Fig-tea by Patricia de Nicolai for Nicolai Parfumeur Createur 2007

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Post by Anne-Marie

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Love at first sniff: Fig-tea by Patricia de Nicolai for Nicolai Parfumeur Createur 2007

Do you trust love at first sight? Or sniff? On the whole, I don’t. Still, when I smelled Fig-tea in a Nicolai boutique in Paris recently, there was no question that it was coming home with me.

Fig-tea by Nicolai Parfumeur Createur 2007

Fig-tea by Patricia de Nicolai

Fig Tea Nicolai Parfumeur Createur FragranticaPhoto Stolen Fragrantica

Fragrantica gives these featured accords:
Top: Fig, osmanthus, artemisia
Heart: Mate, coriander, jasmine
Base: Guaiac wood, amber

When I was a kid we had an apricot tree in the backyard, and after a swim in the pool I would gorge myself on ripe apricots, water still dripping off me and apricot juice running all over my fingers. This was what I remembered when I first sniffed Fig-tea. I could see, smell and taste apricots so clearly I think I must have laughed with delight, right in front of the (very dishy) young male SA in the Nicolai boutique. He was amused, in typically cool Parisian style, but really I was paying him no attention. It was apricots, sunshine, and the kind of happiness you are still too young to treasure because life has so far delivered no stings.

Fig Tea Nicolai Parfumeur Createur swimming Alberto P. Veiga FlickrPhoto Stolen Flickr

Osmanthus is known for its apricot facet, so it must be is osmanthus that delivers me this powerful memory of apricots ripening in the sun. I’m probably the wrong person to review this fragrance because I smell no fig at all in Fig-Tea. Most people do, but not me. I know what fig smells like as fresh fruit and in perfume, but here I just don’t get it. So don’t ask me if the fig is nuanced with creamy coconut, leaves, earth, or just the fruit. I wouldn’t know.

A number of notes combine to prevent the apricot – so prominent for me – from becoming too syrupy-sweet: mate tea, coriander, and … ahem … calone. Do you hate calone? Yes, me too. Calone is not listed as a note in Fig-tea and you might not smell it at all. I can detect it in parts per billion and I do smell it in Fig-tea. But it’s subtle. It pulls the fragrance in a refreshing direction and after its opening few minutes, Fig-Tea is brisk and cool, slightly salty, and skews unisex.

For reference, Carthusia puts out a fig-tea fragrance named Io Capri. Here I do smell fig quite clearly, rather tart, and accompanied by notes of citrus, tea, mint and eucalyptus. ‘Seaweed’ in the base contributes a briny accent not unlike the calone in Fig-Tea. But Io Capri is rough, outdoorsy and a little strident compared to the walled-garden Parisian refinement of Nicolai’s Fig-tea.

Fig Tea Nicolai Parfumeur Createur France_Cotes_d_Armor_Roche_Jagu_ja WikipediaPhoto Stolen Wikipedia

Fig-tea was released by Nicolai as an Eau Fraiche but these days is listed as an EDT. Sillage is moderate, but longevity on me is about five hours, at least. Although a warm weather fragrance, at the height of summer I still expect to reach for the invigorating freshness of Io Capri.
Figs, apricots, tea, tangy breezes and sweet memories. It’s amazing what will come out of a perfume bottle.

Further reading: Best Things In Beauty and This Side Of Perfume
Luckyscent has $130/100ml and samples

What’s brightening up your life right now?

Until next time, keep spritzing!
Anne-Marie xx

6 comments on “Fig-tea by Patricia de Nicolai for Nicolai Parfumeur Createur 2007

  1. australianperfumejunkies says:

    Hey there Anne-Marie,
    Love the Parfum de Nicolai range. Recently during my cleanup I was surprised by how many full bottles I own of hers.
    I do miss the old bottles, yes I know everyone moaned about them but I always thought them fun and full of whimsy.
    The square bottles are more practical but speak to me more of clean lined modern urbanity than stylish fun and fripperies.
    Portia xx

  2. Maya says:

    Thanks for the review. I like Patricia de Nicholai perfumes and recently fell in love with Un Coeur en Mai. I avoid fig-centric perfumes but I will have to try this one. To paraphrase what a friend told me – when you read a review and everyone smells figs but one person sme6s apricots, you’ll smell apricots too. I love the smell of peaches and apricots! 🙂

    • annemarie says:

      Good point! I hope you enjoy fig tea. Peach is another fave of mine too, and plum. I can’t do sweet red berries though.

  3. poodle says:

    Apricots? I want to try this now.

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