growing up with the Guerlain family, and taking her own creative direction without any seeming need to knock out the world with packaging and marketing. If anything this is one house that might benefit from better marketing, although it looks like the income more than covers their need for uncompromised qulaity of ingredients and no rush to get new product out there in time for Xmas.

    I also recently bought Patchouli Homme and with regard to the comment below about Patchouli Homme I feel compelled to reply (as I sit here with Heritage on one hand and Patchouli Homme on the other) in the interests of discussion, rather than 'pronouncement'.

    Quote Originally Posted by mtgprox05 View Post
    Heritage? What? It smells absolutely NOTHING like Heritage, neither is it particularly masculine. It's like a combination of Black Aoud and no. 88 with the rosed plumped up. Very plush and feminine.
    Perhaps you could have qualified this rather explosive remark with 'IMO' mtg?

    I own all 4 mentioned in your post and wear them from time to time and while I don't personally get a strong link between Heritage and Patchouli Homme I can see how someone might mention it as an 'interpretation' due to some association he or she finds between the two. I also agree with the OP that PH is not particularly patchoulant and it is quite masculine.

    Personally I see absolutely no resemblance between Patchouli Homme and Black Auod & CS 88 - zero - let alone a similarity with the roses pumped up? And 'plush and feminine'? I actually find Patchouli Homme more 'astringent masculine'.

    To each his own and it's all subjective, of course

  5. #5

    Default Re: My new love - Parfums de Nicolai

    Well...I agree that PH is really not "just like" Heritage, but it does have some similarity of structure (herbal, fougere-like beginning and an oriental ending). I really did not perceive PH as a unisex fragrance--its main common thread is a powerful pepper note that lingered on my skin for more than 24 hours and through a shower. Overall, its tendency is toward spice and wood, and is very dry.

    As for resemblance with Black Oud or C&S 88, I think spices and woods are common to all three, but these compositions are miles apart from PH. For one thing, I was not able to detect a prominent rose in PH.

    The closest fragrance I could really think of was Miller Harris' Cuir d'Oranger for the pepper and dry woods. However, Cd'O has a mossy note that works so much better for me than the blaring geranium of PH.

    And by the way, Le Temps d'Une Fete is outstanding, and I love it too. It is somewhat like a less oily, more modern version of Guerlain Chamade.
    Last edited by Asha; 6th December 2009 at 05:07 AM.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: My new love - Parfums de Nicolai

    I feel the same way about Histoires de Parfums and I generally see 'obscure but well made' fragrances as a BIG positive. I'm still waiting to sample my first PdN. The prices seem reasonable and judging by the reviews, they seem to offer excellent value.

  7. #7

    Default Re: My new love - Parfums de Nicolai

    From her line, I've only smelled New York, which surely prevails BdG in every way. FB's coming soon... I also look forward to sampling recomendations I've read from you all PdN lovers/admirers.

    P/s: I wonder how to order from her official website? or any online store carry PdN (no LS, thanks!)

  8. #8

    Default Re: My new love - Parfums de Nicolai

    PdN is my new love too. Baladin is a wonderful herbal leather. Vanille Tonka and Maharadjah are very Guerlainesque - the former is a slightly dry smoky vanilla with incense and Maharadja very spicy and opulent - similar in spirit to Jicky.

    I found Patchoulli Homme (soon to be renamed Patchoulli Intense as so many women buy it for themslelves) very green, astingent and suave.

    Vie de Chateau would be wonderful on a man, it's a clasy old style chypre with a modern take and has notes of hay, tabacco and grapefruit.

    The official website often seems to be out of stock of many of the products so the best option is to call your nearest store.

  9. #9

    Default Re: My new love - Parfums de Nicolai

    I am impressed by the positive opinions Nicolai's scents elicit from BNs and am going to go forward with obtaining samples of several.

  10. #10

    Default Re: My new love - Parfums de Nicolai

    I wore New York today and I believe that it is one of the best in it's genre!

    I also have Vetyver and Balle de Match. I have to say that I didn't like Vetyver too much after some time, though it's still pleasant. Balle de Match has a great opening, but the drydown approaches Vetyver in some way.

    I also sampled the Vanille Tonka, but it didn't work for me. The tonka (I think) leaves some sour note on my skin.

    Patchouli Homme sounds interesting particularly if it isn't overly strong with the patchouli.

