Wednesday, February 01, 2006

REVIEW: Patricia de Nicolai ,Mahardjah

Notes: Rosemary, lavender, cinnamon, pepper, Indian sandalwood

Pros: Spicy oriental with excellent lasting power. Reminiscent of Jicky but without the vanilla and civet. Has an overall effect of smokey incense.

Cons: A simple fragrance that could be enhanced by a musk or tonka note. I would like it better if it were just a touch sweeter.

Bottleworthy? Though it's a bit pricey, and has a simple composition, I like the mood it creates. That being said, I think I'll hold out for SMN's new Citta di Kyoto.

Where can I buy it? 50ml edp spray $70 at

The Bottom Line: Though it starts off rather sharply with an herbal rosemary note, the lavender soon tempers it and the cinnamon quickly takes center stage. The pepper and sandalwood are surprisingly subtle. This is the perfect scent for those who love spice, or more specifically, cinnamon.

Rating (out of 10): 6.5

Maharadjah is truly a cinnamon-lover's scent. Which cinnamon fragrance is your favorite?


colombina said...

I like this one very much, but, like you, I would love it to have just tiny bit of sweetness, just a little.

Laura said...

I like this one but prefer it as a candle/room scent.

Cinnamon notes are hard to get right because of the high odor intensity of cinnamon bark/cassia. A drop too much and the cinnamon overwhelms the composition. Right now I'm really enjoying Mandy Aftel's Parfum de Maroc, which has cinnamon and other spices accenting a jasmine/rose heart and a resinous myrrh/labdanum base. I also have a soft spot for Opium. I don't wear it much any more, but it was my first "real" perfume and my signature scent for years. Comme des Garcons is another interesting one. It smells like the world's best, most expensive cinnamon mouthwash.

marchlion said...

Jicky without the civet?! That would be like... a vodka martini without the vodka. Cake without sugar. Life without air. I had to go make myself a drink just to recover from the horror of that thought. The Citta di Kyoto is one of my new regulars, a stunning comfort scent, I wrote it up on Peppermint Patty's blog.

marlen said...

Colombina - maybe a touch of amber would have helped?

marlen said...

Laura - yes, I agree that cinnamon can defintiely overwhelm a scent. I haven't tried Mandy Aftel's scent but have tried Andy Tauer's "Maroc" and it is a winner. I also quite like Aqaba. As for CDG - unwearable imho. Opium is my step-mom's scent and therefore I don't even go near it.

marlen said...

March - yes, yes, I know, it's almost a sacrilege to suggest Jicky and then add without the vanilla and civet...but the scents really are similar, and Maharadjah is like a spicier Citta.

Cait Shortell said...

I love scents by PdN but every time I propose the idea of this one to the good taste police, I get the response: "sounds like a scented candle." That always keeps me from buying. It's the kiss of death to say it sounds like a scented candle.

Cait Shortell said...

I think Aftelier's Maroc is insanely sexy. I guess it's heavy on the nutmeg. Who knew? Nutmeg, it drives me wild.

Laura said...


The formula for Parfum de Maroc is included in _Aroma_, a cookbook cum fragrance book that Aftel co-authored with a Bay Area chef. So, if you're a Parfum de Maroc fanatic, you might want to get Aroma or at least have a look at it in the bookstore. Some of the ingredients are a bit hard to source (I'm working on it!) but even a simplified version of the formula is pretty nice.

Laura said...


I've been dying to get my paws on Le Maroc, ever since I read Luca Turin's rave review of it. I love Andy Tauer's blog; the way he writes about the process of perfume composition makes me think he must be insanely talented.

marlen said...

Laura - I'll be interviewing Andy soon for Basenotes and will likely do coordinating reviews for NST at that time...I'll keep you posted!