Perfume Reviews

Reviews of Speakeasy by Frapin

Total Reviews: 14
A nice alternative in the sweet tobacco genre, Frapin Speakeasy starts off with lime and orange, which, at first, I may not have pointed out myself, but I do sense both after smelling it for a bit. As it settles down, I get a little bit of the geranium but not much of the mint or other notes. And the base slightly reminds me of amber and musk but not much else beyond that. Certainly the sweetness is not cloying here---it's not vanilla, or honey, but rather a citrus that dries down to the amber and musk.

It's a pleasant blend overall, and likely to satisfy many. It's sweet, but not too sweet. It's bright, but not overwhelmingly citrus or floral, so it still has day/night and even some hot/cold versatility.

At $195 for 100ml (on Luckyscent), though, I'd still have to nearly love it in order to seriously consider buying it, and I'm afraid the citrus and tobacco combination far more pleasant for me in something light like Banana Repubic Black Walnut than a more serious attempt like this, though I did enjoy trying it.

7 out of 10
08th March, 2016
This is both fun and sophisticated, and you don't get both qualities in the same bottle very often. As a stone devotee of gourmands-with-a-twist (especially gourmand-Chypres), this hits my personal sweet spot. Its construction is solid: a bracing top of juniper and a lovely spearmint that cleanses but doesn't overwhelm, a honeyed, smoky, and slightly oaky heart like good whiskey dregs and a little pipe tobacco for good measure. There's some leather, but it's not a beast. It swings towards coca as it dries down. I'd like that opening blast to last a little longer, but I just put it on, and I might reconsider after a couple of hours. Sillage seems fairly low at this point. We'll see.

Edit on the longevity: this scent seems to have almost hit the rewind button, and started all over again. How lovely! And the musk is really warm, sexy and throaty now. The structure is still seamless. I could wear this. A lot. Definitely worth dropping money on a bottle.
22nd January, 2016
While the hordes flock to Humaniste or flee from Frapin’s two ugly ducklings—Paradise Perdu and 1697—the one scent that perfectly distills the competing desires of the line (to be popular like Humaniste AND innovative like Paradis Perdu and 1697) sits alone at the bar, unfairly neglected. Speakeasy is far too seldom spoken of, and that’s a shame because if the Frapin goal is to summon the sexiness of a bygone era when the rituals around boozing (leather armchairs, philosophical ruminations with a wise friend, smoke) were more important than the liquor itself, in Speakeasy Frapin has achieved, finally, its métier.

David Frossard, Frapin’s creative director, claims he intended to evoke in Speakeasy Bogart and Hemingway, a bygone era of the bar not as boozer but as philosophical retreat for men and women who viewed sensory pleasure and intellectual exploration not as mutually exclusive aims. Is it possible to attain all of this in a fragrance? If you’ve tried Speakeasy on your skin, you’ll know the answer. If you haven’t, you’re missing out on a Frossard/Corticchiato classic, one of the best scents made for women and men in a very long time.
12th August, 2015
Advertisement — Reviews continue below

Just received my bottle and I love it! There in the beginning you get leather and booze followed by this cherry chapstick vibe; now the cherry chapstick vibe is not bad nor is it feminine, it brings out the leather in a weird kind of way;. This fragrance has the masculine almost smoky aroma with the fruitiness resting in the base. Great fragrance, with great longevity. Sillage and projection maybe a bit of a downer, however, still in the observation process.
24th April, 2015 (last edited: 11th May, 2015)
Smells of minty cocktails, faux leather and suede. The best part was probably the first 5 to 10 minutes when the perky waitress brought me the house special. Thereafter everything started to go hazy with whispered voices and snatches of conversation. Perhaps I should have sprayed this one on rather than sipped.
29th July, 2014
Speakeasy opens with a really pleasant accord of amber, earthy notes of patchouli and oak, edible fresh fruity notes, a chorus of flowers and Frapin's signature boozy vibe all around, almost sparkling and bubbling at very beginning, then still there but warmer and calmer, on a cozy discreet vanillin-woody base. One of the nicest openings among Frapin's line, and you can clearly recognize Corticchiato's style (big fan here) – that same Mediterranean feel with a dusty, coniferous mossy-chypre aftertaste, on a green base with nice, silky tobacco-hay-suede notes. Still, it kind of switches off all the lights pretty soon, "losing" all that clarity and soundness of the composition, becoming quickly a more undefined, generic, even a bit confused mossy-chypre delicate blend, with a liquid and subtle boozy feel. Not saying it's bad, just paler and in a way, more "washed down". A couple of hours, and even that is all gone. A promising opening and overall a nice scent, but still sometimes doesn't work for me.


