Reviews of Santal Noble by Maître Parfumeur et Gantier

Too many sandalwood candles, incense sticks, FOs & EOs, car fresheners, frags, soaps, etc., are flowery messes to me. SN is NOT one of these.

So few come off mainly as subtle, a little nutty, a little creamy, a little musky in a sunkissed, skintight way... with supporting spice or other notes providing just that, a supporting role. SN IS one of these. Definitely unisex. A favorite, along with Profvmvm Santalum. I have not smelled newer formulations.
17th November 2017
Even though they only have one note in common, for some reason Santal Noble reminds me of Cadavre Exquis, except Santal Noble is a much less ‘in your face' fragrance. Thinking I might be losing my mind, I asked my husband to smell each of them and he agreed that there is a similarity, but the Santal Noble was much more restrained. Spiced vanilla coffee and sandalwood with a big dash of patchouli, warmed up by the amber. This is good stuff.
25th October 2016

This is nice, agreeable, a little sweet, but still formal, and subtle.

It is lovely. I only see one note listed, sandalwood, and it does have an artful minimalism, but I think I also smell oak moss, and I think the sweetness comes from "amber."

Santal Noble from 1988 is the fourth entry in my late 80s / early 90s smell alikes, for reasons I wish I knew, joined by Pour Monsieur Concentree (1989), Tiffany for Men (1989), and, perhaps to a lesser extent, Heritage (1992).
25th April 2016
Rich, creamy and opulent sandalwood fragrance from MdG. I have read all the high recommendations for Santal Noble and finally obtained a sample. They're all spot on. This is an absolutely exquisite sandalwood composition, where the wood note actually rises to the surface of the scent. The sandalwood is blended with vanilla to give it a soft, yet deep and sweet fragrance. I get hints of nutmeg, incense and perhaps another island spice, but the essence is still urban and refined. It's a masculine scent, although it might be worn by a woman with confidence as well. It's a bit light on sillage, but longevity was good. An excellent fragrance and absolutely bottle worthy. Definite Thumbs Up
30th November 2015
An opulent and very satisfying sandalwood fragrance, Santal Noble is another great Maître Parfumeur and Gantier accomplishment. Together with Ambre Précieux and Route du Vétiver, it makes up something like a “Great Trio” in Jean Laporte's original 1988 lineup, those three remaining to this day the crown jewels of this house. Santal Noble is all about sandalwood, highlighting the rough and woody aspects of the note over its more conventionally accentuated creamy or balsamic sides. During its development, the sandalwood finds itself elegantly backed up by a large assortment of supporting notes like amber, spices, and incense, as well as a distinctive touch of coffee, making this an impressive and truly gratifying woody oriental. Like most other fragrances in MPG's “Parfums du Levant” series, Santal Noble makes an audacious statement: it is baroque, grand, even monumental, yet, amazingly, it is also very easy to wear and never gets heavy or cloying. Well executed, masterfully blended, and one of the best sandalwoods out there.
31st July 2015
This is a nice sandalwood (more woody like planks of wood than typical incense) sweetened with vanilla and an enjoyable ambergris. The opening is a bit harsh and very earthy but it softens to a nice exotic scent not unlike Timbuktu (but without the fruit). The sillage isn't great like Timbuktu but it probably would be a monster if it did project too much. Very enjoyable and recommended for sandalwood and gourmand fans. Ambergris fans will also like how it dries down and how it plays with the vetiver and oakmoss to give it an outdoors character.
22nd November 2014
Genre: Chypre

It took me a very long time to appreciate this fragrance, but now that I've come to terms with it, I consider it one of perfumery's towering masterpieces. Like many Maitre Parfumeur et Gantier scents Santal Noble has a deceptive opening. For the first few moments on the skin it smells like an oversweetened mocha drink from Starbucks. You'd assume from this opening that Santal Noble is an overbearing syrupy gourmand scent in the mold of A*Men. How wrong you'd be, too.

