Parfums de Nicolai Sacrebleu, Vanille Tonka and Le Temps d’Une Fete News

For the past few months I’ve been hearing rumors that Parfums de Nicolaï’s Sacrebleu, Vanille Tonka and Le Temps d’une Fête are to be discontinued. Since they happen to be some of my favorites from the collection, I decided to contact Nicolai directly to find out what’s happening.

sacrebleu

 

Although there will be some changes, the good news is that these perfumes won’t be disappearing. For instance, Le Temps d’une Fête will be available on demand. Vanille Tonka will remain in the collection. Sacrebleu Eau de Toilette will be removed from the catalog, but the plush Intense version will remain.

P.S. I’ve received several emails with people worrying that the discontinuation will take place nevertheless.  I verified the information above with Patricia de Nicolaï, the owner of Parfums de Nicolaï. For now, the plan is to keep the perfumes.

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72 Comments

  • annemariec: Thanks for the clarification. I’d heard those rumours too and had emailed the company but had no reply. I wonder what ‘available on demand’ really means – that it is not on the site but if you know about it already you can order it? Odd. Maybe that their way of selling the last of the stock before d/c?

    Sacrebleu Intense is very plush. Lovely, but maybe a tad too sweet for me. I can never quite decide. August 22, 2013 at 7:18am Reply

    • george: http://www.pnicolai.com/en/limited-diffusion/6-le-temps-d-une-fete.html

      Le temps d’une fete is still available to my eyes on the site. I think “available on demand” simply means that if you want it, you can buy it. August 22, 2013 at 7:27am Reply

      • annemariec: Yes, I’ve seen it on the site too. But I still wonder why a semantic distinction is being made between the availability of that perfume, and the others. August 22, 2013 at 7:33am Reply

        • Annikky: Yes, one becomes quite paranoid with all these bitter experiences… August 22, 2013 at 7:36am Reply

    • Victoria: It will have limited distribution, and if you want to buy some, you would have to ask for it. That’s how I understand it.

      I never liked the EDT that much (there is a slight sharp note that bothers me), but the EDP seemed intense enough. Intense version is good too, but I agree that it’s sweeter. August 22, 2013 at 9:35am Reply

      • Austenfan: I have just checked and I have two bottles of EDP. I don’t think I ever tried the EDT. But the nature of the scent seems to suit an EDP more.
        First in Fragrance sold a Sacrebleu extrait at some point. Maybe it is like the current Intense. August 22, 2013 at 5:40pm Reply

        • Victoria: I’ve never tried the extrait, which must have been really decadent. August 23, 2013 at 10:11am Reply

      • Ilia: I bought Sacrebleu in extrait some years ago and I think extrait got discontinued because I haven’t seen it since. It rivals L’Heure Bleue in tenacity and strength, very potent and thick. I didn’t think it would be gone and now I’ve only a few drops left. I guess Intense will have to do, but maybe it’s psychological, I think it smells a bit watery. I think I’ll go get a back-up of Temps d’une Fete though, I have wised up to perfume disappearances now. August 23, 2013 at 4:56am Reply

        • Victoria: Pretty much all perfumes I wore on regular basis were changed, so I kind of took a philosophical approach to reformulations. Some perfumes I just don’t bother with anymore, because post-reformulation they lost their sparkle (Miss Dior, for instance). August 23, 2013 at 9:57am Reply

  • george: The first I heard about this was when it was mentioned in the post comments the other day, and I didn’t think it rang true, and I did think to suggest that maybe someone should just contact PDN; hurrah for your sensible and saintly intercession is all I can say. August 22, 2013 at 7:20am Reply

    • Victoria: I’m glad that it was helpful! I also hoped that it wouldn’t be true, although I really wish that they would have kept SacreBleu EDP (regular, not Intense). August 22, 2013 at 9:43am Reply

    • Austenfan: I am extremely glad that I was wrong. I hate to see good scents go. August 22, 2013 at 5:41pm Reply