  11. #11

    Default Re: My new love - Parfums de Nicolai

    Parfums de Nicolaï certainly stands for quality of materials and intelligence. I've owned Maharanih, Maharadjah, New York, Odalisque and Cologne Solange. However, the generic bottles and the lack of coloring of the juice always made me so depressed that I sold them off. They smell glorious, but look like they're they were designed for residents of the GDR.
    Last edited by Kevin Guyer; 6th December 2009 at 12:24 PM.

  12. #12

    Default Re: My new love - Parfums de Nicolai

    Quote Originally Posted by mr. reasonable View Post
    I am also planning to explore more from Paricia Nicolai. I love New York and I'm very glad I bought Odalisque a while back because it appears from posts elsewhere this one may have been reformulated due to Oakmoss content,

    I am going to work thru others in her line as I find her stuff is, for want of a better description, 'not obvious'. A perfumer who is clearly schooled in real tradition, growing up with the Guerlain family, and taking her own creative direction without any seeming need to knock out the world with packaging and marketing. If anything this is one house that might benefit from better marketing, although it looks like the income more than covers their need for uncompromised qulaity of ingredients and no rush to get new product out there in time for Xmas.

    I also recently bought Patchouli Homme and with regard to the comment below about Patchouli Homme I feel compelled to reply (as I sit here with Heritage on one hand and Patchouli Homme on the other) in the interests of discussion, rather than 'pronouncement'.



    Perhaps you could have qualified this rather explosive remark with 'IMO' mtg?

    I own all 4 mentioned in your post and wear them from time to time and while I don't personally get a strong link between Heritage and Patchouli Homme I can see how someone might mention it as an 'interpretation' due to some association he or she finds between the two. I also agree with the OP that PH is not particularly patchoulant and it is quite masculine.

    Personally I see absolutely no resemblance between Patchouli Homme and Black Auod & CS 88 - zero - let alone a similarity with the roses pumped up? And 'plush and feminine'? I actually find Patchouli Homme more 'astringent masculine'.

    To each his own and it's all subjective, of course
    You are correct, I'll add IMO, I apologize. However, again IMO, I found absolutely zero masculinity in this one, it was rose rose and more rose on my skin, smelling incredibly old school French feminine to me.
    Last edited by mtgprox05; 6th December 2009 at 12:43 PM.
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  13. #13
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    Default Re: My new love - Parfums de Nicolai

    I really enjoy:

    New York
    Maharadjah
    Patchouli Homme
    Please feel free to check out my Swap Thread - Patou pour Homme, L'Instant de Guerlain PH Extreme, Dior Homme Intense, Pure Malt, Pure Coffee and many more! Click Here For My Swap Thread

  14. #14

    Default Re: My new love - Parfums de Nicolai

    Well, I'm going to agree with everyone. Yes, something in Patricia de Nicolai's style does seem very traditional and French. Partly it's her love of complexity. Many niche houses seem to have been formed to cater to the tastes of an anti-perfume moment in perfumery, and therefore make perfumes that seem less like perfumes in some ways and more like natural smells. Of course, they're not natural smells but they do give the feeling of reducing to a single moment in nature, somehow or are at least focused around a single ingredient. The difficulty of isolating notes in Patchouli Homme tells us a lot about how de Nicolai composes. She is often working with a base, I believe, that includes spices and that sour/green/leather accord that shows up all over the place. I think it's this base set against the rose and patch in PH that make PH an abstract work, rather than a naturalist work. (Aren't I stealing from Turin here? Anyone remember where he talks about naturalist v. abstract, if I've got that right?)
    I love PdN's stuff, too, and I'll go even farther and say that I can't think of another house that is advancing the traditional style at the moment. Many of the great minds in contemporary perfumery are still running the other way in the direction of sheer, minimalist anti-perfumes (I'm thinking of Ellena and Duchafour, here, and certainly want to acknowledge their brilliance in the same breath: they're wonderful). De Nicolai is working the old style to new effect. Before Patchouli Homme I had not been taken aback and then charmed and finally smitten since maybe L'Air du Desert Marocain. Perfumery should be many things, including comforting, sonorous, and true to life. But one of the things that art must do is make us uncomfortable, and this is done most strikingly when it's done without ostentation. When the new thing that you see draws attention not to some quirk of personality in the creator, but makes you wonder whether you've seen the world rightly: makes you go back to reality itself and smell it with new openness and humility.
    Patchouli Homme has me f*cked up, spun around, the way a work of art does only once every several years, if I'm lucky.

