Underappreciated gems: Annick Goutal Les Nuits d’Hadrien

Oh, what to wear, what to wear? When summer doesn’t quite want to let go and give way completely to autumn; when it’s October and the daytime temps in your neck of the woods are still in the 80s and it doesn’t cool down until nearing sundown. When you can’t justify wearing your fall cozies all day. When I went digging around in the perfume drawers, I found out what: Annick Goutal Les Nuits d’Hadrien.

A rush of citrus and green in its opening refreshes and delights. But not in the same vein as its eau de cologne-ish hadrien 2forerunner Eau d’ Hadrien, instead, finding its distinctive voice via aromatic cypress, amber and a touch of patchouli, white musk and amber. Its herb-tinged aromatic brightness lingers for while, then with a few soft sighs, lets go to create the lightest of oriental veils.

Since it has Nuits in its name, you might expect a deeper, headier scent, and one that lasts longer, but its beauty seems to be of a fleeting nature, but just right for a two-hour social occasion or any time you don’t need your scent to be a marathon runner. I wore the EDT (three spritzes, which for a notorious under-sprayer like me is a lot) and didn’t feel overpowering at all. I do plan to try the EDP to see how the scent fares in that strength, however.

Les Nuits d’ Hadrien pulls off the trick of being simultaneously refreshing and uplifting and warm. And for me at least, it’s what I’d love to smell like naturally (sort of a your-skin-but-better aura).

Here’s what Surrender to Chance says about it, and I think they’re pretty much spot-on:
A citrus aromatic fragrance inspired by the wondrous scent of a garden in Tuscany under a starlit sky.

I went to a backyard party the other night and this was perfect: The day had been warm (mid- 80s) but the night was cooling down nicely and this scent followed the temperature change beautifully, and wasn’t heavy enough to interfere with the food being served. And its outdoorsy vibe made it just right for an evening spent on the patio and chatting around the fire pit.

In fact, wearing this Hadrien awhile reminded me that it’s a pretty nice all-season scent and I need to reach for it more often.

Notes from Fragrantica: lemon, green mandarin, bergamot, tangerine, caraway, cypress, juniper, ylang-ylang, amber patchouli, musk, vanilla and sandalwood.

BTW, not that it really matters, but Luca Turin wrote in The Guide that Les Nuits d’Hadrien reminded him of a particular salad he had made, but I think he mostly liked it.

What scent(s) do you turn to when temperatures straddle seasons?

  • “Les Nuts”- Les Noix… what have I walked into here? 🙂 Anyway, I’ve been feeling a bit thrilled for the cooler weather lately, as I only own a handful of lighter, summer frags; most of my collection is heavy-base-noted stuff. So, I’ve been exploring the facets of a denh-al-oudh some days, and breaking out some of the amber frags which I think go so nicely with the earthy, moist scent of fallen leaves and fruit in the air.

    I’ve tried ‘Les Nuits d’Hadrien’, and- though I agree that it is charming- it simply goes *poof!* on my skin in about 2 hours or less… But overall I love Annick Goutal: ‘Les Orientalistes’, ‘Sables’, ‘Vetiver’– all long-lasting masterpieces that I could not be without! This new news of the change-in-hands scares me! (who knows what they may decide to cut from production?!)

    • Ann says:

      Hi, Elaichi, and welcome! Yes, we can be a bit silly at times, but all in good fun. I’m pretty happy that cooler weather is here also — time to bring out the big guns. You are right about AG; it is a wonderful line and it would be a shame to cut or change anything from it. I guess all we can do is stock up on our faves and hope for the best.

  • Kismet429 says:

    Les Nuts is one of my all-time favorites and is particularly lovely this time of year. I wear the EDP and find that it lasts all day. It doesn’t get a lot of play on the scent blogs–glad to find another fan.

    If Goutal has been sold, may be time for a back-up bottle!

    • Ann says:

      Yay, Kismet — I’m happy to find another fan, too! I really must try the EDP. I did layer the EDT over the remnants of an amber I had on, and it lasted somewhat longer. The AG sale is a little scary, isn’t it?

      • Ann says:

        BTW, I did try the body lotion or cream and it was lovely and seemed to help!

        • Kismet429 says:

          Haven’t yet fallen down the rabbit hole of scented lotion, but really must try them.

          I also keep thinking that I should try Eau d’Hadrien; I’m a fool for a citrus topnote. (And looking at my original post, I meant Les NUITS, not Les Nuts, which would be quite a different scent–eh? A musk, perhaps? I shall write to AG immediately and suggest it as a new flanker….)

          • Ann says:

            Too funny, Kismet! I read right over that, but you’re right, that would be a scent of a whole ‘nother stripe, wouldn’t it? 🙂

          • Ann says:

            And now that you mention it, there are some days when I feel like “Les Nuts” is my signature fragrance, ha!

