Diptyque L’Eau de Tarocco ~ fragrance review

Diptyque L'Eau de Tarocco cologne

Often, I think of myself as a jaded sugar daddy. My "paramours"? Perfumes of course! They kiss my neck, fondle my arms, tickle my chest, and try to rouse me from my blasé, "been-there/smelled-that" existence. (They want my money.) Sometimes, it's hard to keep my eyes open, to feign interest in their "personalities" or their juice.

For instance:

The new parfum-garçon in town approaches (European, overdressed, "exclusive", always asking me for huge sums of cash) and I think: "He's not worth it!"

I spot a middle-aged scent, "face-lifted", all traces of moss liposuctioned away, dressed like a teenager: "I feel I know you, but something has changed...something is 'different!' You've lost weight! You seem lighter!" I say.

Department store types attract me (they are often cute, "fashionable" and bubbly) but I always get their names mixed up!: "Hello, Giorgio! Oh, sorry...I mean Ralph! NO? Don't tell me! It's Calvin, correct? Perry? Tommy?"

Shockingly, over the last year I've pursued forbidden fruit, Italians, from religious orders and monasteries I've never heard of before, who try to sell me bergamot and oranges at horribly inflated prices: "Away, Padre! Even I can't afford your goods! But you look heavenly in that BEAUTIFULLY tailored habit!"

There are bright spots in my sugar daddy existence:

I enjoy perfumes of a certain age. Not only are they well seasoned in the art of 'seduction' but they are easily reached via the Internet (cheap dates to boot, available at steeply discounted rates!): Jules, Jicky, Bijan, and les messieurs Balmain and Givenchy are just a few I turn to when I crave an experienced, appreciative 'touch.'

I also believe in having fun, so I do casual hook-ups with those I meet on the street, in supermarkets, etc. (though they are cheap and a tad "simple," they provide a lot of bang for the buck). In case you're interested, these types hang out on the corner of Pacifica and Demeter.

This sugar daddy is getting very tired; each year more paramours arrive on the scene to tempt me, but I'm usually not "satisfied" with our encounters. Only occasionally do I get back as much as I give in these relationships — time and commitment, money, entertainment, originality! Rarely do I say: "I will keep you!  Here are the keys to my house, my heart! My credit card number? But of course!"

Today, in marched what appeared to be a "lightweight" French character: the fruity, but comely, Diptyque L'Eau de Tarocco. To be blunt: the foreplay was excellent, but there was no climax. We were both asleep before 20 minutes were up.

L'Eau de Tarocco Eau de Cologne, by Givaudan perfumer Olivier Pescheux, contains Tarocco oranges, cinnamon, turmeric, ginger, rose, cedar, frankincense, saffron, Serenolide and Cosmone (musks). L'Eau de Tarocco saves the best for "first": delicious aromas of orange peels, orange pulp — quite delightful. Quickly, L'Eau de Tarocco offers up glints of turmeric, ginger and slightly "medicinal" saffron. Before I knew what was happening, the fragrance became "femme" — soft and powdery, rose-y; the rose accord smelled like old fashioned lipstick one minute, then yeast rolls fresh from the oven (and glazed with rose jelly) the next.  Unfortunately, the majority of the time I spent with L'Eau de Tarocco, all I smelled was "see-through", standard-issue musk-wood-citrus. The lasting power of L'Eau de Tarocco is below average (and we sugar daddies appreciate some lasting power if you know what I mean). I will not be calling L'Eau de Tarocco for a second date, but if, unlike me, you don't have lots of light, musk-wood-citrus summer fragrances at hand, you may want to give L'Eau de Tarocco a try. Me? I'm pursuing Miller et Bertaux' a quiet morning — pert, yet doe-eyed. "HEL-LOOOOO there!"

Diptyque L'Eau de Tarocco is available in 100 ($98) and 200 ml ($135) Eau de Cologne, packaged in a splash bottle with an optional pump spray. For buying information, see the listing for Diptyque under Perfume Houses.

Note: drawing at top left by John Singer Sargent (via freeparking on flickr; some rights reserved.

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  1. Yogaprof says:

    Great review! I’ll never think of “optional pump spray” in quite the same way again!

    • boojum says:


      • Kevin says:

        Boojum: glad to hear it…save some laughter for the free ads Google might post after its software picks out some of the words in the post.

    • Kevin says:

      Yogaprof!!! HAHA!

  2. RusticDove says:

    How naughty! ;-)

    • Kevin says:

      Rusticdove…but NICE.

  3. Daisy says:

    What a great review! It made me laugh and made me feel just a little dirty—- so it’s all good. (snickering)

    I just sampled Tarocco this week–it does start out nice with a little bite of citrus zest and ginger…but all too soon went medicinal then flat, stale and well…boring. hmm, now I guess I’m pinning my hopes Dior Pondichery.

