Souvenir Scent – Paglieri 1876, Agrigentum, Florentia, Venetiae (2016)

Perfume can carry us away in an instant; to faraway places, to memories of time long past, to new horizons and places we didn’t know exist, and even to the abstract of unlimited imagination. Of course, it works the other way around too; when we travel, what better way to keep a memory than to buy a special perfume connected with that place, and to revisit through scent, when you long for a break or a memory.

As a perfume lover, we like nothing more than getting hold of liquid holiday memories in pretty bottles, (hello city exclusives!) preferably closely related to the destination, and even if scented memoirs are not a new thing, the Italian brand Paglieri 1876, which makes a speciality of scenting the most famous cities in the boot country, was new to me.

Through a dear friend I got to try the three of their perfumes; Venetiae, Agrigentum and Florentia

Florentia has notes of bergamot, rose, clove, cedar, iris, leather, styrax, amber, tonka bean and sandalwood.

And obviously, Florentia is an iris fragrance, based on the Iris Florentina, (how could it not be?) and what a pretty one it is. Up top it’s crispy with a little peppery clove, while a fresh-ish rose, aided by the dryness of woods, alludes to starched white shirts cool against sun warmed skin. The iris that follows, throws on a hand-tailored Italian leather jacket, and becomes warm, noble-spicy and the tiniest bit dirty. While I might not truly need more iris perfumes, this lovely Florentine postcard would surely come home with me as a souvenir if I came across it in its name town.

Venetiae; Geranium, cinnamon, rose, sea-notes, freesia, saffron, oud, sandalwood, tonka bean, amber.

Most astounding Venetiae doesn’t start by hitting you with the rose-oud hammer, rather it opens on a combo of spice, rose-oud and… nothing! …Nothing? Air perhaps?

I couldn’t understand why something could smell of air until I realised that it was the scent of Copenhagen air, salt-water air, which was a part of this rather unusual oud opening. Like a little riddle hidden inside the perfume, I was delighted that my reaction was actually sea-air, rather than ‘someone trying to recreate salty air, but it just smells hideously synthetic’. The secret being in the dosage I believe, which is minimal. The rest of the perfume is nicely done; woudy (wood and oud in just the right amounts), enough flowers to waft a bouquet breeze and warm spices round of Ventiae. Yes, in a weak moment, I could see myself buying into the salty gondolier air and the merchant bazar of Venetiae.

Agrigentum; mandarin, lemon, orange, almond, ylang-ylang, jasmine, violet, patchouli, tonka bean, vanilla, praline.

Agrigentum starts as an alcohol-free cocktail hour and turns into a creamy gourmand. The citrus fruits are juicy, refreshing yet sunny and sweet, with a hint of berries adding tartness. The almond, paired with ylang-ylang, vanilla and praline is sweet, yet not completely tooth-decay-category. It’s Dolce Vita, Baby. The sun is shining and even The Godfather is having dessert in the shade, while Etna looks too cute and postcard pretty from a distance to be worried about.

Agrigentum is too gourmand for me, but then, I have yet to travel to Sicily, who knows which perfume I’ll choose to bring home as a souvenir?

Perhaps in future perfumeries with regional perfumes will replace all kitschy souvenir shops, perfumista heaven?

Did you bring perfume home from your holiday?


12 thoughts on “Souvenir Scent – Paglieri 1876, Agrigentum, Florentia, Venetiae (2016)

  1. I love perfume as a souvenir! I didn’t go on a holiday this summer, but in January I went with my husband on one of his business trips to Barcelona. I visited several perfumeries, including The Perfumery in the Barri Gotic neighborhood. What fun! One of the owners was there and was kind enough to talk with us at length and show us many unusual, niche perfumes. I came home with a bottle of Orquidea Negra, by Spanish perfumer Daniel Josier. Gorgeous.

    • How exciting! To meet that kind of fellow enthusiast and find the perfect souvenir perfume. I remember the first time I was at Jovoy in Paris, it was still new and in a different place than today, and M. Henin was like that too, showing us everything with enthusiasm. That shop will always be special to me.
      Daniel Josier gets a lot of love, I hope to get to try his perfumes soon.
      I wonder if these specialised, regional perfumes are not the ‘niche’ of the future, as it seems that now every niche perfumery sells the same perfumes brands?

  2. As you know, I love the idea of perfume as a souvenir, having bought a number of those souvenirs in your excellent company. 😉 Your description of these scents make them sound as laid-back and joyous as a vacation to Italy is — and I love how they are city-specific.

    On a separate note, I love your new banner. Beautiful work, Asali!

    • Hehe, yes indeed. The Mona Vanille will always remind me of you in Paris under the ‘popsicles’ 🙂 hopefully someday in the not too far distance it can be repeated.
      I think these are both easy to like and special enough to talk to parfumistas, and the design is nice too.
      I’m glad you like the new banner, I always like a little change up.

  3. I’ve never heard about that brand but out of the three Florentia sounds the most appealing.

    While I like the idea of bringing back perfume “souvenirs,” and I just recently did it but I think I won’t be doing that any more – or at least I won’t be doing it the same way I did this time. Since, as a rule, I’m not buying inexpensive perfumes, it’s too much pressure for me to find a new perfume and go from “nice” to “like” to “want” within a couple of days or even hours. So I’ll probably stick to either trying perfumes before going somewhere and buy them there if I’m sure I like it. Or I’ll find perfumes while traveling, test them more at home and then buy.

    • Dear Undina, yes, I agree with you, the pressure is too much. Having to find something sort of takes away from the fun, and if the bottle isn’t nearly as loved as other things in your collection, it really doesn’t make much sense to buy it in the first place. I think your new approach sounds very sensible, however the few times I did that (once I wanted HdP moulin Rouge 50ml)the perfume was nowhere to be found… of course, it Is Becoming increasingly difficult with all the perfume one has already got, and tested, to find new things that are truly FB worthy, save for those 15.000£ mimosa ones ?

  4. I really like the idea of perfume as a souvenir, but I am not sure I have ever acted on it. I came quite close on holiday in France in fact, of which more anon, but talked myself out of it because of the wrongness of acting on impulse when there isn’t usually time to make a considered purchase.

    Of the scents you review, I am most drawn to Agrigentum – always a sucker for a ylang-ylang note!

    • Yes, I know exactly what you mean, I’m usually quite good at talking myself out of buying perfume rashly, as the ones I like are never in the cheap end… I’m looking forward to reading of your France exploits, and see which one you got close to buying. When a parfumista can’t (find anything to) buy, the next best thing is to hear what other parfumistas bought, or nearly bought ?

  5. Ooh Florentia sounds lovely.
    Well done for spotting the sea air accord in Venetiae! They’ve obviously done a marine note well for once.
    I often wonder if I should have bought some Acqua di Parma when we were in Parma. That is where it’s from, right?
    I didn’t buy any perfume in Majorca but think it’s a lovely souvenir idea. I want to go to Capri and buy something from Carthusia 🙂

    • Perhaps taking Undina’s idea to the extreme, and to make sure one doesn’t stress one self out by having to choose a souvenir related perfume when on holiday, from now on we should only holiday in places which resonate with a certain perfume; so Carthusia, Capri is next holiday stop for you ?

Comments are closed.