Parfumerie Generale Night Bird

Parfumerie Generale L’Oiseau de Nuit (Night Bird) is one of those irritating little treasures Pierre cooks up in his basement because he’s bored one night or because some overly enriched Eurotrash wants their own perfume, then it either doesn’t release outside of Paris or hides under all those numbers in the private collection part of their website. This particular one is Private Creation No. 199 for 148 euros. Why has no one named a perfume Night Bird before now?

The blurb from PG on this one is:  “modern leather … dedicated to the precious essence of cistus labdanum. A swirling core of fruity and flowery notes set afire by benzoin and the liqueur of davana.”  Think Bois Blond meets leather, and that will be about where you should be in your perfume diagram in your head.

It goes on with an almost hay-like blast, very earthy and pungent, and then some of the sweet base that you find in most of the PGs bubbles up to take the edge off the rawness of the open.  Early on is where it reminds me most of Bois Blond. If you don’t like Bois Blond, you likely are not going to like this.  It’s a very rich, almost sweet leather early on, though it’s not as sweet as Bois de Copaiba. The longer it is on, the less sweet it is, and it smooths out into a very smooth, elegant leather.  I adore it, it is easy to wear and just lovely. Those of you who thought Bois Blond was too hay’ey and wanted it to skew to the leathery end, L’Oiseau de Nuit might suit you better. If none of the PGs have worked for you thus far, this isn’t going to change that for you, it’s got the PG stamp/base all over it.

Y’all did read this over on Now Smell This yesterday, didn’t you?  If you didn’t, go read, we’ll wait.  You back yet?  Great. Could you just….


Annick Goutal is doing amber, myrrh and frankincense?!?!  As soon as I heard this, I phoned Tom at Bergdorf to see what he knew, and he’s trying to get more information on when it might arrive on our deprived shores. I read further in the cosmeticnews article, and it sounds like it is releasing in Paris in December (there will be an AG stop when we go and much begging to see if they have a drop to sniff or early bottles to sell – priming my charm now), with the edp going wordwide in 2008. It is a pricey little thing, with the 100 ml bottles individually going for over $200. That coffret of all three in 50 ml bottles for 1k is the parfum version, so for parfum, that’s really not that bad. Has Annick Goutal ever done a parfum? Maybe, but I’ve never sniffed one, nor can I recall another.  They had better be good, or someone will get a few choice, sharp words from me.  They can’t keep taking away the interesting stuff like Eau de Fier, finally give us back a great Three Gifts of the Magi set in time for Christmas and then have it suck.  I’m warning you, Annick Goutal, screw this up and!!!  *shakes finger*

So I just add my anticipation on this one to the new Parfum d’Empire three being released in October, the Iris Pallida from L’artisan in November, that By Kilian thing that’s coming out in October or November, and several other things that are all neatly entered on my Excel spreadsheet. It’s exhausting worrying about all of these, but they are so much fun to anticipate! Which new release coming up has you the most frenetic with anticipation?

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  • Flora says:

    Oy, I want “Night Bird” A LOT. However, I am also greedily anticipating the new Goutals – especially the myrrh one. I am ALL about the myrrh, bring it on! 😡

  • Kyra says:

    First, of course, happiest of b’days to the Posse’s resident endearing brit. Wish I could just wander over to Les Senteurs on my birthday.
    Secondly, as much as I love Querelle and Corps et Ames, must say the PG website is almost inpossible to navigate. Wish they would list a guide to connect names and numbers on the ltd and private collections.

    And I am waiting most impatiently for the Empires and Cuir de Lancome.

  • Shauna says:

    Anyone know if PG ships to the US? I think I need (yes need) night bird!!

    • Judith says:

      Yes, they do. And looking at their site, I would guess that no. 198 for 98 euros is the smaller (50 ml.) size of this, if you are interested in that (although I would check by email to be sure).

  • rosarita says:

    Have a fabulous time being whirlwinded (whirlwindered?)! Can’t wait to hear about the new PdEs.

