Grossmith (1906)

Average Rating:  10 User Reviews

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About Shem-el-Nessim by Grossmith

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Arabic for 'smelling the breeze'

Florentine Iris, known for its rarity and expense is truly at the heart of this fragrance.  Originally created in 1906, this rich, luxurious fragrance typifies the Edwardian era with its warm floral powdery character.

Fragrance notes

  1. Top Notes

  2. Heart Notes

  3. Base Notes

Reviews of Shem-el-Nessim by Grossmith

An old fashioned floral.
I find this a bit sharp, but, with the odd powdery bouf it could be the scent of a Renoir model.
And in the base it smells of l'Heure Bleue.
May 23, 2021

Yup, this smells a lot like L'Heure Bleue. That being said, L'Heure is really difficult to pick apart, thanks largely to the powder that cloaks it. Nessim, however, isn't very powdery, so it's less mysterious. That being said, it's still a hard smell to describe.

So what does it smell like? Sort of like yeasted bread dough with hints of pie spices, with touches of clove, suede, and iris. There's vanilla in there, and honeyed beeswax and sandalwood. It's also got that old-fashioned leather from Knize Ten. But really, it all melts together into rich, honeyed dough. It's too leathery and "perfumey" to be a gourmand, but it has the sweet richness of the genre.

I'm a huge L'Heure Bleue fan, and I can't see needing a bottle of this when I have my Bleue extrait close at hand, but there's no way I can give this anything other than a thumbs up. Nicely done.
Sep 8, 2020

This is the fraternal twin to L'Heure Bleue. Evidently, the original Shem came first, along with L'Origan (if this matters). Regardless, they are all very closely related in form and style, and if you love one, you will probably be interested in taking her sisters for a waltz or two around the Edwardian ballroom, as well. The Grossmith is a slightly more airy and herbal take on L'Heure, and I find its additional geranium notes rather lovely. It is not as heavy and sweet as the Guerlain, substituting a sophisticated, almost stellar radiance for L'Heure's velvety marshmallow warmth. Roja Dove and Luca Turin both love Shem-el-Nessim (if you care), and I do, too.

A slightly more luminous and pixie-dust version of Guerlain's classic.
Sep 15, 2017

Floral-to-vanilla complexityA beautiful neroli-bergamot freshness combines with delightful geranium-jasmine floral additions in this traditional but very well blended opening. In the drydown a nice rose and ylang-ylang merge into a base of white musk, patchouli and a nice cedar-vanilla base. There is colourful development on my skin over time, with high-quality components and good silage and projection. I get about five hours of longevity. In all is classicity this is delicious, especuially on a nice spring day.
Oct 23, 2013

There’s no denying that this and L’Heure Bleue spring from the same gene pool – they both have the same melancholy sweet subtlety born of the heliotrope-sandal notes that are their foundation. This is great for reveries, introspective days when its quiet sophistication will prompt the mind to slip away to an ever-so-tempting elsewhere. One of those scents that play with time, stretching the mental experience of it to a lovely stasis. Lovely twinkly, powdery fadeout.
Jul 23, 2012

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