The Scented Hound

Abbreviated perfume & fragrance reviews from one man's perspective


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Cartier – XII L’Heure Mysterieuse

WHAT I SMELL:  L’Heure Mysterieuse has a strange opening that’s full of smoke and tar as well as a heavy patchouli that is thick, chewy and rather like paste.  The smoke rises off of the skin like some kind of industrial component.  This is a very bizarre as I can’t see how the opening brings promise of anything beautiful or gentile….or something that represents “Cartier.”  Thankfully, after a short time, the tar and heavy smoke begin to lift.  A dried flatness of incense appears instead and the perfume starts to belie a more gentle persona.  But don’t get me wrong, there’s a strength to the perfume in that it has a fighting energy buried beneath the smoky subdued radiance.  After quite some time a light floral appears, once again softening the former intensity.  To me, L’Heure Mysterieuse is a hard perfume to describe, but I can tell you that it has a classic old world heart that reminds me of fragrances from the 1970s.

From the Cartier website:

Silence was on the prowl. You could hear it breathing, lurking like desire. The calmness felt only temporary. Drowsiness gained life, slowly jasmine and heavily PATCHOULI. This was the time for listening to your own pulse at the edge of abandon, like a reverse countdown, a voyage into the intimate where everything both takes shape and disintegrates. Withdraw into yourself, escape and focus your mind on your inner self, reaching that point where self-awareness resides. Was it elemi gum, CORIANDER day? Was it incense, FRANKINCENSE night? Soon you must leave the juniper darkness… but not quite yet. First, savor L’HEURE MYSTÉRIEUSE for just one hour – no longer, that’s a promise – extracted from deep within, and rediscover your own personal roots.

La Liberté guidant le peuple. Eugène Delacroix. 1830

WHAT IT SMELLS LIKE TO ME:  La Liberté.

THREE WORDS THAT DESCRIBE L’HEURE MYSTERIEUSE:  smoky, intense, retro

WHAT OTHERS ARE SAYING ABOUT L’HEURE MYSTERIEUSE:  AustralianPerfumeJunkies, Bois de Jasmin, Katie Puckrick Smells

BOTTOM LINE:  L’Heure Mysterieuse Is a like and not a love for me.  The opening is weirdly interesting, but the drydown redeems the perfume as it turns into a retro classical scent.

  • Bone Rating: 3 out of possible 5 bones
  • Scent: Oriental Spicy
  • Nose:  Mathilde Laurent
  • Classification: Unisex (but to me it leans masculine)
  • Expense: $1 for 75 ml eau de parfum


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Pasha de Cartier Edition Noire

Pasha de Cartier Edition Noire

WHAT I SMELL: Pasha de Cartier Edition Noire opens with citrus and mint that’s clean and cool.  The fragrance then moves quickly towards a slightly honeyed woody cedar.  Additionally, there seems to be an almost hidden chocolate accord buried in the mix, like a semi-sweet bakers chocolate.   After around five minutes the fragrance begins to sweeten and sparkle.  After another five minutes the cedar really takes over, but it’s highlighted with a layered of sprinkled brown sugar and tobacco that makes the fragrance pop.  Add some patchouli in and in the end you’re left with a lightly woody patchoulied fragrance with hints of chocolate.

From the Cartier website:

Wearing Pasha de Cartier means sporting a fragrance that has a cool elegance and the power of seduction. Cartier has created a new edition of the legendary Pasha de Cartier fragrance. The subtlety of this fragrance comes from the hint of green and fresh citrus, which perfectly balances the woody amber and cedarwood notes.

cedarblockWHAT IT SMELLS LIKE TO ME:  Like this cedar stencil on a  pantone card.

THREE ADJECTIVES THAT DESCRIBE PASHA DE CARTIER EDITION NOIRE:  woody, OK, semi-sweet

WHAT OTHERS ARE SAYING ABOUT PASHA DE CARTIER EDITION NOIRE:  I couldn’t find any.

BOTTOM LINE:  An OK Pasha de Cartier flanker, but nothing that sets the world on fire.  But sometimes you don’t want to set the world on fire.  Funny though, with “noire” in the name, I was expecting something darker or more elegant for evening wear.

  • Bone Rating: 3 out of 5 possible bones
  • Scent: Woody Aromatic
  • Classification: Masculine
  • Expense: $105 for 100ml EdT


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Roadster by Cartier

I purchased Roadster for my better half because I love to smell him in it.  I think of this as his “power” scent, telling him to wear it when he has an important meeting.  Funny thing is that I have never worn it myself so I thought I would give it a spin.  Unfortunately, as much as I love it on him, I didn’t find wearing it myself so appealing.  Don’t get me wrong though, this is a great fragrance.

Roadster goes on with a fresh blast of mint.  This is not a super green mint, but one that’s more tailored.  It has a spicy edge that makes is smooth and masculine.  Roadster has a wonderfully commanding presence that runs the line between being green yet warm.  And to boot, it has great sillage and is long-lasting.  Perfect for when you need to wear a “power” scent!

Roadster Notes: Bergamot, Spearmint, Peppermint, Cashmere Wood, Patchouli, Cistus Labdanum, Vanilla

  • Bone Rating: 4 out of 5 possible bones
  • Scent Type: Aromatic – Fougere
  • Classification: Masculine