  • violetnoir says:

    P, your mission, should you decide to accept it, is to go to Paris and sniff down those three AG fragrances. This message will self-destruct in ten seconds….

    Well, it’s been ten seconds, and we are all still here…Guess that didn’t work too well, but I’m betting on your magical charm when you visit one of AG’s boutiques in Paris. Work it, girl! @};-I particularly want to try the amber.

    Otherwise, dying to try the Guerlain QVlP and for the opening of the LeLabo store in LA in November.

    PG is not really my cup of tea, but say “osmanthus,” and I totally cannot wait to try the new PdE’s.

    Hugs and love!

  • Louise says:

    Stpp, you tease!

  • Gina says:

    Great post, Patty. Ok, this one sounds like something I must try. I absolutely love Bois Blond, I bought a bottle unsniffed because you said the magic word…”hay”. I’ll be buying a sample from you, for sure…I absolutely cannot resist hay AND leather.

  • donanicola says:

    Happy Birthday Lee! I know it will be well scented. Thankfully I have yet to fall for a PG so maybe the Night Bird will fly by. Just as well since my last trip to ebay has cost ALOT (Deneuve). However I am looking forward to Lancome’s Cuir as well after reading a wonderful review on the Perfumed Shrine.

  • Teri says:

    Happy Birthday, Lee. I think you owe it to yourself to choose something unusual, even outrageous, as a self-gift today….something remarkable that you can always remember you gave yourself for your birthday. :d

    I love most of the AGs (and they love me back), so I’m all a-twitter to try these new ones. (penciling in extra over-time for myself to help pay for my addiction) /:)

    • Lee says:

      Thanks, Teri. I got myself some Musc Ravageur – at long last, I’ve fallen for it. Only took a couple of years…

      Man, I smell good…:”>

  • AimeeinAustin says:

    Great post! Entertaining and informative, as always! Thank you for the Friday morning pick-me-up, but I have to admit I have a big problem with that gooey, dense, odd base in Bois Blond and so many of the Parfumerie Generales, so Night Bird probably ain’t for me.

    But I wonder if anyone could tell me who makes Cuir d’Iris that Judith mentioned? If that’s a PG, I might have to eat my words and try again with them. Iris and Leather is why I’ve horded enough Chanel #19 to die happy!

    Patty, March, and Lee, I’ve been giggling at your hilarious posts for months now, so it’s time to stop lurking. Happy Birthday, Lee! I’m so excited you mentioned Les Senteurs. All this summer’s posts about London perfume sniffathons have been an inspiration. I’m saving my pennies right now because I’m going to London in November and that’s my first stop, then Harrod’s, then the terracotta warriors at the British Museum, with frequent pub stops to warm up in between (I have my priorities).

    OK, so the new stuff I’m most dying to try are the not-new-at-all re-released Givenchy Mythiques — Le De, L’Interdit, Givenchy III, etc. I’ve seen them listed as in stores now, has anyone tried them?? How do they compare to the vintage stuff?

    • March says:

      It is a PG. You can buy a sample on the Perfumed Court (link on left column of blog). It doesn’t have the super-sweet PG base, which makes me happy. I only smelled it on Louise, and the iris faded on her. Great leather though.

    • Lee says:

      You should try Cuir Ottoman too (Parfums d’Empire).

      Thanks for the b’day wishes.

    • Patty says:

      Glad you broke your silence, Aimee!

      Oh, yeah, if you hate the PG base, The twittering night bird, although leathery, will NOT change your mind, I swear.

      March answer yours and my question about the iris.

      I’m jealous about your trip to London. I’m thinking when I go back to europe next spring with the boys and my mom (hubby only likes to go sit on beaches), I’ll do like 2-3 days in London first!

