Hermèssence Ambre Narguilé 
Hermès (2004)

Average Rating:  79 User Reviews

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Hermèssence Ambre Narguilé by Hermès

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About Hermèssence Ambre Narguilé by Hermès

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Hermès
Fragrance House

 Jean-Claude Ellena

Amber, the Western expression of Eastern fragrances, has a warm, sensual, enveloping, almost carnal smell. I wanted to imbue this idea of amber with the memory of the East I love by recreating the ambiance of those lively places where tobacco – blended with the smells of fruit, honey and spices – is smoked in narguilés, or water pipes, and where swirls of smoke diffuse a sweet sense of intoxication.

Fragrance notes.

Reviews of Hermèssence Ambre Narguilé by Hermès

There are 79 reviews of Hermèssence Ambre Narguilé by Hermès.


Although the reviews here are overwhelmingly positive, I remember that Ambre Narguile sparked some controversy among the budding fragrance cognoscenti when it was first released. Which is kind of weird when you think about it, because Angel was over ten years old by that point. Then again, pearls were still being clutched over that one, so I guess our noses still hadn't fully acclimated to the notion of sweet foody notes in perfume.

Anyway, to me Ambre Narguile was always more comforting than controversial and certainly nowhere near as aggressive as Angel. While it can at first seem like a confection—all amber, stewed fruit, and apple pie spice—it also has a kind of gossamer elegance, which I put down to a lovely tobacco note, soft and almost dewy, the leaf still fresh on the stem, not so much burning away in grandpa's pipe.

I’ve had this in my collection since it first came out, and have always reserved it for fall and winter wear—it just seems so specifically OF those times of year to me, evoking a mood as cozy as a pair of kid-gloved fingers wrapped around a hot pumpkin spiced latte, the perfect accompaniment to the mellowing glow of sunlight, the waft of firewood smoke, the tang of desiccating leaves crunched underfoot.



Ambre Narguilé doesn't get the credit it deserves for jumpstarting the sweet tobacco genre. This acclaimed ode to shisha was released the year before Chergui and a good three years before Tobacco Vanille. It established a template for mingling Middle Eastern opulence with the aesthetics of Western luxury fashion.

Nobody but Ellena can play with such a rich concept and still render it transparent, with warm tobacco and spices suspended like golden vapor. It's a stunning achievement that we can only take for granted because Ellena has made this style his trademark.

There's certainly tobacco and amber in there, but there's also a lot of aromatic spice, which suggests apple pie for some people, but feels more genuinely Middle Eastern to me in texture.

Perhaps Ambre Narguilé remains somewhat overlooked because it eschews opulence for a translucent, friendly shimmer. I must confess that I find it more amiable than revelatory. Still, even now, almost two decades later, it's hard to think of a true peer for Ambre Narguilé, and that is quite an accomplishment.


In the same vein as Oajan from Parfums de Marly and 1 Million Prive to a certain extent.
It is an interesting take on the typically fall smoky tobacco amber, in that it is not dark at all. Instead, it is light fruity spicy sweet, all at the same time.

If you don't want to shell out the dosh for this, simply get ZARA Unexpected Fresh Spicy from the Tobacco Collection.


Fruity, cinnamon, amber.

Like warm apple pie...


Ambre Narguilé is a reference gourmand amber, exploring the honeyed tobacco theme. There are vague fruity notes, very expertly edited, that brighten the composition. There are light spices, mostly cinnamon. There is some reference to an apple pie, but it's important to note that Ambre Narguilé is abstract as one would expect; it doesn't literally smell like a dessert or a shisha. It is very minimally smoky, quite sweet, and there is a chic elegance about it. Definitely somewhat dressy, more smart casual than casual, and excellent in all seasons with good duration and an enjoyable sillage. Ambre Narguilé wears like a comforting shawl in winter, and warmer weather brings out the tobacco and fruity notes.

Among "amber" perfumes Ambre Narguilé is quite unique. I find some similarities in 'personality' with Ambre 114, but the latter doesn't have the overly gourmand notes in the Hermès. Ambre Narguilé has inspired several later compositions, but hasn't been bettered.

There is an exuberant optimism about this perfume, maybe because of the brightness and sweet notes. I think that makes it popular and well-liked. I appreciate more the moodier perfumes, the ones that have a bit of gloom - either apparent, or beneath the surface. I can't wear Ambre Narguilé for too many days in a row.

4/5


I love Oajan so there was a fair chance that I would love this one too. And I do.

Beautifully constructed. Apple pie, cinnamon and tobacco.

A little quiet on my skin which is why I prefer Oajan.

8.5/10

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