The chocolate falls waaaay into the background, and the coffee note blends quickly with velvety smooth sandalwood, moss, and dry patchouli into a superbly rich, dark, semi-dry accord that positively reeks of dignity. Move over Blenheim Bouquet, No. 88, and Vintage Tabarome – you've met your aristocratic match in Santal Noble. Santal Noble even has that paragon of male elegance, Patou pour Homme peeking nervously at its rear view mirror. The creamy luxury of Santal Noble's sandalwood accord makes others seem crude by comparison. It's elevating, reassuring, and empowering all at once. It's also dark and mysterious enough in its amber-tinted depths to suggest an animalic energy and barely concealed sexuality in its wearer. No “grandpa scent” this one!

Long lasting and with just the right amount of sillage, Santal Noble is a delight right through its amber, moss and yes, sandalwood drydown. While it's not something I'd wear with shorts, T-shirt, and flip-flops, it works as well for me on dates, at meetings, or in romantic moments. Along with Patou pour Homme, Santal Noble is one of the first scents I look to when I want to project quiet authority. It may not be to everybody's taste, but anyone with an interest in woody fragrances ought to give Santal Noble at least a full day's wearing at one point or another.
2nd July 2014
What a great fragrance.
It's really interesting how different the opinions on a fragrance could be!
While some people say that this a sandalwood based fragrances, to me this is an amber based fragrance supported by strong spices and noticeable amount of woods but amber is the major note here!
The opening is a sharp and resinous amber scent mixed with patchouli, spices, woods, coffee and some incense all together at the same time!
That seems a busy opening but believe me because of great quality and great balance of the notes you can smell all of them without any problem.
Amber is resinous, sweet and great.
Patchouli is earthy, alive and kicking!
There are lots of spices and woods to give this manly scent more depth.
There is some incense and coffee here to give the whole scent slightly bitter and smoky aroma.
it's simply beautiful.
In the mid the coffee, patchouli and incense notes settle down very much.
You can still smell resinous amber but it's smoother.
The woods and spices weren't strong enough for you at the opening?! OK you will get more in the dry down!
The amber in the dry down is more sweet but it's really smooth and almost creamy with great supporting of sandalwood and spices.
Projection is very good and longevity is 6-7 hours on my skin.
Great juice.
16th February 2014
"The" santal scent par excellence for me. And one of the best masculines (although much unisex) ever made. Unmistakable, uncompromising, quintessential perfection. Cozy and elegant, soft and deep. The only "weakness" you may find is that, as Turin correctly suggests in his guide, Mysore sandalwood has quite a more complex and multi-faceted smell, which you don't smell here (although it is not true that it is "unobtainable"). But you know what... who cares? None said this should have been an essay on Mysore sandalwood. This is a beautiful and timeless take on sandalwood theme and it's gorgeous just as it is.