  • Annikky: That’s a relief, thanks for letting us know. But I wonder, how different are Sacrebleu and Sacrebleu Intense? I’ve been curious about these two for a while, but had other priorities when I visited the store in April… August 22, 2013 at 7:35am Reply

    • Victoria: Intense is sweeter, spicier. It doesn’t wear all that differently, and like the regular version, it’s a cold weather only perfume for me. I find both intense enough. August 22, 2013 at 9:44am Reply

  • Connie: Thanks for the information! I contacted them as well but didn’t receive a response. So glad my beloved LTd’UF isn’t going anywhere. August 22, 2013 at 7:42am Reply

    • Victoria: I was relieved, because I think that it’s one of Nicolai’s best. It’s so exquisite. August 22, 2013 at 9:45am Reply

      • ScentScelf: From a tiny voice in the corner…

        Has anybody here tried a recent bottle of LTd’uF versus on older bottle? They are a different experience in my nose-brain. Same notes, perhaps; different emphasis.

        I have both, and have stashed my newer bottle in the hopes that it will macerate and magically morph toward the lush oily element that the original features more prominently. This could be just my odd perception, I realize. August 22, 2013 at 11:13am Reply

        • Jillie: Hi, ScentSelf! I don’t know from personal experience, but I think it was Mals (who comments on other blogs and also has her own called Muse in Wooden Shoes) who wrote despairingly (last year?) that she felt that the latest version of Temps was very much watered down. I suspect that you will wait in vain for yours to improve with age, sadly.

          It seems that perhaps even the wonderful Patricia is not immune to IFRA decrees. And maybe ingredients are getting more expensive?

          I only know that my beloved L’Eau a la Folie has changed (not much but it is perceptible), and this only came out last year!

          I emailed PdN to ask if this was because of natural variation in batches and not the dreaded reformulation, but – like other people here – didn’t get a reply.

          So … the moral of this is that everybody should stock up before there are any more changes! August 22, 2013 at 11:34am Reply

          • ScentScelf: Yes, Mals did write about it. Thanks for reminding me, Jillie. I share…no, I *feel* her pain.

            Le Temps d’une Fete is one of my all-time favorites. My disappointment in the change was sharpened because I invested some hard earned dollars in a replacement bottle, as my original was running low. When the new big beautiful bottle arrived, I was all excited…then spritzed…what??? To recount a recent wail to some perfume friends, I told PdN **in person** how I loved it!! Shouldn’t that have put some protective charm on it? 😉 August 22, 2013 at 5:29pm Reply

            • Lavanya: You are right about the change. I bought my mom a replacement bottle and she thought it smelled ‘watered down’ August 23, 2013 at 12:41am Reply

        • george: As PDN perfumes are generally of a type- classical French- which were very much affected by the IFRA regulations introduced between 2010 and 2012 (I believe)- you may be right (see the classical Guerlains and Diors as well). I bought two bottles of New York- one for myself and one to give someone else as a present- before the recent IFRA regulations came in, and ended up using both for myself. Having worn New York a lot, and it having such an identifiable and friendly character, I know that the New York that I smelled back then isn’t the same that I smelled after what must have been an IFRA reformulation. I do also wonder if the discontinuing of the standard version of Sacrebleu has been influenced by whether PDN is satisfied by what she can do under the new regulations. I do- however- love this brand, and I know that what is reformulated can also be re-reformulated, and that as the problem of Oakmoss and certain other ingredients now restricted is an industry wide problem, that when it is solved, the resolution will most likely be industry wide, and PDN might get to close the gap between its current and past versions of any scent I feel have changed. With other perfumery houses I might feel that that re-reformulation is less likely because not all houses give the impression of the same level of care or dedication, but with regard to PDN I hold out the most hope. Plus I know that however annoying it might be not to have the exact version of a particular fragrance that I love that it must be annoying to the nth degree to a creator as dedicated a PDN. August 22, 2013 at 11:46am Reply

          • Jillie: George, I think you are right on all counts! Long may PdN continue, and hopefully in the same vein as much as possible. August 22, 2013 at 12:30pm Reply

            • Victoria: I also agree with George. Reformulations would be as tough for PdN as for other houses with a classical bent. August 22, 2013 at 2:36pm Reply

          • ScentScelf: Yes, George, IFRA had been at the back of my mind, too. Sneakily, I thought I was getting a good deal because it came from an old batch and the distributor was pretty mainstream. (Hence, they were perhaps trying to dump some old stock.)

