Mon Patchouly, part of the impressive new Ramón Monegal perfume collection from the former owner & perfumer of Spanish Myrurgia (since swallowed by Puig), straddles the line between woody oriental fragrance and oriental "gourmand", intended for people of either sex persuasion who love soft, rich, deep scents that invite you closer with a delicious Jon Hamm hum rather than proclaim their aggressive intentions with mock bravado. It's patchouli reinvented; traditional, yet new; an overdone fragrance note of the 2000s which here gains a precious, quietly exciting patina.
The association with the suave Midwestern actor is reinforced by the subtly retro "masculine cologne" hint ~with its herbal indefinable rosy touch under the musk and woods~ that Mon Patchouly exhibits, further enhanced by the rum & whiskey tonality it gains as it unfolds its dry cocoa powder opening on the skin. It's enough to induce daydreaming of more elegant times, when men were virile and women were femmes. Aside from the phenomenal lasting power of the fragrance on my wrists ~withstanding an entire extended weekend that involved 2 showers, one prolonged sea dip (!) and several hand washings, obviously~ Mon Patchouly is also distinguished by its variability according to the skin it performs on.
On my own feminine skin, this RM perfume sweetens, mollifying the intense gourmand dryness of French roast coffee dregs & cocoa of Borneo 1834 by Serge Lutens. Fans of Montale Boisée Vanille and L'Artisan Havana Vanille/Absolument Vanille might find a similar boozy, darkish, real vanilla pods note hiding; rich and resonant, full of complexity and sub-plots, sometimes the latter even slightly repelling but always compelling. On my significant other's male skin Mon Patchouly dried down more resinous ambery, though not quite the thick, beer-belly-amber we know from elsewhere; I detect a hint of raisin and smoke too which provide contrast, probably revealed by skin Ph magic. The fragrance has the right balance and artistry not to fall into the over-familiarized (Just think, how many sweet amber patchoulis can you name at gun point? This isn't one of them).
The mossier, greener, woodier elements come forth from the back like dark secrets of a life behind closed doors, trysts during lunch break and hushed phone-calls, while still retaining the cigar box elegance and connoisseur complexity. I'm absolutely sure that come autumn and winter, Mon Patchouly will be delegated on the very front of my perfume closet (alongside the more panseasonal marvel Mon Cuir of the RM line which I sport as I write and on which I will write a separate review), its snuggly warmth a comfort for hectic days when its escapist fantasy will consume my commute and daily chores. I just can't fathom how bind-blowing Ramon Monegal's Mon Patchouly will be on a mohair scarf shared between lovers...you'll have to wait for me to divulge in due time!
Bottom line: scrumptious! I'd love to get one of those beautiful inkwell bottles for myself.
Notes for Ramon Monegal Mon Patchouly: Patchouli, olibanum, oakmoss, geranium, jasmine, amber
Available at Luckyscent in eau de parfum concentration.
In the interests of full disclosure, I was sent a sample from the manufacturer.