|Photo: Bois Noir de Robert Piguet|
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Bois Noir is one of five fragrances in the Nouvelle Collection by Robert Piguet that was introduced in 2012. Bois Noir is created by the “housenose” Aurelien Guichard.
Bois Noir starts almost loud with potent dry but warm woody-peppery notes and I suppose it’s the peppery aspects of the cedarwood as oud is not included in the notelist but there is of course possible there is a pinch of it in the blend. In the topnotes and most of the middlenotes Bois Noir is close to the powerful Cuirs by Carner Barcelona, but Cuirs is rougher, with more distinctive burned, leathery, woody, peppery, spicy notes. Cuirs has almost a hint of the smell of a hot sausage. Other fragrances that comes to my mind is Nasomatto Black Afgano even if that one is sweeter and with a slight, dark herbal touch. Also Montale Dark Oud with peppery oud that is balanced by warm sandalwood, is in the same style.
As Bois Noir drys down it becomes smoother and more balsamic in character. The patchouli is not evident as a distinctive note, it’s just there balancing all the woodiness with it’s earthy backdrop. Resiny and balsamic notes are stepping forward the more Bois Noir dries down. When settling in the base the woody notes is almost balsamic-creamy with a touch of sweetness from (I suppose) the labdanum supported with some delicate musk. This final stage lasts for much longer than 24 hours and it’s one of the most beautiful woody accords that I have experienced in a long time: It’s very addictive.
Bois Noir is a fragrance that is tricky to handle. As it’s very concentrated one has to be very careful when applying (two-three spritzes), if not it could be overhelming and almost headache-inducing. Even if similarities with other fragrances mentioned it’s an interesting fragrance that wins in the long run. It’s important not to dismiss it as another Cuirs or Black Afgano in it’s earlier stages, the following parts are well worth waiting for.Bois Noir is the best interpretation I smelled so far in this woody-peppery-spicy- style. It’s a fragrance with a very strong precense, a real statement, but without taking over the whole space.
To me Bois Noir is totally unisex even if I think that the “average perfume consumer” will say it’s leaning to the masculine side. Bois Noir is the perfect scent for the autumn, the storng, woody, peppery accords in the top and the almost creamy, spicy woodiness in the base perfectly accompanying a walk during a chilly autumnday with colourful rustling leaves around the feet. It’s also a good officescent at least I got compliments wearing it: “A very good smelling frag, it smells like autumn”.
Notes: Gaiacwood, cedarwood, sandalwood, patchouli, balsam, cistus labdanum absolute