      I haven’t sniffed the new Givenchy reissues. Given the crap they’ve been doing the last few years, I’m so afraid of what they’ve done to them. I keep thinking it will be the perfume equivalent of dumping a quart of sugar in the Le De gas tank. I hope not, but their recent history says that’s the most likely. 🙂

      • AimeeinAustin says:

        Thanks muchly, March, Lee, and Patty.
        I appreciate the info. I shouldn’t get my hopes up about the Givenchy re-issues, then. Darn.
        OK, then, I’m hoping that Cuir Ottoman will work, and Silver Factory will hopefully be *my* Bond, since none of the others do much for me.
        Patty, you’re going to Paris, right? Have a wonderful time! It is truly the Mother Ship for perfumistas, and I’d love to get there again too, but London is calling for some reason. Can’t *wait* to get my mitts on Diorama from Harrod’s….

  • Divalano says:

    Oh wow. Patty, you are a bad, bad influence. I’m only 50/50 on PGs but I do love leather notes. I’ll have to trot over to Perfume Court & consider checking that out. And those AGs? I’m really intrigued & already mad that at that price there’s no way I’ll ever own one so I’d best not like them any more than I’ve ever liked anything else by her. And let’s don’t talk about the 3 new PdEs that I haven’t sniffed yet. Lee, Happy Birthday, but you will make me cross having someplace within reach where you can go try them.

    • Patty says:

      If you’re looking foir a leather that’s raw, this won’t be it. I like my leathers in all shape and sizes, from Cuir de Russie to Montale’s Oud Cuir d’Arabie. 🙂

      • Divalano says:

        OK, so noted. My fave leathers are Cuir Ottoman, Dzing, Bois d’Argent. After that Cuir Mauresque, Tabac Blond & CdA, the only Montale I remotely like.

  • Billy says:

    Iris Pallida for me too! mmmm, can’t wait!

    I’m also looking forward to Tom Ford for men and Cuir by Lancome.

    • Patty says:

      Yeah, there’s two more I need! I’ve heard good things about the Cuir, I think Miss carmencanada wrote about it on Helg’s blog this week, and it sounds pretty terrific!

  • Kelley says:

    Patty, Lianne at the AG boutique in Rotterdam said that Eau du Fier is still in production…just for it’s die-hard fans. They are making so little of it that it is flying under the radar. She only had a few bottles left (Tom got two bottles and I bought one) from the recent shipment. Postage is expensive but it’s worth it.

    • Patty says:

      Thanks, Kelley! I knew they had it at the Paris boutique, the ever-kind Judith snagged me a bottle on her last trip. My lament is that they won’t put it into some wider distribution, which basically means i want them to make sure I can get it at my local drugstore in Kansas. 🙂

  • Juliaforsberg says:

    I’m feeling sorry for my friends and family. They will probably recieve stange knitted stuff for christmas gifts since I will have spent my last, hard earned money on Bond no 9 Silver Factory and L’Artisan Iris Pallida;))

    Nah, probably not but those are the ones I’m craving[-o<

    • Patty says:

      Oh, yeah, those two are on the top of my list too! I think it’s going to be interesting to see what people think of the Andy from Bond. I think it’s truly one of the most interesting things they’ve done, but it ain’t no mainstream scent. 🙂

  • perfumequeen says:

    those are all on my Gimme List. As a side note, I am pretty sure I’ve seen a songes Parfum as well as snother AG parfum at the local Saks. Of course they were on the veeerrrry top shelf heavily guarded by uniformed sprayers of some celebrity defunct perfume…
    c’est la vie….

    • Patty says:

      Really? I need to visit AG when we are in Paris and see if they have any parfums, in between hiney kissing to get my hands on those new ones. 🙂

  • Judith says:

    OMG! I think I hate PG–I sounds as if I really NEED this. I have already fallen hard for Cuir d’Iris (which a lovely perfume friend sent me a decant of)–and now I hear about this! I love Bois Blond and I love leather, so it sounds as if I’m sunk! The only thing that could save me is the word “sweet.” BoisdeC is definitely too sweet on me–esp. the opening–but then, you say this is not so. . . .

