Ricci Ricci by Nina Ricci

Ok, here´s what´s been going on since I last posted: I am working on a brand new HP Pavilion laptop (a MAC Book was a bit too pricey for me right now), with Windows 7 and Microsoft Office 2007. Little did I know that Word was going to flummox the crap out of me. If you can, stick with your version of Word even if it is the moldy oldy one from 2003; this one has me wanting to fling this very impressive piece of electronic machinery out a window. Fortunately, I am in the basement.

Yesterday, I took my uncle to a doctor´s appointment at one of the area hospitals, and while we sat alone in the waiting area, I miraculously spied the December 2009 issue of Flare, one of Canada´s fashion magazines.  A current magazine in a physician´s waiting room? Why yes, it was nestled in amongst issues from 2007! Further perusal of the publication (the cover of which is graced by a rather frightening picture of Lady Gaga) yielded an article titled, “30 Years of Iconic Fragrances”.  Just as I was about to tuck into this essay, the doctor poked her head into the room and invited us into her office.  Without giving it a second thought, I rolled up the magazine and shoved it in my purse. Mind you, this copy does not have a mailing label affixed to it, so really, anyone could have left it there.  I swiped it; just like I once swiped a sizeable cardboard Mike´s Hard Lemonade promotional sign from an East York Toronto casual dining establishment, and two rather impressive etched beer glasses from a Boston Pizza, the location of which I will not share. You know how when you´re in a place that is unfamiliar or possibly foreign to you, you sometimes take leave of your senses and do things you would never normally consider? Needless to say, I have to remember that I live here now!

The opening paragraph of the essay quotes Karl Lagerfeld: “The reflection of an era happens in a fragrance,” he once said.  The more I think about this, the more I realize this statement is spot on. The essay cites Charlie as the late 70s feminist-career girl-independent-strong single woman scent, Yves Saint Laurent´s Opium as the Studio 54-sexy-party girl scent, Giorgio Beverly Hills as the inaugural big 80s, you want to kill the woman standing next to you in the elevator who poured a whole bottle of it over her head, scent. And then there´s Angel, which needs no editorializing whatsoever. From there it is CK One, which firmly cemented the fragrance barrier between my generation and the Gen X-ers. What era are we in presently? The celebu-scent one, of course. And for us “hardcore perfume connoisseurs” there are the “luxe scents getting luxer”, with their maddeningly limited distribution and wallet-busting price tags.  I don´t think I need to explain that one, either.  In the end, this article didn´t tell me anything that, as a perfumista, I didn´t already know.  But, I hang my head somewhat sheepishly and give you my solemn promise that I will try my best to refrain from swiping any more magazines from waiting rooms.

Ricci-Ricci-AdOn to the scent at hand: Ricci Ricci by Nina Ricci. I´m not a big fan of the moniker, but here again we have a bottle that is just too damn cute and a scent that is, well…middling at best. What piqued my curiosity was the fact that rhubarb is one of the notes. There are just not enough rhubarb fragrances out there, and I say that in all seriousness.  I love rhubarb. Put me in a room alone with a rhubarb pie and guess who will emerge victorious? Give me a fragrance with rhubarb in it and reduce me to tears.  It just never seems to play well with others. Here´s a suggestion: make a scent that smells like a rhubarb pie: add strawberries, flakey pie crust, vanilla ice cream, a generous dollop of whipped cream, and bottle it. I´ll be first in line for a case.

Ricci Ricci is not a bad scent; it does, however, fall into the fruit and patchouli camp that a lot of scents seem to be in lately. That trend was born with Angel; it is still alive and well and gift-boxed for the holidays at your local department store. Along with rhubarb, Ricci Ricci lists bergamot, Belle de Nuit flower, Centifolia rose, tuberose, sandalwood and patchouli as its notes. The tang of the rhubarb cuts through the flowers, giving Ricci Ricci an appealing tartness, but the patchouli kind of kills it for me. If there was just a minuscule drop of vanilla or tonka bean in it, I´d have my rhubarb pie in a bottle. Without that sweetness, it´s just another doppelganger adrift in the fragrance zeitgeist.

If you happen to be a fan of fruit and patchouli, I have an adorable little Ricci Ricci mini to give away. The Bay seems to have a never-ending supply of minis in their fragrance department. The fact that I´ve sucked up to a couple of really sweet SAs has been lucrative so far. So, if you´re interested, Lily will do the honours once again.  Her snacks of choice are now Lays Ketchup potato chips and Nativa Organics mini chocolate chip cookies from Shoppers Drug Mart.

  • Catherine says:

    I tried this once or twice and absolutely loved it! I think it’s the best thing she’s produced in years! Please enter me in your draw!

  • Hillary says:

    Please enter me in the draw! The commercial for this perfume is brilliant! I am also Canadian and understand ketchup chips:)I NEED this perfume

  • Nicole says:

    The commercials made me interested and after a quick google search for reviews yours came up first. A mini to be given away as well? It’s fate. Please enter me in the draw! 🙂

  • Cordelia says:

    Oh, j’adore the bottle! Please do enter me in the draw!