            Sigh. August 22, 2013 at 5:31pm Reply

        • Victoria: I bought my bottle two years ago, but I haven’t compared it side by side. Given the reformulations taking place en masse, I wouldn’t be surprised if it were different. Also, it’s possible that your older bottle has aged. The oily nuance is something that shows up with time. August 22, 2013 at 2:27pm Reply

  • Austenfan: Thanks a million! I was only worried about Vanille Tonka as I only have a small bottle of it, and was worrying whether I should get a back-up bottle. And if so, which size.

    I haven’t tried the Sacrebleu Intense, I find the regular Intense enough. August 22, 2013 at 7:54am Reply

    • Victoria: Vanille Tonka is one of the few straightforward vanillas I like, and my bottle is almost empty. I was hoping to restock, but I’m glad that I can put it off for later. August 22, 2013 at 9:46am Reply

  • Aisha: Have never had the pleasure of trying these fragrances yet, so I’m glad they’ll still be around. Time to purchase some samples, I think… August 22, 2013 at 8:26am Reply

    • Victoria: You will enjoy trying them, I think. I also like Nicolai’s Rose Intense. Not quite a diva like YSL Paris (which I recall you like very much), but very pretty. August 22, 2013 at 9:47am Reply

      • Aisha: I just ordered a sample vial of the Vanille Tonka, as that one interested me the most. I will look for the Rose one next time. August 22, 2013 at 2:50pm Reply

        • Victoria: Please let me know how you like it! August 22, 2013 at 3:14pm Reply

          • Aisha: Just received my sample today. Oh my gosh, I’m in heaven! It was mostly citrusy to me when I first put it on (which disappointed me initially because I was hoping for more warmth), but then it quickly turned in to this lovely soft-spicy fragrance that hints at something powdery on me but stops short (*phew*). I see myself wearing this one in the dead of winter because of the gentle warmth it radiates. I also see myself making any excuse to leave the house on single-digit days just so I can get a whiff of the fragrance while burying my nose in my cashmere turtleneck or scarf.

            It’s absolutely lovely. *sigh* 🙂 August 30, 2013 at 3:23pm Reply

            • Victoria: You’ve created such a nice cozy scene with your description that I just had to go and put on some Vanille Tonka. 🙂 I’m very glad to hear that you liked it. Yes, wearing it on a cold winter day is wonderful. It really feels like a cashmere wrap. August 30, 2013 at 3:58pm Reply

  • Hana: Thank you for this post. I was wondering what happened to Sacrebleu as I believe it must sell well. The regular version is intense enough for me too. I emailed the company a few months ago. They said that the regular Sacrebleu is not available “at the moment”. I secretly hoped it may be available in the future again. August 22, 2013 at 8:31am Reply

    • Victoria: My pleasure, Hana! I hope that they’ll keep their other “classics” as well. August 22, 2013 at 9:54am Reply

  • OperaFan: That’s interesting about Sacrebleue – I always thought the original version was an edp. Like others I feel its intensity is more than enough for me and I’ve no need to try the intense. Maybe it’s part of a plan to simplify the collection into to distinctive styles: Intense vs Cologne.