    • Patty says:

      Cuir d’Iris?! Don’t make me go trolling thorugh my own store just to find this. 🙂

      • March says:

        P, the Cuir d’Iris is another PG, Nancy has it, I smelled it on Louise yesterday. It’s fabo at first, but she killed all the iris. Very nice leather though, and not that sweet PG base.

        • Lee says:

          If you’re after iris, that new Equistrius number has plenty in the first 15 minutes… so pure and bright…

      • Judith says:

        Yeah, Patty, I think you should do that–it has a wonderful, almost vintage feel (on me at least:)

  • Louise says:

    Er, um, Patty, could you pull be out of the er, smut filter?


    • Patty says:

      That’s so weird! I went looking for you (I need to shower now) and couldn’t find you in the smut filter! First it was picking on Maria, and now you. 🙁 Are you two just the dirty girls or what?

      • Louise says:

        Yessiree, Mam. Dirty gals.

        My comments were simple (for me): gimme sniff of the new Parfums d’Empire-especially the Osmanthus, but the Fougere, and the horsy one, too.

        I am really hoping the Goutals do better than most on me-that is, hand around awhile.

        Happy weekend!

        • March says:

          Louise, I went and looked for you too!:o:-? There was a lot of gross, manky stuff in there that I should have sprayed with Haramens, but I couldn’t find your comment…[-x

  • March says:

    Hon, if anyone can get ahold of those Annicks and get them over here for our enjoyment, it is you. They are my main focus of excitement right now, and you’re right — they better be fabulous. They certainly SOUND fabulous.

    Didn’t Songes come out in a parfum? Maybe not. It was one of the failures on me. Pretty bottle, though.

    • Patty says:

      Well, you can count on me kissing major French hinder while I’m there trying to get a sample or bottle or two to bring home. Does that leave a mark? French hinder kissing, I mean? I just don’t want people to know.

      • March says:

        It does leave marks. And a bad taste in your mouth, like aged fromage. But we, your loyal compadres, are worth it!<):)

  • Lee says:

    Well, if this birthday boy can muster the energy (busy work week, even though I’m part-time + incipient cold = lack of impetus), I’m off to Les Senteurs in the next hour or so to sniff the Parfum d’Empire jobbies – they have sample bottles.

    I wonder what scented treat I’ll pick up for myself?

    • Louise says:


      • Lee says:

        Back atcha. I’ll reply to your mail soon enough – thanks for the hunk – he looked like a tree trunk! I don’t have much time this w’end – Matt’s whirlwinding me!

    • Dusan says:

      Happy birthday, Lee ma boy! Make sure you treat yourself to a scented something today. I’ll be wearing Déclaration and thinking of you.

      • Lee says:

        Well, I get a heap of free samples from Les Senteurs, along with a bottle of something…

        And I’ll tell all about those Parfum d’Empire scents next week – two are potentially brilliant!

    • Silvia says:

      Happy birthday sniffage ! Everything is allowed today…<:-p

    • March says:

      Birthday!!! Are you old enough to drink in pubs yet? Maybe Matt could take you out for a pint and some darts or snooky or that thing with the wickets. Cribbage? No, that’s not right.:-?

      • Lee says:

        Only one year to the big something-zero. And no, I don’t mean 10, or even 20, or even 30, as you well know, Marchie! Praise be to those monkey gland injections

    • perfumequeen says:

      *sings birthday song, Marilyn Monroe style* Happy Birthday, it’s my Birthday too!! What awesome people we are to be born on this day. Cheers, and I will have a glass of pink champagne in your honor this evening.


      • Lee says:

        You know, Chaya actually did leave me her rendition of that on my phone earlier! I got goosebumps alongside lovegiggles…

        Thank you.

    • Patty says:

      Happy birthday, why didn’t you say something?!?!?! Okay, now you’re in my birthday calendar, also known as the black hole where birthdays go in and Patty has no idea what happened to her entry when your next birthday rolls round.

