Notes: fig, osmanthus, artemisia, mate, coriander, jasmine, guaiac wood, and amber.
I’m always happy to try a new (new to me, at least) scent from Patricia de Nicolai and Parfums de Nicolai. Fig Tea stood out to me, since I am still making an effort to try fig-centric fragrances to get a better feel for this theme in perfumery. Fig Tea is listed as an Eau Fraiche concentration, so I thought it would be a good refreshing scent to sample during this spring/summer season.
Fig Tea is indeed quite refreshing. It opens on a sweet fruity note. It’s a jammy fig, but doesn’t come across as too sticky-sweet. In fact, there’s a slight fizziness that keeps the opening lightweight. I detect apricot as well, most likely from the osmanthus. This opening is markedly different from the other fig scents I’ve sampled, which have focused on green fig leaves. The fruit opening here makes for a softer, more gentle impression.
Unlike a fig scent such as Diptyque’s Philosykos, Fig Tea never turns into a green fragrance, but it does develop to take on a noticeably herbaceous feel. After around twenty minutes of wear time, I notice something like mint coming through, only not as sharp. I’ve come to realize that it’s the mate or yerba mate note. I’ve never encountered this note before, but it’s very refreshing and pleasant. It’s green and herbal, but not sharp the way a mint note can sometimes be. This lovely herbaceous note serves to lift the overall composition so that the fruit and florals never turn too sweet or heavy.
As the fragrance develops, the fig note becomes much less pronounced, to the point where I probably wouldn’t identify this as a fig-centric fragrance if I were doing a blind testing of it. The tea aspect comes through much more strongly for me from the middle all the way into the dry down. This is not a smokey or cozy tea scent. It’s more like iced black tea and, because of the fruit notes, it makes me think of raspberry flavored iced tea.
I wasn’t expecting much staying power from this fragrance (considering the Eau Fraiche concentration) but I get just over 4 hours of wear time here, which is decent. The fragrance has a lightweight feel to it, so it can easily be reapplied without fear of being too heavy-handed. Even the dry down wears lightly for me. I really don’t sense any amber, but I do get hints of woodiness, like a dusted-over tea note, but in a nice way if that makes sense.
I really enjoy the herbaceous and refreshing tea notes here. I love cozy black tea perfumes for winter, but it’s nice to have a tea perfume that’s great for spring/summer wear. I have to admit that I’m personally a bit disappointed that the fig note isn’t more prominent here. Is this what I want from a fig fragrance? I’m not sure. But it’s good to sample a fig scent that isn’t just about green fig leaves. And the other notes here are so appealing, it’s hard to complain. Now, I have to see what fig scents I come across next.
*Updated image is courtesy of Parfums de NicolaÏ and the info on notes is from Fragrantica.