    I must look into acquiring some VT, just to be on the safe side… August 22, 2013 at 9:14am Reply

  • rosarita: Thanks so much for finding this out, Victoria! Le Temps and especially Vanille Tonka are my two favorite Nicolai fragrances and I don’t have the funds available for back ups right now 🙂 August 22, 2013 at 9:37am Reply

    • Victoria: I also wasn’t ready to spend extra money on perfume right now, so I’m relieved too. August 22, 2013 at 10:07am Reply

  • solanace: What a relief, thank you Victoria!
    These three happen to be my favorites from the line, and I don’t own a FB of any one yet since they are not available here, and I’ve not been able to travel lately. Hence I was getting a little depressed with the news. And more than a little bitter, I must add. Now I’ll be getting 30 ml of each, before it’s too late and only the colognes are left. Since I have such a sweet tooth, the intense version of Sacrebleu should please me. (My co-workers might regret this decision of the house of Nicolai, though. :-P) August 22, 2013 at 9:47am Reply

    • Victoria: I think that you will like Intense very much. I don’t have such a big sweet tooth when it comes to perfume, but I like it still. It just needs a sprinkling of snow and a warm, soft scarf around my neck. August 22, 2013 at 10:03am Reply

  • Natalia: That’s a great news! I happen to like Le Temps d’une Fête a lot and, although I don’t have it in my collection, I’ve always thought well, some day… I think, in view of everything, that day’s arrived 🙂 August 22, 2013 at 10:45am Reply

    • Victoria: It’s one of my favorite green florals. Some perfumes in this genre can seem aloof and austere, but Le Temps d’une Fete doesn’t at all. August 22, 2013 at 2:24pm Reply

  • Lucas: I have a small decant of Vanille Tonka, it’s a great perfume for a cold winter day, it’s so embracing and wrapping around the body like a fluffy woolen scarf.

    PS. I’m back from my vacation 🙂 August 22, 2013 at 11:06am Reply

    • Victoria: Can’t agree more! It’s one of my winter favorites, along with YSL Opium (the new version) and Kenzo Jungle L’Elephante. August 22, 2013 at 2:24pm Reply

  • Ceil: I just recently got a bottle of Vanille tonka…I still have some of my original decant and there is a considerable difference. I like them both actually…but am a bit sad that when the decant is gone that’s it. It’s much richer. August 22, 2013 at 11:58am Reply

    • Victoria: I’ll compare them side by side. Unfortunately, reformulations are the unavoidable reality today. George put it really well in his reply to ScentSelf. For a line as classically French as PdN, it’s hard not to reformulate. The problem is that the fragrance industry teaches us to believe that every bottle of perfume is identical, whereas it’s more like wine–every year the changes will be perceptible. August 22, 2013 at 2:36pm Reply

      • Aisha: I love that analogy to wine! Yes, you’re right. We’ve been programmed to think every bottle of a particular perfume will be identical. There are and will be subtle (and sometimes not-so-subtle) changes. That analogy makes each bottle I have that much more special to me. Thanks. 🙂 August 22, 2013 at 2:47pm Reply

        • Victoria: If the reformulation respects the character of the original, I can live with it. Perfume is a living thing, and it continues to change and evolve even after you bring it home. I have to add that some companies do use the regulations pretext to cheapen their fragrances or because they need to cut costs. There are so many reasons why they reformulate. But the main one is because they can’t use certain materials anymore or can’t use them in the necessary quantities. August 22, 2013 at 3:13pm Reply

          • Aisha: I don’t know what happened to Lauren, but the reformulated one is awful (when compared to the original)! Talk about NOT respecting the character of the original! I don’t have a “trained nose,” but even I don’t even think it should be called Lauren. :-/ I’m so glad I kept my near-empty bottle from 1980s. There’s not much in there, but it still smells like the Lauren I remember.

