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The S.T. Dupont D-Light

Michael Moretti
From the Print Edition:
Emeril Lagasse, Sept/Oct 2005

The D-Light keeps it so much on the inside that at first, you may not recognize it as a lighter nor identify S.T Dupont as the maker. But streamlined instruments designed to fit in with the fast-moving lifestyle of technologically sophisticated customers are the wave of the future for this classic company.

Those familiar with the flip-top lighters, which the France-based company has been crafting since 1941, may not connect them with the modernized figure of the D. The trim construction has miniaturized and adjusted the hallmark traits as well as hidden them inside a palladium sleeve. To operate, hold the piece like a remote control and slide a button on the face upward. This will release an inner brass body equipped with an ignition wheel and trigger the flow of butane. Spin the wheel with your index finger to spark a flame. The D-Light sports a classic flint flame and a spring-loaded retraction button that, with a click, slides the lighter back into its original clandestine state, shutting off the flame and the gas in the process.

Its svelte traits speak to cigar-loving consumers on the fly. Of the six lighter lines that S.T. Dupont produces, the D-Light is the thinnest, measuring little more than seven millimeters, and the second lightest, trumped only by the Line D. Thus, the D-Light can be snuggly hidden in a jacket or pants pocket.

While contemporary in appearance, the D-Light models remember their roots. The trademark Dupont elegance is evident in the High Tech version, with its completely brush-steel finish, and the Icon Lacquer (pictured), which couples a new logo with the company's signature Chinese lacquer. The modish newcomers in the Hide-and-Seek versions are more boisterous. The slide on the aptly named Orange lighter reveals loud orange color. The even more audacious Love reveals the words "I would love to see you" on one side and "again/again/again..." on the other. Perhaps that is the company's nod to clinging to classic ideals even while hewing to a modern style.

Suggested retail is $600 for the High Tech and $725 for each of the others. Call 800-341-7003 or visit www.st-dupont.com.

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