    • Kevin says:

      Daisy: I’m looking forward to that one too.

  4. crowflower says:

    Thanks for making me laugh out loud at work!

    • Kevin says:

      Crowflower: you’re welcome!

  5. miss kitty v. says:

    This is awesome! LMAO. I once told someone that I was promiscuous when it comes to perfume, and got the most shocked look. I don’t think they heard me past “promiscuous.” Or maybe they had other ideas about what I was doing with perfume. Who knows. Either way, this spoke to my heart. :) Keep up the good work.

  6. Robin R. says:

    Love it, love it, LOVE it, Special K! Thanks for the giggles. Very adroit humour — as always. :-)

    • Kevin says:

      RobinR: thank YOU…I like “Special K”..ha!

  7. Dzingnut says:

    You are a brilliant essayist Kevin! This captures so perfectly the “relationships” we have with our fragrances. Don’t ever stop writing!

    • Kevin says:

      Dzingnut: thank you…perfume relationships are always good for a laugh, aren’t they?

  8. bergere says:

    Ha! Thank you, Kevin, for making my day.

    • Kevin says:

      Bergere: you’re welcome…today I”m looking into the new MAC “honeys”!

      • boojum says:

        Heehee! Tried looking for those yesterday, didn’t see them… but had plenty of other adventures anyway. Soooo far behind.

      • RusticDove says:

        Oh, do let us know what you think of the MAC honeys!

  9. Carlos BFL 319 says:

    Oh well can’t be right about them all. Fun review though. I must have missed the Femme part. Do agree on the length of “romp”. LOL! :-)

    • Carlos BFL 319 says:

      Right meaning…how MOI thought YOU would like it. :-)

    • Kevin says:

      C: yes, a quickie indeed. Did you buy a bottle?

      • Carlos BFL 319 says:

        Who me…what…buy a bottle…UH….no! Damn I am the worst liar! HA!

        Well, on the bright side…I have to apply so heavily…and refreshed thoughout the day…I’ll use up that bottle in no time! Or maybe not.

  10. Dusan says:

    Well, I guess that sometimes a good foreplay is all one needs.

    Nah, who I am kidding!
    Thanks for the laughs, K! :-D
    P.S. Good thing is there’s no law against your kind of kerb crawling ;-)

    • Kevin says:

      Dusan! I abide by the law as best I can…plus, I’m discreet.

      • Daisy says:

        …says the man who recently admitted to a naked, top hatted banana dance….

        • Carlos BFL 319 says:

          lol @ Daisy.

        • Kevin says:

          Daisy: true…but no police reports were filed!

          • Daisy says:

            because no one wants to admit to having seen/watched it….?

          • Daisy says:

            there’s also the possibility that the neighbors are hanging around their windows waiting for a glimpse of another performance…

  11. dissed says:

    lol! lol! And yet, it’s true. I know that I’m happiest at home with my faithful Ormonde Jaynes, and yet . . .

    • Kevin says:

      Dissed: your nose WILL wander!

  12. Rictor07 says:

    This was entertaining. Thanks for helping me kill at least 30 minutes of my work day.

    • Kevin says:

      Rictor: glad to help…

  13. mikeperez23 says:

    What a giggle inducing post – thanks K.

    Fragrance monogamy is SO overrated. :)

    • Kevin says:

      Mike: it IS, isn’t it? I’m always telling the people I know who stick with one scent to PLEASE expand their selection!

  14. Dixie says:

    Kevin, your reviews do leave a lasting impression. I can’t look at an Equipage bottle without thinking of you.

    • Kevin says:

      Dixie: oh…I like being remembered by my Equipage!

      • dewey eyed says:

        Oh man. Hermes could use that for marketing….

  15. Joe says:

    Kevin: I will admit it: I love, LOVE casual, cheap hook-ups, though I still always keep my eyes open for elegant French characters, of whom I’ve “known” a few. Is that so wrong?

    I absolutely demand lasting power to hold my interest, but I’m still curious to try this one to see how the spices are handled. However, I think my citrus go-to this summer will be Dior Portofino… until something else “distracts” me.

    • Daisy says:

      you know my sample of Tarocco has your name on it, right?
      well, actually it says Diptyque on it, but you know what I mean.

    • Kevin says:

      Joe: Portofino was a pass for me…too quiet. You’re known as a meanie in the sugar daddy realm (you cut your perfumes down to size!) DEE-CANT!

      • boojum says:

        FINALLY! Someone else in my camp. I tried to love it, but it goes flat on me after about 5 minutes. If it were free and I had nothing better, I would certainly wear it…but I’d take 4711 over Portofino, sadly. Still love the bottle, though…here’s hoping the next one is fab!