  • Dina C. says:

    I haven’t tried that AG. My favorite one by AG is Heure Exquise, which works really well this time of year. I’ve been wearing L’Ambre Des Merveilles a lot lately, and Moschino L’eau Cheap and Chic (another slightly ambery incensey skin scent) a lot as we get into fall weather. Thanks for the lovely description of this one. I enjoyed your review.

    Just want to mention that i tried Harney & Sons Paris tea yesterday for the first time, in a gelato shop, and it was delicious. 🙂 Have a good week, Ann!

    • Ann says:

      Hi, Dina! Thanks for sharing your favorite scents for this time of year; I like the Merveilles, too, but need to revisit the Heure Exquise, and try the Moschino as I’ve heard good things about it. And so glad you liked the Harney tea — it’s a nice line. Have a great week, too!

  • Tiara says:

    This didn’t stick around long enough for me to ever love it. I gave away my decant ages ago. On these crisp mornings, I’ve been reach for Soivohle’s Marron Caramel (LE) or SSS Femme Jolie (sadly DC). Both last longer Hadrian, but go away quickly enough that when it warms up I move on to something else. Songes is my favorite Goutal. If it ever disappears….not going to think about that!

    • Ann says:

      So sorry it didn’t last at all on you, Tiara. I plan to try the EDP and the body cream to stretch out the goodness on my skin. Must try your choices soon, esp. the Soivohle, as it sounds lovely.

  • eldarwen22 says:

    It’s really cooling off in my neck of the woods and it’s mostly either heavy hitters or mild perfumes. Shalimar EDP is good for when it’s in the 50’s or 60’s or Havana Vanille for me. No. 5 in EDP form can be good for fall.

    • Ann says:

      Nice choices there! I really can’t do Shalimar or No. 5 much but the Havana Vanille is just divine for fall. Enjoy!

  • Sherri says:

    Oh, Ann, you’re right! I never thought of it, but Nuits d’Hadrien would be perfect for right now! And look, even the bottle has that autumny look with the gold bow! I think many of Annick Goutal’s perfumes are under appreciated gems, and, sadly, it is getting near impossible to purchase them anywhere here in Nashville (other than Petite Cherie, Hadrien and Gardenia Passion at Nordstrom’s). Dillards discontinued them, Anthro no longer has them, and the owner of the one store that sells some niche perfumery, Private Editions, told me they simply do not sell (Creed is the big seller for their store, fyi). So sad.

    Yesterday I put on Trish McEvoy Blackberry Vanilla Musk and it seemed to work nicely–I can stil smell it this morning. For the most part though, I am so excited it’s fall, I have been dragging out Cuir Beluga and SDV and wearing them–80 degrees or not! Hope you all are having a great October!

    • Ann says:

      Hi, sweetie, so glad to see you! Glad you like the Nuits, too, and you are so right about the bottle. I am sorry, though, that AG is getting harder to find there. Last time I checked our Saks here had the full range if you ever want some, but that’s about it. Enjoy your BVM, CB and SDV (sheesh, alphabet soup 🙂 ) — those are great and really put you in a fall frame of mind …

  • Portia says:

    I love the Annick Goutal range Ann, though I fear Pacific Amore will not leave it in as good a state as they found it. Sadly this and it’s other Hadrian set all disappear in moments from my skin but the scent on others is lovely.
    Portia xx

    • Ann says:

      Oh, no, Portia — I did not realize the line had been bought out. Doesn’t that Amore brand do high-end skin care or am I thinking of something else? Anyway, glad you like the Nuits, but it is fleeting. I may try the EDP and/or the body lotion to see if that helps it last.

  • Ncmyers says:

    I’ve been reaching for SL Bois de Violette, PdN Sacrebleu, and Breath of God on these coolish/warmish days. Not all at once, though!

    • Ann says:

      Oooh — all together that might be quite a fireworks show! 🙂 I really like your first two but haven’t tried the BoG yet.

  • Elia says:

    Not tried it yet, although there’s been so much mention of it. I guess that’s why I still want to get around to trying it even though to date most Annick Goutal fragrances have left me cold

    • Ann says:

      Hi, Elia! Do give this one a try — it might just be one that works for you. But as I and others have mentioned, it’s not a heavy-hitter, but if you really like it, that’s OK, just happily re-spritz.

  • rosarita says:

    You know, I’m sure I’ve tried this but can’t recall how itssmelled. Your description sounds very appealing! We’re having similar weather here and I’ve been enjoying Bottega Veneta nearly every day. It’s smooth leather elegance feels perfect right now.

    • Ann says:

      Hi, dear! Oh, wish I had known — could have sent you a bit of the EDT. Next time. I think it’s lovely and refreshing but some might think it boring. BV is so nice; so glad you are loving it. Have you tried the body products?