13th February 2014
This review is for the vintage juice.
If you are looking for a creamy,rich,deep,soft and slightly sweet sandalwood,THIS IS IT.
11th February 2014
After much faffing around, I managed to get my hands on a sample. I then got another sample. And before long, I ended up with a full bottle. Usually this pattern is repeated for several weeks but I went through all these phases in a matter of a week.
As others have already said, this is a nicely composed Amber, Coffee, Oakmoss, and Sandalwood potion. The sandalwood is cleverly hidden. You won't get wiffs of it as you do in say, Villoresi's Sandalo, but it does exist and it is prominent in the extreme dry down. There is some vanilla also thrown in for good measure, which gives it a bit of sweetness. Think of a vanilla-flavoured latte, though without the milk. The amber to my nose is more or less linear throughout and it's hard to pick up on the sandalwood behind it (Maybe that's why this is 'noble' sandalwood?). They do sit together very well and work in harmony - one does not interfere with another.
In any case it's great for a winter's night out but IMHO not quite as good as Villoresi's Sandalo. Needless to say it's a great one for the wardrobe and any sandalwood freak should at least try it out.
29th January 2014
Santal Noble is anything but a simplistic fragrance since its aroma unquestionably includes further olfactory elements apart an high quality sandalwood (which does not naturally evolve towards an usual dry woodiness but morphs towards something never properly buttery but "rounded" for sure). Is this properly a sandalwood prominent fragrance? Probably not as there are at least a couple of notes incarnating an equal (or almost equal) level of relevance in the final olfactory equilibrium. The aroma starts soon boozy and coffee "veined", with a sweet amber carnal plain tone rising in a while from the base. The note of amber is protagonist on the sandalwood side for sure (and in my opinion together with a final smooth high quality mossy vetiver) and it's spicy (cinnamon?), liquorous in main perception (with a sort of seasoned woody undertone), luxurious, divinely retro and slightly decadent as usual for such of high quality raw ambers. I detect the Tam Dao powdery/resinous deja vu for sure but the Diptyque's fragrance is less properly ambery and more woody and musky/spicy/floral in my opinion. An irresistible opening (coloured with boozy sparks, languid bergamot, and probably moss) is furthermore the prelude to an almost immediate central slightly buttery amber/patchouli phase before the "resinousity" recedes in order to leave the scene to a lush vetiver/sandalwood/oakmoss royal dry down. In this phase i detect a sort of spongy (not pungent at all) coffee/burnt sugar brown effect (veined with an arcane touch of rubber) enhancing the general aromatic luxuriousness. In the dry down phase the note of vetiver is in my opinion dominant. I place this fragrance in the clan of decadent/baroque concoctions a la Habit Rouge Vintage EDT, Patchouli Noir by il Profvmo, Heritage, Ambre Precieux and stuffs like this. Good longevity and moderate projection.
26th December 2013
One of the best SandalwoodsFrom a vintage sample:Whilst there is a touch of spice initially, from beginning to the end this is sandalwood, rich, deep and intensive wonderful pure sandalwood. Much richer that the it's brighter cousins like Tam Dao or Santal Imperial. And it lasts. And lasts on me. Good silage and projection for the first four hours and then closer to my skin. Overall longevity an incredible nine hours on me. A sandal classic and a masterpiece of pure sandalwood. One of MPG's star performers. Yum yum.
16th July 2013

I had high hopes with this one, but whether it's me or the formulation, I'm underwhelmed.

Where as good-quality sandalwood oil lasts and lasts, the creamy sandalwood top here fades rather abruptly, morphing into a labdanum-meets-patchouli oriental that smells of its era ( think Jovan Sex Appeal For Men ) but is rather underpowered compared to its peers. Niche is overflowing with quality takes on those two notes, so I won't be running out to get Santal Noble any time soon...

5th December 2012
Well, I'm on board, I think this is pretty fantastic. I finished my little sample vial today and I am pretty sure I'm going to need more.

I like a lot of woods and spices, especially in cooler weather, so this was kind of a no-brainer for me, although they don't always work as I want them to.

I don't really get the 'challenging' aspect that others are writing about. For me this is very easy and comfortable, a little on the formal side, and probably will be worn more often in cooler weather as I mentioned. Although it is warm and rich, I also think it has an light/airy quality that I really enjoy. The wood part is a little dry but there's a little sweetness too.....I don't know. I just know it smells good and I want a big bottle for the fall/winter.
21st September 2012
Of course I like it - it's Santal Noble!

I think this is one of those rare perfumes that smells perfectly nice, if a little simple, to people who are new to non-mainstream scents. As another reviewer said here, it basically smells like fancy expensive sawdust (and that's a compliment, not a complaint).

But, Santal Noble is especially rewarding to the noses with a little more practice. It's got that bitter galbanum/bergamot chypre top, the hints of smoke, that dusty oak, the amber undertones, the hints of rich butter, that toasted hazelnut smell, and that impeccable dark green vetiver/patch/moss chypre base, and lots more. Every sniff rewards you with a little bit of interest playing alongside the sawdust if you work to pick it out.

One of the rare perfumes that just gets better and more interesting the more you know.
19th August 2012
First impression: Not actually a sandalwood-prominent fragrance, at least not in the same family as, say, Tam Dao. Actually far more complex and interesting. The sandalwood isn't really front-and-center for the first hour or so, but does eventually unfold in a very pleasant way. Quite similar in overall vibe to Caron's Third Man, albeit less prim/dandified. Add chest hair and topnotes of musky spice and waxiness. A fragrance for a mature man, not so much for the young buck. Like Third Man, it hints at old-fashionedness, without being old-guy-ish.

