Noir Epices and Portrait of a Lady: both are dry and sophisticated, just lightly floral
Hi there guys, I'm new here. My name is Alex
I made a board a little while ago discussing the signatures of certain perfume houses, and found out that Frederic Malle's approach is really fascinating, with all of the different perfumers and the lack of restraints they're under creating new fragrances. Because of this, I was curious if anyone who had sampled a lot of his fragrances could note their favorites and why they feel that way. I'm looking for fragrances to put on my wish list for samples, and so any insight would be much appreciated
Noir Epices and Portrait of a Lady: both are dry and sophisticated, just lightly floral
Vetiver extraordinaire: the freshest vetiver around. But it will probably appeal only to vetiver aficionados.
On my wish list, there is also Lys mediterranee (as I don't have a lily yet) and Fleur de cassie (rich animalic floral). But really, all are interesting and worth exploring, whether one ends up liking them or not.
Carnal Flower; surely the most beautiful tuberose it is possible to find, l adore it's "florist's fridge" coolness.
Lys Mediterranee; languid, salty, true lily.
Geranium pour Monsieur; fresh but classy garden mint, perfect for cutting through heat & humidity.
En Passant; true, rain-kissed lilacs.
Musc Ravageur; the intimate, comforting smell of one's ideal lover.
Dans Tes Bras; not my cup of tea, but wonderfully weird!
"What is this secret connection between the soul, and sea, clouds and perfumes? The soul itself appears to be sea, cloud and perfume..." - from Zorba the Greek by Nikos Kazantzakis.
Lys Mediteranee is a gorgeously relaxed lily with salty ocean in the background - it's completely transporting
Dans Tes Bras salty skin and violets - unusual, but a little too intense on the skin for the first couple hours
Une Rose is a beautifully clean almost soapy rose with an earthy mushroom undertone
I could happilylist 4 or 5 more - a house with too many great fragrances to name.
Carnal Flower. You should definately try this. It's kind of a recent classic already. I'll never forget the first
time I smelled it at Barney's. One of the few times I remember a fragrance impressing me that deeply.
It's funny how much less I like it over time. But I never forget those first few samplings.
Parfum de le Theresa, one the perfumer and his other creations. I wore Rochas Femme as a teenager, then in 1989 they changed it and added cumin!!!!! Theresa has most in common with the the one I remember and wore.
L'Eau d'Hiver I have the 100ms in this one. I am a big heliotrope fan.
vetiver extraordinaire - the highest concentration of vetiver that you can find in a perfume, raw, earthy, vegetal, pulls no punches, there's nothing else like it.
french lover (bois d'orage in the states) comes a close second - a most severe, bone dry, cold and hot in the same time, elegant and refined, hard and merciless, incense, woods, cedar, galbanum and angelica, this is what a smartly dressed man in his 40's would wear (probably CEO or running his own company).
Vetiver Extraordinaire (the grassiest of them all)
Une Fleur De Cassie (huge, out of the world indolic floral)
Geranium Pour Monsieur (understated elegance)
L'Eau D'Hiver (just next to Apres L'Ondee)
French Lover (a modern masculine with a twist)
...then the "crowdpleasers"...Portrait Of A Lady, Carnal Flower and Musc Ravageur.
If push came to shove for me it would be Une Fleur de Cassie because it is so unique and it somehow manages to speak of another time altogether - the 1930's for some reason. L'Eau d'Hiver would be second up, especially now that Aprés l'Ondee has been diluted.
Actually Bigarade Concentrée is quite lovely - it sits midway between Déclaration and Terre d'Hermes in Ellena's ongoing riffing with this theme - I like it better than the other two.
Portrait of a Lady
... (of those I have tried): Probably with this one's relative popularity, there's no need to explain, but I'm a shameless slave to patchouli and rose--yes, the pairing has been done ad nauseam, but rarely with such magic, strange precision...like a photograph but elegant and out of time like an early portraiture indeed. I want it to be my signature, but Portrait of a Lady is the only entirely wearable fragrance I have ever been too in awe of to yet wear freely. It's an old style poetic love: courtly.
I'd have to agree with everything teardrop said, too ....that's a great, concise list! However, since you asked about our personal favorites, the three I own are Une Rose, Lipstick Rose and Portrait of a Lady, simply because I love a gorgeous rose perfume and these rosy beauties are three of the very best I've come across.
Science is not only compatible with spirituality, it is a profound source of spirituality. When we recognize our place in an immensity of light-years and in the passage of ages, when we grasp the intricacy, beauty, and subtlety of life, then that soaring feeling, that sense of elation and humility combined, is surely spiritual. ..Carl Sagan
Carnal Flower -- the creamiest tuberose imaginable, it's the one that ushers in summer for me every year.
Une Fleur de Cassie -- wonderfully skanky floral. I saw it described somewhere as a lovely garden with dead bodies. Spot-on description for a fabulous fragrance. This is my go-to February/March floral when I'm dying (hehehe) for spring.
Musc Ravageur -- sweet, spice, and musk. When I feel naughty, I reach for this one.
En Passant -- an amazing springtime lilac. When I feel nice or when there's a gentle spring rain, I reach for this one.
Une Fleur de Cassie - it is in my near future and the sample I have I hoard like no other. I agree with everyone above that from what I have smelled from this house they all are great, not just good. Une Fleur de Cassie is my absolute favorite because it is so complex, sultry, dark, and dangerous. Love it.