    Thank you so much! 🙂

  • Bunny says:

    ooo enter me Lily!- I love Lays Ketchup chips too! lol

    And what the Bay has all these minis? My Bay sucks!

  • Sharon2 says:

    Has Lily tried the Nativa Animal Cookies? She might feel right at home chewing the head off a mini-animal 😮

  • Laura M says:

    Please enter me! Lily, there is no Shoppers Drug Mart here, but you can have your pick of small OR, BETTER, LARGE chocolate chip cookies that I can find in NYC or environs!

    Woof to you!

  • Laura M says:

    Please enter me! Lily, there is no Shoppers Drug Mart here, but you can have your pick of small OR, BETTER, LARGE chocolate chip cookies that I can find in NYC or environs!

    Woof to you!

  • snowcrocus says:

    Rhubarb stalks at midnight! Sign me up please 😡

  • anna says:

    i cooked strawberry rhubarb pies all summer and they were delicious. i am also a big fan of rhubarb, so please enter me in the draw.
    i am actually attracted to weird chip flavors, so Ketchup Lays sound very enticing to me as well 😉

  • Ann Noel says:

    Love, love, love rhubarb — any way, shape or form! Your review is definitely making me crave rhubarb even tho’ it’s out of season 🙁 And I feel your pain on Word 2007. Wasn’t that familiar with 2003 either but at least that one was somewhat user-friendly. Still haven’t got the hang of the new one (guess I need to take a class or something). Anyway, thanks for the review and pls enter me in the draw.

  • Deanna says:

    I’d love to have the mini 🙂

  • pyramus says:

    Have you tried B*Men? It starts with a fairly crisp rhubarb (and citrus) that quickly takes on a sort of Lutens-y, cooked compote (or pie) quality. I think it’s tremendously interesting, and a lot more wearable than the aggressively sweet A*Men.

    • Nava says:

      No, that’s one I haven’t tried. I try always to steer clear of any Thierry Mugler scent that has an association with Angel. I promise to investigate.

  • ed hardy says:

    Agree. It’s a good article that I can apply this for my routine. I loved it, so usefully. Thanks 🙂

  • Christine L. says:

    Ketchup potato chips? Are there really such things? I’ll be on the lookout now for sure!
    I’d love to be added to the draw.
    Thank you!

    • pyramus says:

      We Canadians love our oddly flavoured potato chips. Must be that British influence. Ketchup, dill pickle, roast chicken, Greek feta and olive, Buffalo wing and blue cheese, General Tao chicken, pizza, you name it.

  • Tiara says:

    No need to enter me in the drawing – this one is NOT up my alley but it is a cute bottle.

    Not too long ago I switched to Office 2007. For about 2 weeks, I was using Word and continually thinking “where did they put that?” as many functions had a new home. The help function became my best friend for a while there!

  • janh says:

    Stewed rhubarb from my gramma’s garden in Strawberry Point, Iowa was a high light of some boring summer visits. Please enter me. And dont worry about stealing or swiping as we call it when it’s not worth much. I still have a fewe bar glasses I couldnt resist in Mexico.

  • Pantera Lilly says:

    Oh please put me in the draw! and I love rhubarb also. Thanks.

  • Claudia says:

    My mother once made a rhubarb compote with raisins and walnuts. I have no idea exactly what a “compote” is, but it had the consistancy of jam. Oh lord, that was at least 30 years ago and I can still remember how good it was. I don’t know where she got the recipe, but I’ve never found it. (heavy sigh)
    Hey, enter me in the drawing too. Now I’m hungry.

    • Nava says:

      Compote is boiled fruit, and I believe it is made the same way you make jam. Another term would be “stewed” fruits. Some of my family members still make it, but I refuse to eat it if it contains prunes. Don’t think I need to go any further with that! Google compote and see what you get. Trust me, you CAN google anything!

  • March says:

    Fruitchouli! I believe that’s Melissa’s patented word for it. No need to enter me in the draw, but that bottle is so darn cute!

    • Nava says:

      I hope she registered that patent because with all the fruitchouli out there, she could retire! :d

  • sherobin says:

    Although I can’t do Angel (too gourmand, and the chocolate note kills me!), I do love Euphoria, and that Mrs. Meyer’s limited edition spring cleaning rhubarb fragrance. So, Ricci Ricci sounds pretty fun to me. Please enter me in the draw.

  • Elizabeth says:

    P.S. Rhubarb with pineapple is a great combination too.

  • Elizabeth says:

    I’m a fan of patchouli and fruit—well, patchouli and anything actually.:”> Rhubarb is one of those hate-or-love things, too. I love. In fact, I grow it and share it around every Spring. Please enter me in the draw. And by the way, are those cat ears on the model in the Ricci Ricci by Nina Ricci ad? (Say the name aloud–it’s fun.) Why is she wearing driving gloves and cat ears with an evening dress? What shoes do you suppose would go with that outfit? Note for Lily: Anything you want, my dear.