            I haven’t gone back to retry Paris, but I understand that one had to be reformulated because of cost or regulation?? I still have my (pretty large) bottle from the 1990s, so I’ll test a recent one and see. I hope I’m not disappointed. August 22, 2013 at 3:52pm Reply

            • Austenfan: I think with Paris it is caused by restrictions on certain materials.
              The current EDP is imho closer to the original than the current EDT. When it first came out, I remember liking the EDT better as it was more cheerful, and Paris is such a great uplifting scent. I think I now prefer the EDP, but haven’t tried it in 2-3 years so things might be different yet again. August 22, 2013 at 5:37pm Reply

              • Aisha: Thanks, Austenfan. 🙂 It gives me some hope. I have the EDT and will look for both the current EDP and EDT. My bottle has lasted so long because I only wear it when I go out at night (which, obviously, hasn’t been very often since the mid-1990s). It’s also their 4 oz. bottle, so I think it’ll last the rest of my life at this rate. 😉 August 22, 2013 at 10:42pm Reply

            • Victoria: Please vent anytime! I tested Lauren a year or two ago, and I liked it ok, but when I smelled it recently, I found it a pale shadow of its former self. It made me sad, since it’s one of the great American fragrances.

              On Paris, I agree with Austenfan. It was reformulated due to the regulations, and since I worked for the company that made it (IFF), I’ve witnessed the changes firsthand. The EDT is just ok, but today it smells bland to me. The EDP, on the other hand, still has the glitz and glamour of Paris as it used to be. I also liked some flankers like Paris Printemps. August 23, 2013 at 10:22am Reply

          • Aisha: Thanks for letting me vent. 🙂 August 22, 2013 at 4:05pm Reply

          • CM: I jumped when I heard the rumour and got a backup bottle of LTdF and a new bottle of VT. I have about 15MLs left in my original LTdF and there is a difference, but in the end, I still like the new one. It reminds me of a “L’EAU” flanker made for hot summers and actually works well in this heat.

            Vanille-Tonka is another story. I have a sample decant from a couple years ago (if that) and fell in love with it – this one has been lingering on my “to buy” for a while. I jumped in and the new bottle seems disappointing. It’s missing the ooomphf. Last night before bed I doused my right arm with 5 or 6 sprays (dripping!) and still didn’t get the same richness I expected. August 23, 2013 at 8:20am Reply

            • Victoria: Last night I couldn’t find my older bottle of Vanille Tonka, so I wore whatever I had in a sample I ordered recently from Luckyscent. I enjoyed it, but I’ll now have to compare side by side to see what you mean. It’s too bad it has lost some of its intensity. August 23, 2013 at 9:56am Reply

  • Preska: As I have Vanille Tonka and Odalisque, two months ago (!!!) I placed my order from Bulgaria for Sacrebleu and Vanille Intense. My shipping address is changed but nobody paid any attention and shipped to my old one. I assured them I will cover the difference for sending me the order once again by courier and…..I’ still waiting….for two months now. And nobody answers my letters anymore.Having a good product is not enough to make regular customers.My bottle of Vanille Tonka is running out but after this very annoyng delivery experience I believe I can live without another bottle. August 22, 2013 at 2:10pm Reply

    • Victoria: That doesn’t sound good, Preska, and I’m sorry to hear about this bad experience. I would keep on emailing them and demand an answer with a tracking number. August 22, 2013 at 2:38pm Reply

  • behemot: I am glad Vanille Tonka stays.. August 22, 2013 at 2:34pm Reply

    • Victoria: I’m going to wear mine tonight. All of this Vanille Tonka talk has inspired me. 🙂 August 22, 2013 at 2:38pm Reply

  • Barbara: Phew! You had my heart pounding there for a moment. LOL Thanks for posting this. Vanille Tonka is a wintertime MUST for me. I feel there is no other vanilla perfume quite like it out there. It’s an elegant vanilla, perfect for grown-up-girly-girls! Without it, there would definitely be a hole in my vanilla wardrobe. August 22, 2013 at 3:53pm Reply

    • Victoria: Grown up and quirky! 🙂 August 23, 2013 at 10:17am Reply

  • annemariec: I’m dithering about upsizing my 15 ml decant of Le Temps. Undeniably it is one of the most beautiful spring fragrances ever, but I find it a little insistent after a while, like a pretty girl who smiles too much to get your attention.

