Parfums MDCI

December 15th, 2006

MDCIParfums MDCI is an exclusive French perfume line that believes “fine fragrances should be an art more than an industry, a source of pleasure, pride and beauty more than a commodity”. It distinguishes itself not only in giving recognition to perfumer’s talent and their freedom to explore but also in unique bottle design – “the Art of Crystal brought to its highest level”. The inspiration came from the Renaissance, old buildings, sculptures, the Louvre, the Greek and Roman antiques (more details about their bottle design here). “A modern evocation of these pieces of beauty” is the idea behind MDCI fragrances. Today Marina from Perfume-Smellin’ Things and I are sharing our thoughts on MDCI perfumes.

Parfums MDCI currently consists of five fragrances: three for women (created by Francis Kurkdjian, the nose behind Armani Mania, Guerlain Rose Barbare, Narciso Rodriguez For Her) and two for men (created by Pierre Bourdon, known for YSL Kouros, Dior Dolce Vita, Davidoff Cool Water, and Stephanie Bakouche, a young perfumer).

Promesse de L’Aube (FK No 1) – bergamot, mandarin, lemon, ylang-ylang, jasmine, sandalwood, tonka beans, vanilla. An oriental floral “pour le jour” (daytime wear). With a tart lemony beginning, the scent settles into a sandalwood based, velvety ylang-ylang and jasmine blend. Even though it doesn’t strike me as particularly original and actually reminds me of this year’s F de Ferragamo, I find it very pretty and well-blended. It’s a fairly inoffensive, subdued floral – a daytime office scent, fitting well with a business casual outfit.

Rose de Siwa (FK No 2) – litchi, peony, hawthorne, Moroccan and Turkish roses, violet, cedar, musk, vetiver. A “tout en rose”, “moments doux” scent (all pink, for soft moments). It has an incredibly bright and sunny beginning with a fruity rose and a touch of peony. The scent is all about radiant, honeyed, dewy roses with a fizzy, almost aldehydic effect. Very much along the lines of Rose d’Ete by Rosine. A weekend romantic getaway.

Enlevement Au Serail (FK No 3) – bergamot, mandarin, ylang-ylang, jasmine sambac, tuberose, Turkish rose, wallflower, patchouli, sandalwood, vanilla, vetiver. “Parure pour le soir” – an evening attire. A sultry interplay of ylang-ylang, jasmine, and tuberose on the base of embracing patchouli and what seems to be animalic creamy sandalwood. The flowers sort of dissolve in the vetiver-sandalwood-patchouli blend, exuding a most gorgeous aroma. Very much along the lines of a classic Guerlain, No 3 is by far my favorite. It requires fine clothing, sensuality, and an agenda.

Ambre Topkapi (Pierre Bourdon) – oakmoss, vetiver, sandalwood, rosewood, leather, Darjeeling tea, amber, musk, vanilla, jasmine, violet, cinnamon, cardamom, grapefruit, pineapple, melon, nutmeg, ginger, basil, thyme, lavender. Meant “to incarnate strength, power, wealth, and the conflicting feelings” of the sculpture on the men’s flacon, it manages to do just that, except in a very modern way. Its marine vetiver opening is reminiscent of many men’s colognes. The leather is airy and rosy in a sort of politically correct way. Its velvety, slightly spicy drydown makes me think of a freshly shaven, showered, starched, and stylishly-shod young businessman whose conflicting feelings range between the color of his shoes and the choice between single or double shot espresso.

Invasion Barbare (Stephanie Bakouche) – grapefruit, bergamot, violet leaves, thyme, cardamom, lavender, ginger, cedar, bourbon vanilla, musk. Its dry, herbal-aromatic opening, with a very soft interplay of spices, is reminiscent of Cuir Beluga or Sables by Annick Goutal. My second favorite of the line, the scent is what I’d call different, and the kind that’ll have to grow on you. Thyme, cardamom, and lavender on a vanilla base create an association of some herb-infused honey. Stephanie Bakouche draws inspiration from her travels, so no wonder her scent is so, shall we say, unbiased and peculiar. It can be easily worn by women – perfect for non-conformists like myself.

For more information on the pricing of the MDCI perfumes, please refer to their web site.

Image source:

Entry Filed under: Uncategorized


  • 1. chaya ruchama  |  December 15th, 2006 at 6:47 am

    SO wonderful to read the notes, hear your point of view…
    Marinochka was a darling, and thanks to her, I smelled these yesterday…WOW.

    I adored the FK’s paricularly- all of them.
    They are incredibly well-blended, succulent.
    I’m just grateful for the opportunity.
    Some things belong in a museum, since we can’t afford them
    These enter into that category…

    Happy Chanukkah, everyone !
    [Instead of military victory, I choose to enjoy the ‘miracle’ aspect of this holiday]

  • 2. Leopoldo  |  December 15th, 2006 at 8:10 am

    May everyone experience something of the miraculous in their lives!

    I’ve said what I think on Marina’s blog (and lucky you, Chaya, my love goddess) and the more I think about it the uglier those bottles become – the colour contrast between jus and crystal, the odd proportions. Peculiar.

    I guess I’m not a fan of fancy. Fancy that.

  • 3. newproducts  |  December 15th, 2006 at 8:25 am

    I love it when Marina and you share your views on the same scents. I get to see the same scents from different eyes. I especially love your description of Pierre Bourdon’s scent. I can just picture that young businessman in my head, having a minor “crisis” over the decision of “single or doube shot espresso”! :)

  • 4. Elle  |  December 15th, 2006 at 8:40 am

    I agree w/ Chaya, I liked all of the FK scents, which is fortunate since I have a new found crush on him. #3 was my favorite also. Delicious to the extreme. I’m going to have to retry the one by Stephanie Bakouche. Given yours and Marina’s reviews, I’m thinking I didn’t give it enough of a chance. I’m really glad I got to try these (thanks to you), but I’m once again wondering *why* I couldn’t have fallen in love w/ and married a rich mafioso? What was I thinking?

