Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Review: DIPTYQUE COLOGNES L'Eau de l'Eau

Tarocco might have usurped L'Eau de l'Eau as my frequent-wear favorite, but I think L'Eau de l'Eau is the more interesting as a fragrance. It's also more obviously in the eau de cologne tradition, while I suppose the 'neo' spin on that genre is due in part to the addition of potpourri spices. Not too devastatingly new, however, since those spices trace to the original 1968 L'Eau, still in production and still insanely strong.

The 2008 L'Eau de l'Eau might be said to be a 'watering' of that. A distillation of the citrus-spice-herb essence of L'Eau, which is then mercifully given a watering-down. L'Eau... americano'd? That perhaps is more fundamentally the 'neo' of it, actually.

I guess some things could be said about l'année 1968 vs. the year 2008.

As for the scent, it is a very straightforward but light rendition of its listed heavy-hitter notes. Opens with what seems like equal parts bergamot/citrus, clove, and slightly soapy orange blossom, with a little lavender to 'ground' things, and this citrus-spice-herb essence stays fairly constant for me throughout, although it does sweeten a bit on the skin. Excellent longevity.

But though eau de cologne is not perhaps the most complex of perfume genres, the essence of L'Eau de l'Eau strikes me as complex enough. It's at once citrusy, sweet, dusty, spicy, soapy, floral, herbal, tonic, soft, fresh, warm--and all of it in beautiful balance. A true 'universal' fragrance, suitable any season, any occasion. In other words, very much in the spirit of an eau de cologne. And in my opinion very deserving of a Grand Prix du Parfum (in its class).

Notes: clove, cinnamon, ginger, pink peppercorn, orange blossom, geranium, lavender, benzoin, tonka bean, patchouli.

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