Perfume Directory

Baldessarini (2002)
by Baldessarini


Baldessarini information

Year of Launch2002
AvailabilityIn Production
Average Rating
(based on 314 votes)

People and companies

PerfumerPierre Wargnye
PerfumerJean-Marc Chaillan
Parent CompanyMäurer & Wirtz
Parent Company at launchProcter & Gamble > P&G Prestige Beaute > Hugo Boss

About Baldessarini

Baldessarini is the top of the line Hugo Boss fashion range which was named after their former long-standing chairman, Werner Baldessarini.

This new fragrance is as high end as its clothing name-sake at nearly US$100 a bottle (which is an antique reproduction).
Available in the UK from Harrods in 1000 numbered bottles in August 2002, and following in the US in March 2003.

Baldessarini fragrance notes

  1. Top Notes
  2. Heart Notes
  3. Base notes

Reviews of Baldessarini

I didn't enjoy the Concentree version (unbalanced and syrupy), but am enjoying my Hugo Boss-branded bottle, which feels a bit like a link in the chain between The Dreamer and Vera Wang for Men (with maybe a touch of Herrera for Men, too). Restrained, easy to wear, mature (but not stodgy).
08th January, 2021
There's a bit of an interesting story to this one, and it all starts with the house of Hugo Boss. Werner Baldessarini was a chairman of the board for the house and also a head designer/creative director by 1988, but through Hugo Boss, he spun off his own private label in 1993 which eventually lead to this fragrance in 2002. Baldessarini targeted mature men, being as there really wasn't any house intentionally doing that from the start outside maybe the venerable Brooks Brothers which had assumed that role over time via tradition, and the debut fragrance was meant to be appealing for mature masculine tastes. Peter Wargyne, who also had worked on such fragrances as Drakkar Noir by Guy Laroche (1982) and Hugo Boss' own Boss/Boss Number One (1985) seemed an obvious choice, as did Jean-Marc Chaillan, son of perfumer Raymond Chaillan. Together, they'd craft a smooth, soft-spoken citrus and tobacco fragrance that was adjacent to a chypre in tone, but without the labdanum or heavy oakmoss hit to make it overtly woody. There was a thing with tobacco fragrances happening that started in the 90's with Dolce & Gabbana pour Homme (1993) and would continue through into the mid-2000's, so this fragrance would not be entirely out of the wheelhouse of a younger man looking to be on-trend at the time either. Baldessarini by Baldessarini (2002) would initially ship as Baldessarini by Hugo Boss, but since Werner would leave the company and take his nameplate with him the same year as launch, those earliest bottles labelled with Hugo Boss are a bit rarer to come by these days. Most of what you might find now will either be made by Proctor & Gamble (who picked up the license for the perfumes) or Maurer & Wirtz, who took it over for P&G after 2011. Note that a different Concentrée version also exists. They must have done something right, because this one has more flankers I have missing left socks.

The slogan of "separates the men from the boys" that Baldessarini uses holds pretty true here with this debut fragrance, and I can imagine by the way this scent opens, how far and away from what younger guys wanted this must have intially smelled. Bitter orange and tangerine merge with mint, which lays over top an almost lactonic kind of note (hence the chypre-adjacent comparison, which quickly heads into spicy heart. Clove, chamomile, and balsam fir continue the aromatic theme, and I am reminded of many other 2000's tobacco scents that would seek similar progressions in the dry down, likely in competition with this. The tobacco comes in after only a few minutes, but doesn't kick into high gear until about 30 minutes on skin, where it takes over with a bit of juniper berry, white musk, patchouli, and a round amber. All told, you have very much likely smelled this combination of notes, so Baldessarini will play one of those "where have I smelled this before?" kind of tricks on your nose-brain, then it hits: Vera Wang for Men (2004). That scent takes bits of the fig from the concurrently-released Marc Jacobs for Men (2002), and marries it to the citrus spice and amber of Baldessarini, so if you don't happen to like fig in the Vera Wang scent, circle back here and try this. Wear time is average at about eight hours, with close sillage that stays noticeable to you, but not voluminous to others. Baldessarini is a genteel sort of affair, for the "to the nines" kind of guy young or old, but is also beige enough in tone to hang at an office as well. I'd not use this in hot weather, but in temperate seasons or the very onset of winter, you should be fine. Baldessarini is very versatile, but on virtue that it doesn't really have much to say, unlike a lot of loud ozonics and gourmands making the rounds when this saw release. A quiet and confident smile of one who has wisdom to share, but often keeps to himself is this. I like Baldessarini, but I don't know if I have room in my heart to truly love it, although I'll never mind smelling it on someone else passing by if I caught it in the wild.