  15. #15

    Default Re: My new love - Parfums de Nicolai

    Quote Originally Posted by Strollyourlobster View Post
    Well, I'm going to agree with everyone. Yes, something in Patricia de Nicolai's style does seem very traditional and French. Partly it's her love of complexity. Many niche houses seem to have been formed to cater to the tastes of an anti-perfume moment in perfumery, and therefore make perfumes that seem less like perfumes in some ways and more like natural smells. Of course, they're not natural smells but they do give the feeling of reducing to a single moment in nature, somehow or are at least focused around a single ingredient. The difficulty of isolating notes in Patchouli Homme tells us a lot about how de Nicolai composes. She is often working with a base, I believe, that includes spices and that sour/green/leather accord that shows up all over the place. I think it's this base set against the rose and patch in PH that make PH an abstract work, rather than a naturalist work. (Aren't I stealing from Turin here? Anyone remember where he talks about naturalist v. abstract, if I've got that right?)
    I love PdN's stuff, too, and I'll go even farther and say that I can't think of another house that is advancing the traditional style at the moment. Many of the great minds in contemporary perfumery are still running the other way in the direction of sheer, minimalist anti-perfumes (I'm thinking of Ellena and Duchafour, here, and certainly want to acknowledge their brilliance in the same breath: they're wonderful). De Nicolai is working the old style to new effect. Before Patchouli Homme I had not been taken aback and then charmed and finally smitten since maybe L'Air du Desert Marocain. Perfumery should be many things, including comforting, sonorous, and true to life. But one of the things that art must do is make us uncomfortable, and this is done most strikingly when it's done without ostentation. When the new thing that you see draws attention not to some quirk of personality in the creator, but makes you wonder whether you've seen the world rightly: makes you go back to reality itself and smell it with new openness and humility.
    Patchouli Homme has me f*cked up, spun around, the way a work of art does only once every several years, if I'm lucky.
    Brilliant analysis, well done! I'm certainly more of a believer in traditional, classical perfumery than the minimalist, gilded lily approach. I remember reading in The Guide that Lutens has been accused, by some great old school nose, of creating bases and not finished fragrances. The autistic tendencies of Iris Silver Mist, A la Nuit and MKK, to a lesser extent, tend to emphasize this argument. I often see perfumery as following the arc of classical music, the road from Bach to Glass. Bach's repetition always had beauty, purpose and a resolution, while a Philip Glass composition seems to be more about excitement played until exhaustion, sort of what I get out of Iris Silver Mist and much of the work from Ellena.
    Last edited by Kevin Guyer; 7th December 2009 at 11:43 AM.

  16. #16

    Default Re: My new love - Parfums de Nicolai

    Quote Originally Posted by Strollyourlobster View Post
    Well, I'm going to agree with everyone. Yes, something in Patricia de Nicolai's style does seem very traditional and French. Partly it's her love of complexity. Many niche houses seem to have been formed to cater to the tastes of an anti-perfume moment in perfumery, and therefore make perfumes that seem less like perfumes in some ways and more like natural smells. Of course, they're not natural smells but they do give the feeling of reducing to a single moment in nature, somehow or are at least focused around a single ingredient. The difficulty of isolating notes in Patchouli Homme tells us a lot about how de Nicolai composes. She is often working with a base, I believe, that includes spices and that sour/green/leather accord that shows up all over the place. I think it's this base set against the rose and patch in PH that make PH an abstract work, rather than a naturalist work. (Aren't I stealing from Turin here? Anyone remember where he talks about naturalist v. abstract, if I've got that right?)
    I love PdN's stuff, too, and I'll go even farther and say that I can't think of another house that is advancing the traditional style at the moment. Many of the great minds in contemporary perfumery are still running the other way in the direction of sheer, minimalist anti-perfumes (I'm thinking of Ellena and Duchafour, here, and certainly want to acknowledge their brilliance in the same breath: they're wonderful). De Nicolai is working the old style to new effect. Before Patchouli Homme I had not been taken aback and then charmed and finally smitten since maybe L'Air du Desert Marocain. Perfumery should be many things, including comforting, sonorous, and true to life. But one of the things that art must do is make us uncomfortable, and this is done most strikingly when it's done without ostentation. When the new thing that you see draws attention not to some quirk of personality in the creator, but makes you wonder whether you've seen the world rightly: makes you go back to reality itself and smell it with new openness and humility.
    Patchouli Homme has me f*cked up, spun around, the way a work of art does only once every several years, if I'm lucky.
    You should post more often Strollyourlobster. This is really incisive writing, and I found my self nodding my head in concurrence at every point. Many thanks.