21st May, 2014
If you like complex and non-linear fragrances, this is something worth checking out. Mr.Corticchiato of Parfum D'Empire's fame gives yet another confirmation of his talent by composing an interesting gem.

An extremely aromatic green lime note is paired with other citruses and booze to give birth to a sparkling opening. A mint / geranium combo which is not *that* distant from the one found in Geranium Pour Monsieur, joins the party right away reinforcing the overall exotic and summery vibe. I was ready to dismiss the fragrance as yet another citrusy summery thing when it suddenly started to change form and morphed into a bolder tonka / tobacco driven middle phase. Gone is the mint, the citruses and the summery vibe. The transition from the opening was really smooth and so nicely handled that it all felt incredibly plausible and natural. The middle sweet tobacco base lasts for quite a while and when you would expect no more evolutions, Speakeasy is still able to surprise the wearer by introducing an amber / immortelle base to provide even more extra body. Very nice.

Given the notes involved, I would have probably expected a bit more potency and tenacity but I can't honestly say the fragrance is weak either.
My only concern is that this stuff is probably a tad too sweet to my tastes but if you're fine with it, this is indeed a solid delivery by Frapin.

16th March, 2014
Really particular, cultured and manneristic fragrance from the great Corticchiato (which I appreciate really a lot for its eccentric and refined creativity). In the same league as the virile and exotic Czeck&Speak Cuba this Frapin's fragrance is not for everyone for sure. An aromatic/fruity semi-oriental concoction with a creative approach and its own almost unique olfactory message. The first Speakeasy's blast is absolutely interesting with its gorgeous and almost luxurious rum/bergamot really minty, fruity (undistinguished mellow fruits plus orange) and almost aristocratic accord. In this phase I'm more impressed by a sort of lingering type of classic (almost baroque) luxuriousness than by a real tropical feel just vaguely (really vaguely) arousing its effect especially due to a sort of waving undistinguished mellow fruitiness. The bergamot (as well the orange itself) provides indeed a really luxurious effect in its boozy expression evocative about cultured and aristocratic ambiences while the stout mint/immortelle presence provides a weird aromatic (royal) twist which is the "bridge" towards a following leather/musk/tobacco slightly powdery accord playing the role of main dry down connection. The minty vibe is durable throughout and (in its link with leather) provides a weird cool/leathery undertone which (especially in the central phase) counteracts any sort of "expected" (by a rum/tobacco chord I mean) sultry/exotic feel. The dry down recovers a bit of simil-tropical appearance cause the leather/mint vibe barely recedes and the final aroma appears indeed a sort of fruity suede/aromatic musk accord rounded by a perfumed styrax/tobacco/tonka/seasoned woods accord still a bit (but far less) aromatic and yet fruity/boozy/ambery. The final olfactory expression is refined and seasoned, a rounded "sensible" and all at once vaguely licentious type of aroma evocative about cultured ambiences, refined interiors, eccentric travellers in decadence, fine cognac, chandeliers and old books. A must try for all the studied/affected un-common concoctions addicted.
16th February, 2014 (last edited: 25th November, 2016)
rbaker Show all reviews
United Kingdom
The opening is quite unique with a mildly boozy and spicy davana, where bergamot with mint are adding a very nice twist. The drydown adds a pleasant tobacco note, and the base gets muskier without losing the davana. Towards the end styrax makes and appearance and fits in very well. This all is very well blended and original. Furthermore, on my skin the performance is excellent with very good silage and projection; the longevity is splendid at ten hours. For autumn days a scent that is not too heavy.
21st January, 2014
Very happy to haqve purchased this one

Since purchasing Frapin's 1270 some years ago, I've been a very ardent consumer of most things Frapin. Not every scent of theirs works for me, but I'm always interested in anything produced by this house and when I saw Speakeasy become available, I purchased a bottle sight unseen online.

Immediately upon application, I get a strong mint that has a gentle citrus twist. It's not the best mint I've ever experienced in a cologne, but it is quite acceptable and sets a brisk, pleasant tone of alertness and purpose, thus best applied at the start of a busy day.

On me, Speakeasy evolves and warms into a very pleasing, yet subtle, accord of leather, a rum taste, and citrus. This is the body of the scent for me, and it continues in this vein until the end. The only change for me is the gradually diminishing longevity.