        • Kevin says:

          Boojum: crossing my fingers on Pondicherry…”TEA!”

          • Musette says:

            Kevin! You made me laugh so hard I snorted! Not nice!LOL!

            so funny – and so informative. Saw you capping TEA! Have you tried Agraria Bitter Orange? You might like it. I love it, esp on hyper-hot days – just like Iced Constant Comment.


          • Kevin says:

            Musette: yes, Bitter Orange is nice.

  16. bl1ss says:

    Brilliant brilliant brilliant. (So brilliant, that I even registered so I could say that.) Still would give it/him a go..though….

    • Kevin says:

      BL1SS: Welcome and thanks. Many people fell in love with Tarocco if you read other reviews…so you may get more out of it/him than I did.

  17. Veronika says:

    I’m confused. Is Diptyque hiring people to make perfume? Do they have briefs already? I always thought they were more of s in-the-house company…

    • Kevin says:

      Veronika: think they’ve always had perfumers do their stuff.

  18. Erin says:

    Well, I must be getting old and bored because interesting foreplay is enough for me. There’s a bottle under my name at my local perfume store, just gotta get down there and pay for it. And I thought the hook-up lasted longer than many of my previous cologne dates. Perhaps this is why they say “Different strokes for different folks….” ;)

  19. krokodilgena says:

    so does this have a lokum-y rose?

    Is Miller et Bertaux’ a quiet morning similar? only without lokum-y rose?

    • Kevin says:

      Krok: Tarocco’s rose is sweet, but not candy-sweet…and it’s light.

      a quiet morning does have some rose but I like it for the tumeric…it’s vaguely like Penhaligon’s Elixir, esp. in the dry-down.

      • heydaves says:

        i received a sample of penhaligon’s elixir with a purchase from luckyscent, and its definitely grown on me quite a bit.

        a quiet morning sounds interesting. i’ll have to add it to my ever-growing list of things to smell.

  20. Ojeda says:

    This is the best post ever.

  21. Filomena says:

    Kevin, I have to “third” the motion as the best post ever. So clever and could fit in a Philip Marlowe novel. Thanks for the laughs!

    • Kevin says:

      filomena/my beauty blog: thanks!

  22. Tama says:

    I need to find a sugar daddy for real but that’s another story! :-P

    I loved this post! I was all excited at first glance at the name of the perfume because I thought maybe it was a tobaccoey one but no. Oh well. Sounds like a pass, another to keep OFF THE LIST.

    I’ll be interested to hear what you think of those MAC honeys.

    • Kevin says:

      Tama: I have high hopes for them but then again, I’ve never tried a MAC scent before.

    • AnnS says:

      Hi Tama – Well, if I am a sugar momma, then my new fav, Camaro driving fling is that darmed tootin Bulgari Black! Thanks for the thrill!!

      • Tama says:

        You are welcome! And since it is a men’s fragrance, it is fairly affordable!
        Hmm, I think that will be my SOTD – it is cool here.

  23. platinum14 says:

    Oh Kevin! Jeez…
    I swore that I would never, ever be with anyone even a day yonger than myself for fear of ever being consider to be a “sugardaddy”.
    I have always succeeded (Except for that one time one…) But now, thanks to your review…. I might have to come to grip with reality…. gasp! I am…
    Anyway… Diptyque candles yes, sometimes, but their frags have never really turned my fancy…

    • boojum says:

      You guys are making my day, here! I have yet to find a Diptyque to love, and I’ve given up trying. That bench on the sideline was getting lonely… ;)

    • Kevin says:

      platinum: I’ve loved and owned many a Diptyque: Virgilio, L’Eau Trois, Oyedo…and more…so this one disappointed. I like the weird Diptyques.

  24. fleurdelys says:

    “…the foreplay was excellent, but there was no climax. We were both asleep before 20 minutes were up”?!?!? ROFLMAO!

    Kevin, this is priceless. You’re such a good writer you manage to fit in a lot of valuable information among the humor.

    • Kevin says:

      fleurdelys: thanks! Being a sugar daddy IS humorous most of the time.

  25. Jill says:

    This was terrific! I was grinning all the way through it. Thanks … and although I was really curious about this one, I’m in no hurry now — I have plenty of musk-wood-citrus scents already.

    • Kevin says:

      Jill: yes, smell it when you come across it in the store…it’s fun just to smell the opening ‘orange’ section.

  26. cazaubon says:

    Fabulous post, I needed that laugh. I totally agree on the foreplay without climax and the overpriced European lotharios we’ve been subjected to lately. I like to stick with my old tried-and-true favorites more and more!

