Nobile 1942 Four Square

Everything started with Umberto Nobile, Massimo’s grandfather, a name that has always been synonymous with luxury fragrances. Since the early 30s he represented Nina Ricci perfumes and in 1942, at the heigh of Second World War, he decided to open a perfumery for his wife in Rome. It became a family tradition: Massimo’s father did the same for his wife in Naples and also Massimo’s brother, who fell in love with a woman from Tuscany, opened a perfumery for his wife…In 2004, when Acqua di Parma was acquired by LVMH group, he decided to create with his wife Stefania a brand that represents the italian elegance worldwide. We’ve never followed trends: the main example is that in 2011, when the western world of perfumery went crazy for agarwood, we launched “La Danza delle Libellule”, a vanilla perfume, that became our best seller worldwide. What is important is to keep our sober elegance, that can stand up over time, to meet our customers’ expectations. The first fragrance was Pontevecchio, created in 2004 and distributed in 2005, which marked the beginning of Nobile 1942’s in the new millennium.…


HOUSE: Nobile 1942
ORIGIN: Italy
FRAGRANCE: Castelli di Sabbia, Estroverso, Patchouli Nobile, Pontevecchio
SIZE/COST: 75ml / $135-195


Castelli di Sabbia (Extrait de Parfum, 2020): An exhalation of silky sweetness, so soft and supple and scintillating. The spices drive this with a creamy date accord that delivers a warming embrace. For me the figgy date here comes off almost thick and balsamic, though it has a light side that is romantic and oh so graceful. Sacred Indian incense with just a touch of mesmerizing dry vanilla. This is built around the complexity vs fragility of sandcastles – in my opinion an extremely existential reference that offers a nod to a drift, a rift, a sandstorm, a mirage. Now you see it, now you don’t. Yes, it’s left an impression so to speak. This is more about what it casts than putting on a show for a crowd. I can so appreciate a perfume that leaves a soft musk trail and takes no prisoners in doing so. This is that. (86%)

Nose: Christian Carbonnel
Notes: dates, cinnamon, turmeric, black pepper, cardamom, cedar, nagarmotha, vetiver, musk, vanilla

Estroverso (EDP, 2010): A shimmering citrus, so lemony and light. This pierces through the doldrums of the everyday, bringing a cascade of sunshine into any room in which someone may don this ravishing creation. Under the cast of brightness there seems to be something woody, earthy, green and altogether fluid just below the surface. There’s this emergence of a slight herbal sensibility with a bit of the salty sea, this continues to keep the fragrance brisk and open into the heart. But even here there is something similar to sage floating about, with the clean lemony luminescence still piercing through. It’s a hard feat to pull off, this extended citrus that slowly melanges into a citrus musk with a greenish tint thanks to a wisp of vetiver that saunters in from the sidelines. This will perk you up and may get you into thinking about taking the bi-way, and setting out on a completely new routine. It prods the fruit of contemplation. (85%)

Nose: Marie Duchene
Notes: Lemon, Orange, Tangerine, Lime, Rosemary, Mugwort, Cedarwood, Vetiver, Patchouli, Musk, Ambergris

Patchouli Nobile (EDP, 2009): Soft and sensual this brings glints of palo santo and the lightest speckle of pepper at the top. If you like your woody fragrances presented in a more glowing light, deeply imbued in a velvety smoothness, this will be your ticket to ride. This celebrates the grooves and jaggedness of timber, and its graceful and aloof presence within all of the natural world. It’s got a casual-confident feel with what seems like an accord similar to a sunlit hay bale. Patchouli Nobile is quite a grounded fragrance that takes patchouli into a new forum, to a more mystical setting where times and lifestyles are slower, more relaxed, a slight bit sober. You can dress this up or down, bu however you cut it you cannot ignore its sheer elegance. (87%)

Nose: Marie Duchene
Notes: Citrus, white pepper, frankincense, patchouli, guaiac wood, cistus, jasmine, Moroccan cedarwood, amber, oak moss, sandalwood, tonka

Pontevecchio (EDP, 2005): This is an unusual composition, hard to read at first as it comes on sort of ghostly in terms of its near transparent aura. I get iris and a light yet verdant grassy greeness, though each seems in limbo, suspended in thin air. After only two minutes the perfume begins to show itself, like a shroud cast under new light. Florals mix with incense in a fanciful way, almost as if moving like koi under water, the flicker of each moment is captured as newness keeps surfacing and light breaks the surface and is dispersed in the deep. This is a fantasy fragrance, one that smells more like a passage of time, still quite contemporary, but it’s as though you have blinked and missed something. In a way it reminds me of the polar opposite of the works by the master photographer, Cartier Bresson who dedicated his life to “the perfect moment”. It’s as though instead of indulging in that split second, you are experiencing something that happened just before or after the action. That may only make sense to 2% of readers, but my guess is this will have a different meaning for nearly anyone, so make your own picture! (83%)

Nose: Marie Duchene
Notes: bergamot, mandarin, frankincense, iris, rosewood, geranium, cedarwood, Ylang ylang, jasmine, rose, sandalwood, patchouli, vetiver, musk

Recommended Soundtrack:
Christopher Bissonnette, Essays in Idleness (2014)

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