This Frapin scent is different from all the others of its family for me, in that the boozy rum accord is much more subtle to me than the very ubiquitous and specific rummy taste of other members of the Frapin clan. This fragrance therefore strikes a different, more alert tone, with a pleasing, spicy-leather body. Other Frapin frags like 1270, 1697, Caravalle Epicee and Passion Boisee all have that flat-on-my-back, dopey grin of the perpetual rum-drunk feel, a saturation of rum. Speakeasy, similar to Frapin's L'Humaniste, is outside that heavy Frapin-rum scent that I love. It is fresher, lighter, yet with the spice and boozy accords, still a member of the Frapin family; it just looks like the fair-haired, fresher-faced younger brother of the boozier-flavoured Frapins.

I use this one regularly when dressing for work or for casual social affair; its never overwhelming. I will definitely replace my current bottle once it hits the end of its life.

Pros: Distinctive combinations of mint and citrus
Cons: Lower-end longevity"

15th October, 2013
drseid Show all reviews
United States
Speakeasy opens for business with a rum-laced tropical fruit punch accord and a twist of lime over an underlying soft mint. During the heart phase, powdery suede leather emerges with the powder most likely derived from the liberal use of benzoin. Mixing with the powdered leather during the dry-down are the remnants of the booze-laced fruity open, now joined late by non-animalic white musk and slightly sweet tonka bean rising from the base. Projection is minimal and longevity is average.

The official list of notes for Speakeasy is quite long and interesting, but I confess they are either well-blended or nonexistent as I could not detect most of them. For all its laundry list of notes, Speakeasy really smells like tropical rum fruit punch over powdery soft suede. It is a relatively subtle scent on the whole that unlike fragrances like the disappointing Enchanted Forest that are much more innovative but polarizing using a similar theme, Speakeasy really is more wearable and safe. Wearable it is, but uninspired about sums up my opinion of the scent. The bottom line is Speakeasy can get people to enter its doors with an average 2.5 stars out of 5 rating, but it will have a much harder time convincing folks to continue to imbibe as there is nothing "illegal or illicit" in this club.
21st January, 2013
RunSun Show all reviews
United States
These are the notes as listed : Rum extract, Indian davana, Sweet italian orange and Fizzy lime from Brazil, Cold russian mint and Egyptian geranium, Oriental leather accord, Ciste absolute, Labdanum absolute, Styrax essence, Turkish tobacco accord, Tobacco absolute, Liatrix absolute, Everlasting flower absolute, Tonka bean absolute and White musks

What do you get when you combine all those notes? Hawaiian Punch at first notice. If you do not know what Hawaiian Punch is, its a fruit punch-flavored soft drink. That is not to say that this smells cheap or synthetic, but rather that it smells very strongly of a fruit concoction. The top is very much dominated by this fruit smell and while it certainly won't be for everyone, I loved every second of it.

As it dries down, the leather and tobacco make a subtle appearance that blends very well with the remaining rum, orange, and lime. There is a nice hint of mint throughout, very faint, but it is there. While this is suppose to represent the Speakeasies that were prevalent during the Prohibition-Era, I liken this fragrance more to the wild bars of the Cuba that was frequented by many celebrities in the 50s before the revolution.

The only downside of this fragrance is the short lived longevity that seemingly plagues the Frapin line. I only averaged 3 hours when wearing this beautiful fragrance and that can be a tough pill for many to swallow when you are looking at the price per mL. Overall though, it was not enough for me to drop this fragrance to a neutral. This is quickly becoming my favorite of the Frapin line that is right next to 1270.
07th January, 2013
surge Show all reviews
United States
This one is AWESOME; it's basically a Mojito themed fragrance...I think this will be really amazing come summertime. Lime \ Rum \ overall freshness on first blast is wondeful...makes me think I'm at the bar.

06th December, 2012
Advertisement — Reviews continue below

The opening lime and rum accord is soothing and very masculine while being fresh and eye opening. From here though the lime burns out in the first hour and the tobacco blend becomes more and more prominent. This is a very finely blended tobacco fragrance that settles into a softer and softer comfort blend as you wear it. Very subtle after three hours, but still nice to smell. It whispers soft tobacco plus a hint of leather, an idea of incense, plus a memory of lime zest in the background. SPEAKEASY is blended by perfumer Marc-Antoine Corticciato who brought his magic from the Parfums d' Empire creations (Wazamba, Azemour, Ambre Russe, Cuir Ottomans etc) to the Frapin perfume lineup. Like all Frapin fragrances, along with their world class cognac brandy's, the blending here is seamless and the results are extraordinarily fine.
19th November, 2012