I am used to making naturally favoured mono-thematic honey by adding some spices. Cardamom pods, rosemary needles, juniper berries, cinnamon barks, ginger slices, lemon peels, vanilla pods, anise stars, and so on, and then letting the honey and the flavours infuse for a while. That's my breakfast rotation. Unfortunately, I've never made patchouli flavoured honey and Giorgio for Men is the perfect substitute for it, even if I can't eat it for breakfast! If you've never smelled it, this fantastic EDT has the same vibes as Arrogance, Kouros, Rive Gauche, Yatagan, Givenchy Gentleman and the newer TL pour Lui, to name a few. Giorgio for Men belongs to that small circle of old school perfumes, from barbershop, rich in opulent, enigmatic, deep accords. It builds around dirty notes of carnation, patchouli, and oakmoss, blended with some floral, spicy, and woody arrangements to create an oriental family, fougère, and chypre. I was only in my early teens when this was launched, but I remember everyone wearing this stuff. Eventually, I bought myself a bottle, and I fell in love, too. I never ever was expecting that this fragrance can be so wonderful, mysterious and complicated. It sat right next to my bottles of Grey Flannel and YSL Pour Homme. So, what does Giorgio for Men smell like? Read on if you want to find out. But first I want to say two things about packaging. The box reminds me of the men's costumes in vogue in the past centuries, with yellow and white stripes. Instead, the bottle is something exceptional, with its flask shape, the creative stripe pattern, glass similar to the precious crystal shabby chic bottles used for bourbon, on par with Renè Lalique 1960s Nina Ricci Signoricci men's cologne bottles in clear glass, metal screw caps.
Returning to the perfume, I am wearing it, and it feels darker than the blackest, more substantial than most extreme versions of any cologne for men that I can think of. Giorgio for Men is a woody, balsamic, earthy, and powdery cologne that reveals itself with a sharp burst of sour aldehyde at the beginning ain't like the feminine pair with hairspray vibe from aldehyde and tuberose blend. Yet, it practically hides a bitter force of patchouli. It is very sparkling, dark, and slightly dusty, but mostly sore and dry with patchouli and musk. The presence of patchouli is evident and makes this fragrance a bit like Gentleman by Givenchy. However, patchouli is more subdued in Giorgio, revealing a sweetness that Gentleman does not have. I get little sweetness out of it. And that's it for me. It smells very butch and earthy, and I loved it. The opening is shocking and overwhelming, even in its current subdued formula. Once the aldehydes tone down, a sour orange appears. Let me say that Giorgio can be very deceiving when you first spray it on.
After its raucous green opening comes to the deep, powerful, rich heart that beats loud and hard for hours. It borders the exotic with woody sandalwood and cedar combining with spiced cinnamon and dirty patchouli to host a beautiful floral dance of warm carnation, iris root and rose dew. Carnation, sandalwood, honey, iris and rose are taboo in today's men's market, but here they triumph as if there were no tomorrow. I get the dustiness from the violet leaves and the sweet spiciness from the cinnamon bark. The more it approaches the dry down, the more the rose shines.
The base is a pure magnetic attraction as the goodness of balmy benzoin, amber, and oakmoss layers in irresistible honey and vanilla, topped with tonka bean and tied with musk. A rich, filler silage fires the imagination as it lingers and intertwines. The oakmoss is still very pronounced, giving a traditional fougère that cannot be forgotten. I can smell more shades in it, especially softness of honey, sandalwood and vanilla. The sweetness is prominent but not created by vanilla sugar; it is very natural and probably given by ambergris. I never, ever expected that this fragrance could be so wonderful, mysterious and complicated. I like it from start to finish. The warm woods mixed with the sweet spices. It's also a bit animalic, and anyway, civet isn't listed as an ingredient, it's definitely there. Giorgio is not demanding or pushy; it is welcoming and deeply warm.
I have a beard, a moustache, and an uppercut hairstyle. I don't talk too much between people. I am a man who raises his head with silent self-confidence, and this perfume fits my style perfectly, giving an interesting contrast to my nature. In a nutshell, it has a very green, mossy feel to it, with some nice citrus top notes and a very prominent vanilla and musk base. This truly is a fragrance that you need to be patient with, because it really evolves, starting off with solid citrus, carnation and vanilla.
Interestingly, the vanilla seems to fade rather quickly, giving way to a slightly dirty oakmoss note, which lasts for several hours. The vanilla seems to return during the dry down, which is subtly sweet. Giorgio is friendly and adorable, from its first glimmer until the last sigh, but you need to know him well. It may take some time. This fragrance is not for mice. It's for a self-confident old school gentleman with a big heart. In my opinion, Giorgio is better suited for low temperatures. But that is very subjective. I would wear Giorgio during the humid days of the Fall and early Spring seasons.
This review bases upon a 120ml (4 fl. oz) bottle I own since August 2018.