Outside of the opulent Michael by Michael Kors for Men (2001), all the really distinct tobacco fragrances from the period had already been released prior to the 21st century, with the aforementioned Dolce & Gabbana pour Homme, joined by Versace The Dreamer (1995), and Gucci Envy for Men (1998) making the biggest waves. Besides the Vera Wang, Tom Ford had a go with Tom Ford for Men (2007), which pushed the theme here into a more amber-heavy complex direction, and even Avon took a stab with the exceptional but ultimately ignored Avon Signature (2008), infusing a brisk apple spice and bamboo accord into this mix. Predating most of that, Baldessarini by Baldessarini feels like a stripped-down foundation upon which literally all the rest are laid, hence my earlier statement of smelling like something you've already experienced a dozen times elsewhere, but it's not Baldessarini's fault really. You can't exactly say it's an iconic and popular scent inspiring others in its wake, especially because it was unusually high-priced for it's day (but wasn't niche) in an attempt to attract wealthier older male buyers, it's just that perfumers Wargyne and Chaillan delivered something so fundamentally solid for Baldessarini that it was natural others would use its building blocks. After all, tons of barbershop fougères took after Dana Canoe (1936) without trying to smell like it, because the underpinnings of that low-key classic were so easy to manipulate, so I imagine similar things happened here. Olfactive déjà vu or not, Baldessarini is worth checking out for those focusing on smaller economical and functional collections where less scents cover more bases, and most things are easily replaced when emptied. Otherwise, if you like your tobacco on the leafier side smoothed by amber, a hint of patchouli, and are looking for something that is discreet but still enjoyable, this is a winner. Thumbs up.
14th June, 2020
Classy, old-school vibe.

Baldessarini is a scent that seems a bit out of place at the time of this writing, but that's because it manages to smell uniquely old, yet Y2K-era at the same time. Its spicy, bitter orange opening reminds me a bit of Terre d'Hermes (2006), but this brings an older impression due to the licorice-like mint, subtle fir, and somewhat meaty tobacco. This is the type of scent you would expect to smell in the Harvard Club. Very classy and refined. This has a skew towards more mature gents, but a refined, younger gent can certainly pull this off. This is a scent that smells of confidence, wisdom, and sophistication.

Performance is good, and the scent stays relatively close to the skin, but with a scent like this, that's a good thing. This is good for date nights and cooler weather. You could wear this to the office, but I think it works best if you have the corner office.

Definitely sample this one. It could most certainly be a signature scent for the right man.

Thumbs up.
26th November, 2019
Clean, slightly bitter citrus with plenty of cool, woody notes. Feels mature but there's some modern sweetness too so it's not completely unwearable by young guys. All season, daytime scent that seems perfect for office wear. A little complex but not too fussy.

For a cologne strength scent, this one performs well. Projects more than a skin scent and lasts for most of the workday.
29th January, 2019
I'm not into fresh fragrances but Baldessarini is a really nice perfume. Not too fresh nor too spicy, it is very well balanced.

The presence of tobacco is a plus.
31st May, 2018
What a great scent!
You'll get the bitter orange first along with cedar and tobacco. There is also fresh spiciness because of the mint.
In the dry down there is a strong cedarwood.

01st April, 2018

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