      Do you HAVE to torture me on that Parfum d’Empire sample? Who loves you the best, and who would you share with, and what can I do for you to sniff them? 🙂 Offer whatever you have to on my behalf to Les SEnteurs.

      • Lee says:

        They only have these tiny 10 ml sample bottles but Fabien / Lucien / Fabrice (I forgot his name – I was so perfume-crazed – even though he is the PERFECT SA – sample crazy!) still made me 1ml decants…

        I might post em your way in the near future, though Robin will be craving the Osmanthe INTENSELY. It’s got her written all over it…

    • Maria says:

      Happy birthday, wonderful Lee! I’m so glad you got yourself some Musc Ravageur. I know you smell mahvelous.

      If you really want to try Haramens (and I would advise against it), I’ll send you my sample–since March has already gotten one. I’ll do this for you, Lee, even if it means I’ll have to endure long interrogations about my terrorist ties if the vial breaks en route. b-(

      Happy, happy birthday! :x<:-p

    • violetnoir says:

      Happy Birthday, Lee! Hope you have had a blissfully scentful day of fun!


    • Judith says:

      Have a wonderful birthday, Lee!!! It must be a good week for men. Mr. Colombina just had his, and my DH’s is tomorrow!<:-p

  • Maria says:

    The release that has me most breathless with anticipation is Andy Tauer’s Incense Extreme. That’s the one he’s going to release first, but my true and Kurt’s true unbridled passion is for his Incense Rose. (There should be an acute accent on the last e.) Some of us have threatened to camp outside his home if his incense fragrances don’t get released–and we mean it.

    I am not excited at all about Annick Goutal and her fickle scents that don’t last on me longer than it takes to boil an egg, not even Eau de Fier. [-( We are so not meant for each other.

    L’Oiseau de Nuit is a gorgeous name, and you chose a most evocative picture to illustrate it. Labdanum is one of my favorite notes, in perfumery and in the garden. I hope it’s better than another super-exclusive of theirs, Haramens, which to me smells like milk boiled next to a pair of underpants that have been worn by a sweaty, aroused woman. Needless to say, March is getting my sample bottle. :-&

    • Lee says:

      …and now I want to sniff Haramens…

      • Divina says:

        ..yep…thanks for admitting it first..helps me admit it too 😛

        • Louise says:

          Maria-you were soooo right about Haramens. There are few scents that really gag me…this was one. I can’t even see as nice an analogy as the panties of aroused woman dipped in milk…or even sour milk. I rarely scrub, but begged for any fluid to remove Haramens (lighter fluid would have been fine). It made Secretions M. seem quite lovely in comparison.

          • March says:

            Oh, I am so excited now to sniff my sample vile of Haramens I got yesterday! How do you think it would go over with the flower guild at church this morning? I’ll tell them it’s old vase water…

          • Maria says:

            Louise, it only LOOKS as if I was kind. In childhood I detested the smell of milk, especially boiled milk. I might add that the milk has a weird touch of sesame oil. But I mustn’t think about it anymore; I’ll retch. I too scrubbed and scrubbed and couldn’t do it fast enough.

    • Patty says:

      Okay, I think I need to sniff Haramens too now!

      So how many incenses is Andy doing? I smelled one, and I liked the mechanic thing a lot more, but I didn’t hate it in the least, and I suspect it’s been changed since then. Tell more!!!

      • Maria says:

        He’s working on two frankincense-based fragrances, and they’re wonderful. The Extreme is actually his favorite baby, so he’ll probably release that one first–but most likely not till early 2008. You can read a blow-by-blow account of my happy experiences with the two fragrances on Andy’s blogs for 23 and 24 August.

  • Gaia says:

    That perfume diagram in my head has filed this PG under Gimme Gimme Gimme. Up until now, the only PG I didn’t like was the yuzu thing. Pierre doesn’t need to do citrus and I don’t need to wear it.

    As for Goutals, I’ve searched high and low for years to see if there was a parfum. Never found or heard of any. So, Bergdorf, here I come.