Nez à Nez; l’Hêtre Révé

Notes: Star anise, mandarin, cinnamon, clove, sandalwood, vetiver, patchouli, plum, wisteria, cedarwood, gaiacwood, jacaranda, leather, musk, port

I’ve been in quite the mood for bold luxurious perfumes lately; first with Chergui and, now, I’ve been living in Nez à Nez’s gorgeous l’Hêtre Révé all week. Nez à Nez is a niche perfume line started by a French couple: Christa Patout and Stephane Humbert Lucas. Fortunately Luckyscent carries the full line for all to try out, and I’ve been greedily devouring my sample.

I liked l’Hêtre Révé immediately, as the opening is quite spicy with the cinnamon and clove coming on strongly. I was reminded of sitting in coffee houses as a college student, lighting up clove cigarettes, and discussing Colette and Simone de Beauvoir.

But don’t worry, this fragrance quickly transitions out of university student territory. A delicious plum note appears, and seems to ripen more and more as long as l’Hêtre Révé lasts on the skin. However, I wouldn’t describe this scent as predominantly fruity, as there are plenty of other elements to balance out the plum. l’Hêtre Révé develops into a smoky leather scent. I hate to admit this, but leather scents can be hit or miss for me. Luckily this one is really, really a hit. There is a slight edginess to this leather–giving off a hint of danger–but it manages to be warm and inviting at the same time.

l’Hêtre Révé reminds me of By Kilian’s Back to Black because of the ripe fruit note and the overall pure indulgence of the fragrance. But the smokiness of Back to Black is more delicate and herbal, while l’Hêtre Révé is some deeply spiced and smokey goodness. This spice isn’t hippie though. It’s elegant, Parisian, grown up. Wear your favorite lipstick with this perfume, and settle into a corner of a dimly lit bar with a champagne cocktail.

And just for fun: l’Hêtre Révé literally means ‘the dreamt Beech tree.’ But it also serves as a play on words, since it sounds like l’Etre Révé which means ‘the dreamt person.’ Interesting to think about!

Nez à Nez; l’Hêtre Révé: $165 for 100 ml. Samples and Full Bottles available from Luckyscent

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