  • 5. Patty  |  December 15th, 2006 at 9:17 am

    I’m not feeling these. I wonder why? Exlusive overload? :)

    At least there is an explosion of new good scents along with bad ones. :)

  • 6. Marina  |  December 15th, 2006 at 9:38 am

    We have the same favorites, dear Scent Twin :-)
    Funny how differently we perceived Bourdon’s scent.

  • 7. tmp00  |  December 15th, 2006 at 11:10 am

    I am feeling very curmudgeonly about these. I just can’t get over the high ostentation factor of the packaging. Perhaps in person they radiate beauty and refinement, but the pictures make them look tacky in a Tony Montana kind of way.

  • 8. Robin  |  December 15th, 2006 at 11:35 am

    Happily for me, not a one of these sounds worth jumping through hoops for!

  • 9. March  |  December 15th, 2006 at 11:54 am

    Well, I’ve already commented on Marina’s blog, but I’m blingy enough I’d cheerfully take one of those bottles — if only someone would give me one! Loved your espresso comment. Based on your review, I’m going to stick with my request for SB.

  • 10. Ina  |  December 15th, 2006 at 9:06 pm

    Chaya, I agree, all the FKs are wonderful. Happy Chanukkah to you!

  • 11. Ina  |  December 15th, 2006 at 9:07 pm

    Leo, I’m not a huge fan of the bottles either. To me the juice matters more.

  • 12. Ina  |  December 15th, 2006 at 9:07 pm

    Newproducts, I’m glad you enjoy it! It’s a pleasure to see your comments. :)

  • 13. Ina  |  December 15th, 2006 at 9:08 pm

    Elle, do retry the Bakouche one. Mafia life is not for you.

  • 14. Ina  |  December 15th, 2006 at 9:09 pm

    Patty, really? None of them?

  • 15. Ina  |  December 15th, 2006 at 9:10 pm

    Marina, but of course! I’m glad we have some differences. 😉

  • 16. Ina  |  December 15th, 2006 at 9:11 pm

    Tom, I sort of have to agree with you. If I buy perfume, I’m paying for the juice, not the bottle. I adore #3 and would definitely buy the scent had the bottle not been so pricey.

  • 17. Ina  |  December 15th, 2006 at 9:12 pm

    Robin, it’s a good thing! Sometimes. :)

  • 18. Ina  |  December 15th, 2006 at 9:12 pm

    March, I’d gladly take #3 as a present but, like you, I need a sugar daddy.

  • 19. Marina  |  December 15th, 2006 at 10:37 pm

    Ina, you are welcome to share the oil tycoon that L and I are going to find. I am sure that a) he’d have enough $$$ to keep three ladies happy and b) will think that the more the merrier 😉

  • 20. Ina  |  December 15th, 2006 at 10:46 pm

    Marina, I think I’m not OK with sharing. I want one all to myself. 😉

  • 21. Aromascope » Best o&hellip  |  December 29th, 2006 at 2:02 am

    […] #3 by Parfums MDCI – mysterious and alluring animalic floral. […]

  • 22. Aromascope » Indult&hellip  |  January 8th, 2007 at 1:02 am

    […] Isvaraya (a fantasy of India, means “divine”) is based around patchouli, jasmine, and Indian plum trees. The scent is my favorite of the line for its complex character and fulfilling on the promise of exclusivity. The patchouli here is soaked in caramelized jasmine, cardamom, and a perhaps a hint of milky sandalwood. Isvaraya reminds me of another Kurkdjian’s creation, MDCI #3, perhaps a bit watered down and with less presence. Exclusivity rank – 9 out of 10. […]

  • 23. Aromascope » Parfum&hellip  |  February 20th, 2007 at 1:57 pm

    […] The wonderful Parfums MDCI have now acquired names! Here they are: […]

  • 24. Aromascope » Lady V&hellip  |  March 19th, 2007 at 11:58 pm

    […] Lady Vengeance is hardly an appropriate epithet for Shakespeare’s Juliet, yet that’s exactly the name of a perfume by the new French line Juliette Has A Gun, a creative project of Romano Ricci, the great-grandson of Nina Ricci. It seems to be trendy these days to deviate from the conventional and come up with new visions of perfumery. The examples range from the regal Parfums MDCI to the downright scandalous Etat Libre d’Orange. Juliette Has A Gun falls somewhere in between, I suppose. It makes no hefty claims, has a decent dose of originality, and some Gothic mischief. There’re currently two scents in the line, and I’ve only had a chance to smell Lady Vengeance (a sensual rose) which instantly fascinated me. Miss Charming (a playful rose) sounds quite promising as well. How can they not, ladies and gentlemen, when both are created by none other than Monsieur Francis Kurkdjian! […]

  • 25. Parfums MDCI - Ambre Topk&hellip  |  January 20th, 2008 at 10:59 am

    […] Aromascope Perfume Smelling Things The Beauty Alchemist […]

  • 26. Parfums MDCI&hellip  |  August 20th, 2012 at 2:40 am

    […] reading Marina’s review and Ina’s review of MDCI perfumes, we were so dismayed when we thought these would be so exclusive and so expensive, […]




December 2006
« Nov   Jan »

Most Recent Posts