    If anyone finds Sacreblue Intense a bit … well, intense … (I do), Fendi’s Theorema is a viable alternative. Theorema is still warm and spicy, but airier and less sweet. Of course, Theorema really IS discontiued . Of course. August 22, 2013 at 9:21pm Reply

    • annemariec: But can still be bought online and sampled via the decant services. August 23, 2013 at 3:23am Reply

    • Victoria: Oh, how much I loved Theorema! It’s easily one of the best spicy perfumes, and I haven’t found anything that’s similar to it. Sacrebleu is a good choice, but it feels very sweet, whereas Theorema’s sweetness was more toned down. August 23, 2013 at 10:09am Reply

  • Ruta: I hope they do nothing like discontinuing those beauties. I am very much fan of green fragrances and Le Temps d’Une Fete to me is such a beauty which I could not replace by anything. All in all, Nicolai should revive their oldies instead, they do have a lot of stunning, and very well priced smells.
    And they could do something with distribution- it is very hard to get a hold of them August 23, 2013 at 3:24am Reply

    • Victoria: And green florals that a strong green punch are few and far between. I’m not surprised it’s not a best seller, but I’m glad that it’s staying. August 23, 2013 at 10:06am Reply

  • Julia: Hi Victoria,
    I also contacted their customer service recently in panic about my supply of Le Temps. I got a slightly different answer though. They told me that it would be available for minimum another year. They put it on”limited distribution” on their webside to warn their customers well in advance. August 23, 2013 at 10:37am Reply

    • Victoria: I understand that they just meant that it will be available freely via their website for now and then on demand in the future. August 23, 2013 at 10:41am Reply

  • Mals86: I am relieved beyond measure to hear that LTdF will remain available, albeit in more limited quantities, in the future.

    I was disappointed at first when I bought my newer bottle, finding the fragrance much lighter and the balance shifted away from the basenotes. The new version struck me as being very much an Eau – whereas the original was labeled EdT, it wore much more like an EdP on my skin: 6 hours of wear from two spritzes. These days I get 4 hours from six spritzes! It still smells like itself, but there’s more of an accent on the florals than there was to begin with. I don’t mind terribly, since as I say it still retains its character to my nose, but it is really not the same. SIGH. All the same, I’d much rather have reformulated Le Temps d’une Fete than none at all.

    I had emailed PdN myself a few months ago, since a friend notified me that LTdF had disappeared from the website, but received no reply other than “we’ll reply to your query within a few days.” Thanks very much for reporting. August 27, 2013 at 9:26am Reply

    • Victoria: Thank you, Mals! I smelled them over the weekend, and like you, I didn’t find huge changes. Side by side there are differences, but I enjoyed the current version of LTdF very much and I didn’t mind the softer green note. It lasted just as well on me as LTdF from my older bottle. I saw more differences in Vanille Tonka, but again, not such drastic ones that I would give up on this vanilla favorite. All in all, I’m happy that they are around and relieved that they aren’t too different from what I knew before. August 27, 2013 at 10:55am Reply

  • Rosie: Having just ordered a bottle of L’temps D’une Fete directly from the PDN shop in Fulham, I was told that it is being discontinued, & that it’s no longer available in the shop.
    However after re reading Victorias comment about ordering on demand, I rang back & he said, yes, this is correct, & he rang France to order me a bottle. Phew!
    It’s no longer available in 30 mls, & when I asked why such a gem is being discontinued, was told that it doesn’t sell. What a crying shame! I’m so glad I’ve ordered a bottle of this beauty, it makes me so happy!, I tried it for the first time yesterday, when the sun was shining, & was hopelessly smitten,
    Sunshine in a bottle & in the sky, after weeks of miserable weather, what could be nicer?
    I never smelt the pre reformulation which is probably a good thing, as i can adore the new version on it’s own merit! February 11, 2015 at 7:30am Reply

    • Victoria: Ah! Why couldn’t he offer this option to you when you first called? I find it a little odd. But I’m glad that you could get it, though. And you’re right, it’s a sunshine in the bottle. February 11, 2015 at 11:52am Reply

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