The scent already caught my attention in a very positive way with my great uncle who died many years ago. Also because as a child I somehow always had the thought that good fragrances are actually more a domain of women
So at the age of ten or eleven, in 1986 or '87, we were visiting my great uncle and were just getting ready to go home, he said to me: "Wait a minute, I have something for you."
Game? Tension? Chocolate? Well, he was always very frugal with that sort of thing. And now he goes into the bathroom. What could he bring from there? His squeaky duck, perhaps?
Far from it. He held a small flat black box with the writing Drakkar Noir in his hand. With a smile on his face he opened the small box with his fingers and pulled out a small glass bottle. He pulled the lid off the vial, which had a long thin plastic strip on it, stroked me along with the strip behind my left ear, dipped it back into the vial, and repeated the whole thing behind my right ear. Then he put the lid back on, put the small bottle back in the box, closed it and put it in my hand.
That's a fine thing, just right for a fine fellow like you, he said with a mild, thoroughly honest smile in his eyes
And already the olfactory delight unfolded! And that at this low dose of maybe a tenth of a milliliter - I was baff!
I cherished this specimen, using the fragrance exclusively for larger family celebrations.
Eventually, the sample ran out. I kept the empty specimen for a while and in the meantime tried all kinds of (shaving) waters, many of which were good, but not nearly as good as Drakkar Noir.
One day I was leafing through a magazine and found advertisements for Drakkar Noir. Drakkar Noir? That name mean anything to you?
What was even nicer, there was a small card with a scent sample stuck on the advertisement.
Ripped open, nose in, and there it was again, the dragon boat. So I picked up some money and went to get a bottle of that scented bomb. There it was again, this olfactory delight, which brought me one compliment after the other and at times I could hardly save myself from inquiries about what kind of perfume I was wearing. Mind you, it was the beginning of the nineties, when Drakkar Noir was supposedly in everyone's nose, the best-selling men's EdT etc.; but nobody except my great uncle wore it, which amazes me to this day
Drakkar Noir was really suitable for every occasion and also when the better is the enemy of the good: Never chance a running system! Especially if it suits you perfectly right from the start and doesn't have to be smelled better by tens of times trying it. Over the years I have kept some fragrances through and also in my repertoire, but the permanent staff includes DN!
In the end, it was lucky for everyone involved that my great-uncle was one of the last wounded to be flown out of the Stalingrad cauldron and thus survived the Second World War in southern France, where he met a Frenchwoman who was born with a love of good scents. Otherwise I would probably never have ended up with this bombastic scent, which was so formative. Posthumously again many thanks for it
At some point, however, it must have been around 2000, this classic must have been slightly changed for the first time. At the same time, it was no longer Cosmair printed on the back of the bottle of the coveted fabric, but LLC. I still had the old one and could compare both versions directly against each other or have them compared. The spray head was changed as well, it got smaller and does not stick out as much as the old one
The juice didn't necessarily get worse, it became a bit milder and more base note-heavy or heart and base notes appear earlier (which I liked quite well), but with the exception of the leather note, which was perfectly tuned before and unfortunately is no longer there this year.
However, this reformulation was at the expense of durability! He still packs his 5-6 hours. But if you know that Drakkar Noir was about twice as strong in the original version and the sillage was a whole lot stronger, you might be a bit disappointed. Especially since two sprays were once the absolute maximum dosage, where it now needs double.
Around 2009, I suddenly found myself enjoying flacons with the inscription Cosmair, which, according to the seller, were supposed to be from current production and came close to the original in terms of fragrance and durability. An inquiry with Guy Laroche, who is now the current (!) distributor of Drakkar Noir, was never answered. Since I have been smelling good for years and had to ask this unpleasant question to other manufacturers as well, I could quickly make the observation that I never (!) received an answer. Why only, if they don't have any dirt or IFRA on them?
However, the seller from whom I bought a bottle from Cosmair times in 2009 swindled me! DN was all and I ordered from another shop. What did I get? One from LLC from 2010!!! What does that tell us? Fresh goods still only come from LLC - until today! Since all other lovers of good fragrances buy everything old and unreformulated from under your nose, the chances of getting old new goods have now dropped to zero. Opened flacons or ancient miniatures via Ebay excluded.
Now it's the year 2020 and again DN smells different than my last 2013 badge! The spray head has been changed again, now it is the old bigger one from years ago. Of course the label on the bottle has been redesigned a little bit. After several adjustments I can say with certainty that between 2000 and 2020 DN was operated on three times - more questions?
Interestingly enough, DN is now coming back to its former, full-bodied self. Not like the original from the 1980s, but closer to it than what was thrown on the market 10 years ago. They seem to have found an adequate replacement for oakmoss. Even the zero in leather that DN's friends had to put up with has given way to at least a barely audible +0.1 in leather.
Peace, joy, DN? No! Even though the overall composition is rounder in itself, the makers have now taken away any form of reach from the good boy. No matter how much reformulation has been done on him - if the bottle is empty, I will buy more after 4 weeks at the latest without DN, because I am missing something else. My current 2020 badge (100 ml) is half empty after 6 weeks of daily use, I refill it at least twice a day with at least 6 sprayers each. I never had such an immense wear and tear! As soon as it is there, it is already gone! The scent is still great, but those who don't know it until today should leave it at this status quo, it is just frustration! It's sad that I have to say this, but let's take it off the market