Friday, November 28, 2008

Maxim's de Paris


Some people may balk at the thought of wafting such an obviously '80s-smelling perfume, but Maxim's de Paris was one of the most memorable creations of the daring, sensational decade. It seems to have been sold as a mid-range fragrance (meaning it was more affordable than many prestige perfumes), but I think Maxim's smelled complex, sexy, sophisticated and high end. Almost full-bodied and animalic enough to call a parfum fourrure, it was not merely ritzy but an artfully blended perfume that suited, in its time, the image of the legendary restaurant by the same name, famously purchased by, designed and decorated by Pierre Cardin. The perfume to me smells slightly spicy (maybe a bit reminiscent of Pierre Cardin cologne for Men from 1972 - it was created by the Cardin company) but overall warm, sweet (white floral to my nose), a tiny bit herbaceous with a 1980s signature mint top note, and balsamic-ambery-woody. I've seen it classified as Floral but to me, this is a Floral Oriental. I feel it's in many ways comparable in style to Cartier Panthere (1986), Adolfo by Adolfo Dominguez (1986), Matchabelli by Prince Matchabelli (1982) and Molinard de Molinard (1980).

Midtown Perfumes lists these notes:

Maxim's de Paris (1984)

Top Notes: bergamot, mint, melon
Heart Notes: lily of the valley, rose, ylang-ylang
Base Notes: sandalwood, honey, vanilla

Although not listed, I also smell patchouli and oakmoss. There seems to be a bit of a chypre leather (Dry Woods) accord in here.