I like Noir Épices most. I read Catherine Deneuve wears this, among others. A female friend of mine once commented it would not be t h a t precise; her favourite on me is Opus 1870. And in comparison NE certainly has a far broader perspective to offer. That's why I like it, this mixture of a bright (very blond, indeed) top and the scent-development in the realm of chypre and oriental characteristics.
I perceive the sensuality of NE as a bit hidden, like a treasure in a forsaken garden. Where Musc Ravageur speaks of instant and complete conquest, NE conveys the aura of a subdued desire for communication. NE is like this tall girl in class with her long, straight (blond) hair, her huge blue eyes of immense depth, the one who is much more evolved than her classmates, a silent one, encapsulating the youthful storm of emotions deep in her heart, admired by many but approached by none. The one that some day, out of a sudden, begins to talk to you in her thoughtful and sonorous manner and you feel like it's christmas and your birthday at the same time. She probably won't mention her much older, worldly and a bit shady mentor-friend, the one that currently has disappeared from the screen once more, the one who taught her not only the beauty of the arts but also introduced her to carnal pleasures of highest refinement...but you are soon to discover.
Last edited by Candide; 10th July 2012 at 11:34 PM.
Don't know all of them. So far:
My least favourites are
Parfum de Thérèse
My favourites so far
Bigarade concentrée - juicy, jummy AND very sensual!
Eau d'hiver - love the transparent heliotropin (contrary to the disgusting stuff called heliotrope by Etro), the hay notes...
Angeliques sous la pluie - great green bitter
yet have to try French Lover, sounds so promising...
Favorite is probably Carnal Flower, because it's the most exceptional tuberose I've ever smelled.
Other favorites are Iris Poudre, Un Fleur de Cassie, Lys Mediterranee, Lipstick Rose, En Passant, Portrait of a Lady and Eau d' Hiver.
Didn't care for Parfum de Therese at all, but maybe I had a bad sample, I need to order another decant to be sure.
Cologne Bigarade is a very nice citrus.
Angeliques Sous La Pluie, Une Rose and Dans Tres Bras were okay.
I vote for Musc Ravageur, and it's the only scent from this house I own. I despise Carnal Flower, sorry. Tuberose in general is not usually a favorite for me, and Carnal Flower has the heaviest tuberose ever, supposedly. I think I will have to buy Une Fleur de Cassie too. I love this as a floral that doesn't make me smell like a bouquet of flowers. There's a naughtiness here that is different and delicious.
I have and love Le parfum de Thérèse, Musc Ravageur and En Passant.
Angéliques sous la pluie and Vétiver Extraordinaire are on my wishlist.
I also like Bigarade concentrée, Lipstick Rose and Une Fleur de Cassie.
"Wovon man nicht lesen kann, darüber muss man schreiben."
Frederic Malle is my favourite perfume house, to me they offer the highest quality and biggest variety in scents. Anyone remember the brilliant test kit, they've offered in the beginning? When I ordered mine in the beginning of 2003, there were 12 little 5ml size glass spray bottles in one box and although I found them all fascinating, my favourites were at first only Bigarade concentrée (which I've been wearing constantly since then) and Le parfum de Thérèse. The latter I kind of grew out of, although I still find it fascinating. A more recent favourite is Carnal Flower, but I don't get the fridge association, to me it's the sexiest and hottest tuberose scent out there. Angéliques sous la pluie, Portrait of a Lady and Une Rose are the other current ones, I wear. I also love the candles, especially Santal Cardamome.
My absolute favourite of Frederic Malle is Portrait of a Lady. PoaL is an aristocratic and precise blend of rose, patchouli and Ribes nigrum (blackcurrant - but without the feline note. Stunning longevity.
Noir epices comes second. NE is a cool Nordic beauty: ashblond or brunette with formidable ice gray eyes. Perfect companion for a night at the opera and Wagner's Der Ring des Nibelungen.
Vetiver Extraordinaire and Iris Poudre The finest warmest, mellowest vetiver I have found (unless they have changed it in the last 3 years) and the most charming, feminine iris floral you would ever find.
See my blog; http://www.basenotes.net/blogs/2645-kumquat
I own Musc Ravageur and Le Parfum de Thérèse in FB.
I also quite like Portrait of a Lady, Une Rose, En Passant, Lys Méditerranée and Bigarade Concentrée, but none of them are FB worthy.
I ended up rather unimpressed with Carnal Flower, as it is a tad too creamy and bright for my liking. Noir Epicee is a very polarising scent and I need to revisit it again to come to a decision about whether I like it or not. Cassie was absolutely horrid. I think it's highly likely that I'm anosmic towards vetiver, since I don't quite remember how Vétiver Extraordinaire smelt, or for that matter how any vetiver scent smells on my skin. I haven't tried Angéliques Sous La Pluie or Dans Tes Bras, albeit I do own samples of these. Hiver was lacklustre, but then again I rather dislike the iris note in any fragrance.
All in al, the must-smell scents from this line would be Musc Ravageur, Portrait of a Lady, Carnal Flower and EN Passant.
Un Jardin Sur Le Nil
& Bois Vanille Pour Homme Extreme
1. Une fleur de cassie,the more interesting of the line imo, haunting !
2. Lys med (my second best lys)
3. Une rose / vetiver : among the best in their categories (if you are in rose or vetiver you must try them)