Friday, January 05, 2007
Better-Know-A-Niche Perfumery: Maître Parfumeur et Gantier
The second stop on my Parisian perfume tour was Maître Parfumeur et Gantier (MPG), located conveniently next to Parfums de Nicolai at 84 Rue de Grenelle, 75007. This classical parfumerie was founded in 1989 by perfumer Jean-François Laporte. Since 1997, Jean-Paul Millet Lage has headed the company.
Based on the High French Perfumery concept of the 17th century, Maître Parfumeur et Gantier literally translates as "Master Perfumer and Glovemaker." This is in reference to the historical link between glove-making and perfumery created by the fashion for perfumed gloves in France during the 1600s. (For a terrific description of the connection between glove-making, perfumery, and Grasse, please see Grasse's Museum website).
MPG is a parfumerie using very rare and fine ingredients to create luxurious perfumes. It has a variety of women's fragrances, men's fragrances, and home fragrances. The women's collection consists of four lines: The Divine Flowers; The Light Symphonies; The Mystery Accords; and The Invitation of the Journey.
After sampling several eaux de toilette at MPG, my favorite fragrance was Freezia d'Or ("Gold Freesia"), in the Mystery Accords line. It contains freesia, tuberose, neroli, jasmine, ylang ylang, iris and sandalwood. It is an absolutely delicious, freesia-y scent lightened by the refreshing lift of neroli. I had every intention of buying a small bottle, but it was not to be.
"Why not?" you may be tempted to ask. Well, since this stop was very early in my Parisian fragrance journey, and I did not want to be overloaded with shopping bags, I blithely assumed (wrongly, as it turns out), that I would be able to pick up a bottle of Freezia d'Or at the department store near my hotel. "Au Printemps" is one of the grand old department stores in the 9th arrondissement. It contains an extensive collection of hard-to-find perfumes, including Maître Parfumeur et Gantier. However, it is only a partial line. It does not carry "Freezia d'Or." Word to the wise....
Fortunately, "Freezia d'Or" is available online at aedes and beautycafe (cost: $105/3.3 ounces ).
The sales associate at MPG, Catherine, was very charming and helpful. She asserted that if one is wearing a fragrance that is suitable to one's chemistry, that one should not be able to smell the scent on oneself after application. In other words, if you can smell your perfume after you put it on (given a dry-down period, I assume), it might not be right for you. Others, she continued, should be able to smell it, however, and be pleased by it. What are your thoughts on this?
If you'd like to see my previous review of MPG Eau de Camelia Chinois, please visit here.
Next stop: Editions de Parfums Frederic Malle