Niche house Parfums de Nicolaï takes inspiration from the shady sections of the French Riviera with Riviera Verbena, the newest release from the house. Patricia de Nicolaï, founder and head of the house, is a direct descendant of the Guerlains. She takes her longstanding knowledge of classic French perfumery and applies it to her releases today.
Nicolaï founded the house in 1989 alongside her husband Jean Louis Mishau. Instead of joining the family business, Nicolaï chose to blaze her own trail. Beginning at Florasynth, she made the move to Quest International where she would play a helping hand in the development of Lancome Tresor.
Riviera Verbena is packaged in a tall, slender bottle that is topped off with a shiny gold cap. Beneath it is an emblem held by a string, with the letter “N” etched into it. The juice that protrudes through is a light gold, almost yellow colour.
“Head to the French Riviera for a walk during the first fine days in the lush gardens of the Mediterranean. In the shade of palm trees, the dazzling freshness of lemon blends with fresh mint leaves and lemongrass. It is in this colourful picture that a green and tangy verbena takes shape. The sea spray, joined by the scent of thyme from the maquis and a delicate scent of jasmine, splashes the verbena at the water’s edge.”
At the top, Riviera Verbena begins with Petitgrain, Lemon Tree, Lemon Essence, Spearmint Essence, Thyme Essence, Cut Herbs and Black currant. Quite an ensemble of notes! From there, it transitions into its namesake ingredient, Verbena, along with Calone Absolute and Egyptian Jasmine. Finally, the scent concludes with Vetiver, Essence of Patchouli and White Musk.
Parfums de Nicolaï Riviera Verbena is currently available in three different sizes. The smallest is a 30ml bottle that retails for $51 USD. Then, there is a 100ml and 250ml jumbo size, each retailing for $154 USD and $270 USD respectively.