The company say:
Viking, a fiery men’s fragrance that bottles the fearless spirit of boundless exploration for the modern man who goes against the grain. Inspired by the incredibly crafted longships, a centerpiece of the Viking Age and one of the greatest design feats of the ninth century. A symbol of voyage and undeniable perseverance, longships were carefully designed for the skilled seaman who embodied unbridled determination to conquer. Viking marks the brand’s first major men’s scent since the introduction of the cult best-selling Aventus in 2010.
Viking fragrance notes
- Calabrian bergamot, Sicilian lemon, Pink pepper
- Pepper, Bulgarian rose, Peppermint
- Indian sandalwood, Haitian vetiver, Indian patchouli, Lavandin
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Latest Reviews of Viking
Stylistically I find this very much in the vein of fresh, aromatic, woody oriental compositions such as Heritage or Old Spice - or Creed's own Baie de Genievre or Bois du Portugal, with a bit of a modernization, especially the first hour or so. This perhaps also makes Viking a bit more versatile. In terms of scent profile it is actually very close to Villoresi's Piper Nigrum, including the dry down. Piper Nigrum is more assertive and unique, while Viking will likely appeal to those looking for something similar but "easier to wear".
A few things are worth mentioning here. Creed's retail pricing (in N. America, particularly) is out of whack, but that's a different debate. What I find admirable in Viking is that the base isn't cheap, synthetic and there aren't any obvious compromises. The dry down hangs around on skin, with the overall longevity about a good six hours or so. With so many designer and niche companies making overly synthetic scents, it's nice to come across something in this classic style that's well executed.
It reminds me sort of a combination of Guerlain Heritage with Old Spice (100% in a good way) and a pinch of metallic tinge from Chanel’s Platinum Egoiste. Very 90’ish. I must admit I like it. The more I wear it the more I like it.
Ah the wonderful house of Creed. While for most part I can ignore the house and not miss much, every once and a while when on vacation in Las Vegas I force myself to visit the Creed store to see if there is anything within the past few years I may have missed out on. This time I received the full court press sales pitch, including asking what my favorite three movies were (who cares?!?), expounding on the 4000+ year house history (oh brother), Cleopatra's Creed preferences (you knew her personally, eh?), only the finest ingredients used (sure, OK), and how Creed perfects formulation consistency by only going to the same select group of ingredient suppliers (this one almost made me cynically chuckle due to all the batch inconsistency arguments online - not that I believe any of it). Whatever, the sales experience was just as lengthy and ridiculous as the length of the Pinocchio's nose the sales person displayed after rambling through it. Sigh... Onward to the perfumes sampled. Most of what I sniffed last week had me wanting to escape the store as soon as possible, but a few of the more recent releases impressed enough for me to endure, and Viking was one, having me leave the store with a spray sample vial to try later on skin.
Viking actually grows on you over time. The perfume is a nice combination of fresh, and fiery hot spicy/woody. It isn't listed in the perfume notes, but cinnamon definitely plays a strong role in the perfume's heart, as does red chili pepper. The dull thin rose and vague natural mint used are more in subtle support to the primary spicy woody profile, giving the perfume that fresh, wearable dimension one expects from Creed. By the late dry-down the vetiver and sandalwood really take over and the result is quite pleasant. The perfume on the whole is actually appealing, but I can't help thinking that the key components driving most of its development have been done before... Oh yeah, the dulled rose infused red hots spicy/woody aspect can be found in Costes by Olivia Giacobetti released in 2004, for example. I own that one already but haven't worn it in years... I guess Viking's profile isn't as new or innovative as I hoped. The bottom line is the $495 per 100ml bottle Viking is a pleasant smelling perfume that channels key aspects of superior, far less expensive previous releases like Costes, and Padparadscha by Satellite, earning it a "good" to "very good" 3 to 3.5 stars out of 5 rating but an avoid recommendation as its superior predecessors can be had for far less (sans the sales pitch).
The aromatic fougere opening has that traditional lavender, mint, citrus fresh burst, very quickly blended into spicier elements of the mid notes. Subtle pink pepper and rose making this oriental. The dry down is beautiful as all the previous notes linger on mixed with patchouli and woods, giving is that classic masculine core. It reminds me of several famous fragrance from the 80s that very affordable, especially for the quality and i prefer them.
I find myself in nearly complete agreement with Buysblind's comments below. Viking is very good. The more time I spend with it, the more I like it and the more subtle bright spots I find in the composition.
The mint in this fragrance is exceptional. It smells green and natural, like it is fresh from a garden. I am on an extreme vintage fragrance kick at the moment, so that may explain why the base of Viking seems so great to me. Or perhaps it just really is great. The patchouli and vetiver interplay in the final phase of the scent, accented with the camphor note from the lavandin, is complex and is a neat echo of the mint and cinnamon in the early phases. Strong thumbs up for me.