Parfums MDCI has long been a favourite house of mine. There’s attention to detail, and their perfumes turn fragrant notes into harmonies, melodies into symphonies.
I think that Claude Marchal, the brand owner, might harbour a great love of white florals, at least I can count a lot of fragrances from that genre in his out-put. If you’re looking for the best peachy tuberose; Péché Cardinale is the one – for tuberose lovers as well as tube-neuroses. Or the stunning Enlèvement au Sérail, which has now been discontinued. Promesse de l’Aube is another refined jasmine, ylang-ylang fragrance, a personal favourite, for its perfect elegance and vibrancy. In the newest release we go from Promesse’s dawn to the Spanish night with Nuit Andalouse.
Nuit Andalouse has a tiny dose of green and violet, and a fruity note on top of what from the very start can be perceived as a white floral bouquet. The opening notes give the fragrance a subtle development as the juiciness takes it from top notes into the heart. It slowly amps up on the white floral part- is it tuberose? Jasmine? Ylang-ylang? Tiara? It could be, until an incredibly subtle mushroomy note tells you with certainty that it is gardenia. It is so smooth and vivid and only just enough dirrty to make you take notice. The balanced sweetness from the orange flower, I believe, makes for the white flower masquerade. The almost desert-like taste of the dry down, stays on the very grow-up, albeit highly addictive, side. The gardenia in Nuit Andalouse is a night flower. It unfolds as dusk arrives, it lures you in with its scent like a siren-song, and the colour of its petals will glow phosphorescent in the dark.
Perfumer Cecile Zarokian’s working name for this fragrance was simply ‘Gardenia’, but I can see why it should be called after a southern Spanish night. One can hear the cicada singing, feel the dry air in a warm summer darkness that surrounds the wearer. And yet, in the middle of this Spanish midsummer night’s dream, Nuit Andalouse bears an unmistakably French signature as an elegant white floral perfume.
*I could probably bore you a long while about French artists and composers being drawn to all things Spanish, (Bizet’s Carmen anyone?) and what happens when the two meet, but I’ll just ad this little bit of fun; Massenet’s ‘Air de Ballet’- originally taken from his own first opera ‘Don César de Bazan’- a Spanish story- then used in his Suite no 4, and then, it was a hit after all, as a song called Nuit d’Espagne. In this short video from the ballet ‘Manon’ we’re back to French territory (with an English choreographer), but the fabulous dancer is the Spanish Tamara Rojo. Enjoy.
**I wish for a FB of Nuit Andalouse to spray with abandon and transport me to the Andalusian night, instead of my meagre and soon to be empty sample vial (purchased by me). But such quality comes at a price 215€ for 75ml. Although a reminder of the fantastic sample programme, if you are not already acquainted with the MDCI line.