    scentementa
    l

  17. #17

    Default Re: My new love - Parfums de Nicolai

    Quote Originally Posted by Strollyourlobster View Post
    Well, I'm going to agree with everyone. Yes, something in Patricia de Nicolai's style does seem very traditional and French. Partly it's her love of complexity. Many niche houses seem to have been formed to cater to the tastes of an anti-perfume moment in perfumery, and therefore make perfumes that seem less like perfumes in some ways and more like natural smells. Of course, they're not natural smells but they do give the feeling of reducing to a single moment in nature, somehow or are at least focused around a single ingredient. The difficulty of isolating notes in Patchouli Homme tells us a lot about how de Nicolai composes. She is often working with a base, I believe, that includes spices and that sour/green/leather accord that shows up all over the place. I think it's this base set against the rose and patch in PH that make PH an abstract work, rather than a naturalist work. (Aren't I stealing from Turin here? Anyone remember where he talks about naturalist v. abstract, if I've got that right?)
    I love PdN's stuff, too, and I'll go even farther and say that I can't think of another house that is advancing the traditional style at the moment. Many of the great minds in contemporary perfumery are still running the other way in the direction of sheer, minimalist anti-perfumes (I'm thinking of Ellena and Duchafour, here, and certainly want to acknowledge their brilliance in the same breath: they're wonderful). De Nicolai is working the old style to new effect. Before Patchouli Homme I had not been taken aback and then charmed and finally smitten since maybe L'Air du Desert Marocain. Perfumery should be many things, including comforting, sonorous, and true to life. But one of the things that art must do is make us uncomfortable, and this is done most strikingly when it's done without ostentation. When the new thing that you see draws attention not to some quirk of personality in the creator, but makes you wonder whether you've seen the world rightly: makes you go back to reality itself and smell it with new openness and humility.
    Patchouli Homme has me f*cked up, spun around, the way a work of art does only once every several years, if I'm lucky.
    I loved reading this Strolly. Beautifully written, thought provoking. Kind of like PdN fragrances themselves.

  18. #18

    Thumbs up Re: My new love - Parfums de Nicolai

    Quote Originally Posted by Strollyourlobster View Post
    Well, I'm going to agree with everyone. Yes, something in Patricia de Nicolai's style does seem very traditional and French. Partly it's her love of complexity. Many niche houses seem to have been formed to cater to the tastes of an anti-perfume moment in perfumery, and therefore make perfumes that seem less like perfumes in some ways and more like natural smells. Of course, they're not natural smells but they do give the feeling of reducing to a single moment in nature, somehow or are at least focused around a single ingredient. The difficulty of isolating notes in Patchouli Homme tells us a lot about how de Nicolai composes. She is often working with a base, I believe, that includes spices and that sour/green/leather accord that shows up all over the place. I think it's this base set against the rose and patch in PH that make PH an abstract work, rather than a naturalist work. (Aren't I stealing from Turin here? Anyone remember where he talks about naturalist v. abstract, if I've got that right?)
    I love PdN's stuff, too, and I'll go even farther and say that I can't think of another house that is advancing the traditional style at the moment. Many of the great minds in contemporary perfumery are still running the other way in the direction of sheer, minimalist anti-perfumes (I'm thinking of Ellena and Duchafour, here, and certainly want to acknowledge their brilliance in the same breath: they're wonderful). De Nicolai is working the old style to new effect. Before Patchouli Homme I had not been taken aback and then charmed and finally smitten since maybe L'Air du Desert Marocain. Perfumery should be many things, including comforting, sonorous, and true to life. But one of the things that art must do is make us uncomfortable, and this is done most strikingly when it's done without ostentation. When the new thing that you see draws attention not to some quirk of personality in the creator, but makes you wonder whether you've seen the world rightly: makes you go back to reality itself and smell it with new openness and humility.
    Patchouli Homme has me f*cked up, spun around, the way a work of art does only once every several years, if I'm lucky.
    WOW K !!!!!!!!! Love your post !!!!!
    Have I told you about the scent of jasmine? Have I spoken about the smell of the sea? The earth is scented. And I perfume myself to enhance what I am. That's why I can not wear a perfume that bothers me. Perfuming is an instinctive wisdom. And like all art, it requires some knowledge of yourself..."
    Clarice Lispector ( 1920-1977) - Perfumes da Terra / Earth
    Perfumes