    • Nava says:

      I think most people have a problem with rhubarb because it looks like bloody celery. Personally, it doesn’t bother me.

      As for the getup in the ad, if you’re gonna dress like a cat, then the only appropriate footwear would be kitten heels, no? 8-|

  • Kate says:

    You mean ‘fruitchouli’ the term Melissa coined? I will admit to loving Premier Jour (more of a fruity floral) back when I was a monogamous perfumista. Enter me in the drawing for the heck of it.

    Hope your uncle is okay. Lovely as always to see you here!

    • Nava says:

      Thanks Kate. I must have missed the post with Melissa’s coinage because “fruitchouli” pretty well nails it. I was thinking more along the lines of fruit salad piled on top of unwashed gym socks, but “fruitchouli is a much more eloquent descriptor!

  • Gretchen says:

    I take magazines from waiting rooms all the time and figure that it’s a fair trade, since I also gather up my own old mags and drop them off at the doctor’s or dentist’s office. So pass that magazine on and be absolved.
    I’m rather leery of the Ricci Ricci ingredient list, so leave me out of the draw. I can sniff it from a tester somewhere or other.

    • Nava says:

      Many thanks for the absolution. I traded Flare with my cousin for her copy of Chatelaine. Nigella Lawson is on the cover of that mag. Much more my speed than Lady Gaga. :d

  • Nancy says:

    Oh, I love rhubarb and it brings back so many memories of my granny’s garden that it grew in and when ready she made delicious pies and even a rhubarb dessert stew w/large tapioca pearls…Please enter me in the draw. Merci, N

    • Nava says:

      Tapioca pearls…those are big up here in bubble tea. Maybe there’s a rhubarb bubble tea?? Must investigate that./:)

  • Jill says:

    Hi, Lily. I love your name and can promise you delicious gluten free chocolate chip cookies. Tasty.
    Please enter me in the draw.

  • mals86 says:

    Patchouli kind of kills everything for me – although I have to mention yet again that against my will, I have fallen HARD for that MFK Lumiere Noire pf swoon swoon swoon.

    What *I* want is those ketchup potato chips, to wrap up in a box and put under the tree as a little giftie for my youngest, who covers everything (including chips) in ketchup. Small dry-roasted nut, takes after his father. (Was that mean? Hope not, I love him to death and he’s a sweet baby.) Must go google ketchup potato chips now.

    • Nava says:

      LOL! Ketchup chips are another one of those head-scratching Canadian delicacies, like poutine. I’ve loved them all my life. And to further prove the popularity of ketchup as a condiment, you can put ketchup flavored powder on your popcorn at Cineplex Odeon theatres, and you can buy ketchup flavored rice cakes, if you want a lower fat alternative to potato chips.

      As for patch, it needs to be juuuust right for me to like it, and fruit doesn’t make it any more appealing to my nose.

  • elizablue says:

    Ohhh I am very curious to try this–please enter me in the draw! Nina Ricci’s fragrances after L’Air du Temps have been pretty consistently girlishly pretty–and sometimes I want to feel girlishly pretty even though I am in my late 30’s…

    • Nava says:

      Actually, the copy I read on Ricci Ricci stated that their target demographic goes all the way up to age 45 if you can believe that.

  • DinaC says:

    My grandmother used to grow rhubarb in her garden in Massachusetts for pies, pickling, etc. I’d like to smell a scent with it, but not with the patchouli, I’m afraid. Not a patchouli fan here. I don’t understand the current craze for mixing patch with everything. I’ll have to keep my eye out for Ricci Ricci and take a sniff when I find it just to see what I think. Your idea of strawberry-rhubarb pie sounds yummy. 🙂

    • Nava says:

      Strawberries and rhubarb are very complimentary in a pie. I just love it. Patch on the other hand, should never go near any fruit in my opinion; but I think that sentiment puts me in the minority considering how popular that combo is in the world of fragrance.

  • Louise says:

    Shame, Nava I’ve nevah, evah swiped a magazine, from, say, my gym…:-$

    It sounds like a nice piece of reading, and I’m with you on the rhubarb, but in compote, especially. CdG’s Rhubarb seemed so promising, but just went blech on me.

    The Riccis of late have been pretty sad, but I liked the sweet Belles de Ricci series awhile back, especially Belle de Minuit. It was a floral gourmand, but very well done; I have a couple of bottles still hanging around. Curious that this Ricci Ricci Ricci has a “Belle de Nuit” note… :-

    • Nava says:

      Yeah, right! :d

      I was pretty disappointed in CdG Rhubarb as well, even though it is probably the most realistic rhubarb scent out there.

  • maitreyi1978 says:

    That is an adorable bottle. Please enter me in the draw. Thanks!