I definitely get the amber, musk, and spices, and even the incense note, but I do NOT get the coffee reference (at least not in the way I relate to coffee).

As Alfarom said, this is a challenging scent, deep and warm, yet complex and intriguing. Mercifully, not too loud, but also not a 'skin scent'. This is not the kind of scent you want to be a radiance bomb. Part of its charm lies in its restraint.

If you liked Third Man, but find it a bit stuffy, Santal Noble is a more comfortably wearable alternative, albeit at three times the price.

Very good.
26th July 2012
It opens with a deep wood smell mixed with coffee, then you get some soft spices mixing in with the sandalwood. It smells nice and gives off that creamy sandalwood vibe.

The problem I have with it is that I seem to be anosmic to the fragrance and can hardly smell it. I can detect if I bury my nose where I sprayed it but even with five sprays I get no projection.

So its a neutral for me.
27th April 2012
I'm very impressed by the quality of this perfume. You really can smell the difference for the extra $$$ your paying. On me it stays very close to the skin but it last almost 10 hours. I find it to be very elegant and refined compared to Bel Ami of Hermes wich is more ''sporty'' I guess it is because of the citrus notes.

One word to describe Santal Noble: Opulant! Not for everyday use but perfect if your going out with a refined lady.
23rd January 2012
If you're looking for a pretty fragrance, carefully avoid Santal Noble. Instead if you're into challenging, deep and compelling scents you could be amazed and satisfied by this one.

It opens with a sweet coffee note immediately joined by sandalwood an incense. Then the sandalwood takes over showing its creamy/dry aspect. Bold and almost overwhelming for a couple of hours. If you're into sandalwood you won't be disappointed as you'll have plenty of it in this phase...Then it settles down and blends together with vetiver, incense (again) and a musky-amber for a truly fantastic drydown that's creamy, warm, quiet and very deep.

Personally I think this is one of the best sandalwood available on the market yet it's surely not a fragrance for everybody. A masterpiece.
31st May 2011
Differences in perceptions and taste constantly amaze me. I am at a loss as to how anyone could not love this scent. It is one of the finest commercial sandalwood scents available. Although some what sweetened with coffee, chocolate and spices, this is a very pure interpretation of the sandalwood note. It has the perfect balance between creamy and dry, no real rough edges to speak of, excellent longevity and very moderate sillage. It's everything and more I have ever wanted in a sandalwood scent. It is worth it's price and more. One of the finest offerings from this house indeed.
5th December 2010
I agree with Shamu1 this is an ok scent,a very little part of it reminds me of Eau Lente for some reason. Then im hit with a silly putty type smell that turns me off.I was hoping the silly putty smell would dissipate after an hour but it didnt. I was very excited to try this one but im kinda disappointed. Oh well...but i give this a neutral rating. Not the worst but not the best either.
10th September 2010
Eh.I don't see what all the hoopla is about this scent. I absolutely love sandalwood, but this is just so-so. It just smells like high-quality sawdust to me, with some kind of subtle fruit note blended in the background. I love wood smells, and I like the smell of sawdust, so this does smell pretty good to me. But that's all. It's just a pretty good scent. It smells so dry I feel like I'll catch fire if I stand too close to a heat source.I believe the sample I have is of the current formulation, so maybe everyone else is raving about the original version. It's an okay scent, but I would never pay real money for this. And yes, people, I am talking about the holy Santal Noble.MY RATING: 6/10
10th July 2010
This, simply, is a delicious fragrance – after the first five minutes. It opens with a strong alcohol note (the kind you drink, not the rubbing kind) intermingled with a scented tobacco note. Faintly, I also smell a bit of coffee. That opening was rather startling, not what I expected. But Santal Noble was only announcing its presence with those brief, jarring, discordant opening notes. Then the magic begins, almost as if the first five minutes were a wicked practical joke. SN quickly settles down into a wonderful, clean rich fragrance which anchors itself in a creamy sandalwood. Absolutely classy and definitely all it is cracked up to be. Everyone's taste is different, but if you ever have the chance to experience this monumental fragrance, do yourself the favor. It is truly world-class.
23rd March 2010