    • Kevin says:

      cazaubon: I’ve been restocking old faves lately too…

      • platinum14 says:

        Yeah! like my M7 and my butch Macassar

  27. sapphie says:

    That was a fun read, Kevin, and I love that drawing!

    Although I haven’t tried their candles, I’m starting to think Diptyque is a scam – lackluster scents in gorgeous packaging.

    • Kevin says:

      Sapphie: for me, the most recent offerings have been lackluster…not like the older scents. But, Diptyque is probably selling more than ever as the fragrances have become more “mainstream.”

    • cazaubon says:

      The only one I truly love is Oyedo – that strange, fluorescent fruity scent with the musty undertone.

  28. AnnS says:

    Great post as usual Kevin – very funny! I sometimes feel like a gal who’s strayin’ away from my first love (Coco), with many new and sometimes very excellent partners. But there is Coco, sitting in the corner with that look in her eyes each time I come back home……… In this whole situation, I think I need to be a polyamorous woman with multiple husbands *and* lovers!!!

    From Ab-Fab — Patsy’s crazy Mom: “Take it away, and bring me another lover!”

    • Kevin says:

      Anns: from the very start I’ve had a stable of scents…I “know no other way!”

    • Tama says:

      Polyamory is the ONLY way to go with perfume. And other things, but we won’t get into that….

  29. Rappleyea says:

    What a great job you did working the metaphor – terrific writing! Thanks – I needed that!

  30. noirepices says:

    Brilliant! My feelings exactly. Where oh where is a good frankincense note? I love it so and yet can’t think of one perfume that does it justice. Suggestions?

    • Kevin says:

      noirepices: have you tried Czech & Speake Frankincense & Myrrh?

      • noirepices says:

        Oh my goodness, I was unaware of Czech & Speake! Very exciting. Thanks for the great tip…

    • Joe says:

      Avignon? Messe de Minuit?

      • noirepices says:

        I loved Messe de Minuit in the bottle, but on me it’s a big patchouli bomb, sadly… I’ll have to sniff Avignon… thanks!

    • Blimunda says:

      Incense Extreme from Tauer Perfumes

  31. datura5750 says:

    This was such a great post, thank you Kevin!

  32. Kevin, my sweet, come to mama… What you are is a scent slut, just like me!
    I smelled the Diptyque eaux recently, but only on strips, and they have very appealing gambits… Of course, eaux aren’t meant to last much, hence the musk. Your mention of saffron and rose got me interested, but then, I’ve got L’Artisan Safran Troublant and I’m ogling IUNX L’Ether (being one of the few who can actually contemplate the purchase leisurely, since it’s only sold in Paris and that’s where I live). So I’m set up in the saffron and rose department.
    As for eaux, well, I’m a Chanel EdC girl myself. My heart belongs to daddy Polge and cousin Sheldrake!

    • Kevin says:

      CC: saffron and rose is a great combo, isn’t it? And how could one NOT be a scent slut in Paris! HA!

  33. Blimunda says:

    Nothing makes me smile like a raunchy double-entendre. This review was deilghtfully full of them!
    I have recently made a decision to stick with my reliable older men, and to stop ‘sampling around’. I am going to buy bottles of Bandit, Champaca and Muscs Koublai Kahn – maybe Incense Extreme if I harken to Andy’s siren-call from across the sea. Other than that, I am putting on my chastity belt and throwing away the key for 2010. Hmmmm……which makes me think of By Kilian and their over-priced packaging-boxes……

    • Kevin says:

      Blimunda…so excited that MKK will be exported briefly this fall.

    • Daisy says:

      oh Blimunda, you are so strong! I ‘m afraid that I am a pushover for wink and a smile from every new cutie that happens by…sigh, a perfume ho for sure.

      • norjunma1 says:

        Never a perfume ho, honey. Just aromatically adventurous. ;)

  34. RossM says:

    I’m with everyone else – what an entertaining and eerily accurate (in terms of the healthy/unhealthy relationship between me and my scents!) review.
    Slightly off the topic however, I just today ordered a sample of Dyptique Tam Dao and was wondering what to expect?

    • Kevin says:

      RossM: my bottle is years old, but expect cedar-sandalwood. I do think there’s a review here at NST of the scent by Robin.

  35. sarcon says:

    kevin, you are a true delight! thank you for this!

  36. norjunma1 says:

    Oh Kevin, you do make me laugh. If only I could love Jicky as much as you do! (Love the Sargent pick too.)

  37. Valkyrie says:

    Kevin you’re a hilarious, but am I the only one distracted by the nearly nekkid fellow who looks like jesus?

  38. heydaves says:

    fantastic article.

    love it!

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