  19. #19

    Default Re: My new love - Parfums de Nicolai

    The only complaint about Nicolai - recent names of perfumes:
    Patchouli homme - Geranium pour monsieur. I think such a scent as Patchouli homme could have an abstract name, not the name of ingredient which is not even very prominent.

    Violete in love - Love in white
    "PLAIN LIVING, HIGH THINKING" O.W., De Profundis
    Real beauty: 1) Frederic Malle 1-20 2) Chanel Egoiste 3) YSL Opium pour Homme edp 4) TF Noir de Noir

    Noses: 1) Jacques Cavallier 2) Maurice Roucel

  20. #20

    Default Re: My new love - Parfums de Nicolai

    I apologize if I am committing a faux pas by bringing this up in this thread, but I wanted to mention that I have a bottle of Vie de Chateu by Parfum de Nicolai (100ml - 75%) available for swap. It's a beautiful scent but I found that I just sort of moved in a different direction.

    Anyway, if anybody's interested, please check out my swap list to see if we can work something out. Thanks!
    TOP 10
    1. Eau Noire Cologne by Christian Dior
    2. Lumière Noire pour Homme by Maison Francis Kurkdjian
    3. New Haarlem by Bond No. 9
    4. Chergui by Serge Lutens Les Salons du Palais Royal Shiseido
    5. Francois Charles by Rance 1795
    6. Puro Intense by Nejma
    7. Usiku by Jo Wood Organics
    8. New York by Parfums de Nicolai
    9. Dia For Men by Amouage
    10. Silver Mountain Water by Creed

    Check out my huge niche swap list at http://community.basenotes.net/showthread.php?t=239240

  21. #21

    Default Re: My new love - Parfums de Nicolai

    Quote Originally Posted by Strollyourlobster View Post
    Before Patchouli Homme I had not been taken aback and then charmed and finally smitten since maybe L'Air du Desert Marocain. Perfumery should be many things, including comforting, sonorous, and true to life. But one of the things that art must do is make us uncomfortable, and this is done most strikingly when it's done without ostentation. When the new thing that you see draws attention not to some quirk of personality in the creator, but makes you wonder whether you've seen the world rightly: makes you go back to reality itself and smell it with new openness and humility.
    Patchouli Homme has me f*cked up, spun around, the way a work of art does only once every several years, if I'm lucky.

    Thats one hell of a compelling review...i'll buy my bottle of Patchouli Homme purely based on this review and ofcourse, my undying love of PdN's works. Thnx SyL!

  22. #22

    Default Re: My new love - Parfums de Nicolai

    I have only recently sampled New York and I have to say I love it. I will definitely be sampling more from her. I really enjoyed how slowly New York evolved, spending large amounts of time in each stage. I've worn it three times, with each wearing lasting about 10+ hours on me. And all day long I found it changing and yet staying the same. I haven't really experienced this in quite some time. I really found it beautiful and quite a piece of work.

  23. #23

    Default Re: My new love - Parfums de Nicolai

    Thanks, all. Really gratifying response.
    Jen, definitely try it first if that's possible there. I do think you'll love it, though, based on your love of Mazzolari Lui and other similarly intense and dramatic scents. I'll look forward to hearing other perspectives on this stuff.

  24. #24

    Default Re: My new love - Parfums de Nicolai

    RE: Odalisque having had a recent oakmoss-ectomy. I fear it's true, because the descriptions on beautyhabit and luckyscent used to really emphasize this ingredient and now there's not a word of it.

    Another one that is probably up for having the oakmoss vacuumed right out of it is Eclipse, a "dark" lily of the valley green floral. Glad I grabbed my two bottles long ago.

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