Kemenyan: The Smell of Burning Oud Chips

Kemenyan is Agar Aura’s most recent offering of a Borneo Oud oil. When I first smelled Kemenyan, my impression was that it was a Borneo version of Ensar’s Crassna Cha. There is a bitter tea-green note with an aura of sweetness that is at the heart of Crassna Cha, and I encountered a very similar green note in Kemenyan when I first smelled it. But really, the green note in Kemenyan is a side note to what is really happening in the body of this oil.

The bottom line with Kemenyan is this: It smells just like burning Oud chips! I’m serious. When I first encountered that unforgettable smell in this oil, I had to question myself and keep smelling. But it was undeniable. This oil has that much sought-after sweet indescribable woodiness that have addicts buying high quality Oud wood and electric burners. It is not even that it has a sweet woodiness–it bears an uncanny similarity that verges on being a perfect duplication of the scent of burning Oud chips.

For that reason, it’s easy to conclude that Kemenyan is a steam-distillation, and I have no doubt that its low temperature steam distillation is what gives it such a pure and clear quality. This Borneo has a surprising depth for a steam-distillation. It is not nearly as horizontal as most steam distillations tend to be. There is a real depth and variety of notes that are clear, not lost in a kind of “mustiness”. Its sharpness and clarity is almost Kinam-like. With age, I predict that the Kinam note in Kemenyan will fully come to life.

I can’t get enough of the scent. Put high quality chips on your burner. Let it warm up a bit. Put your nose over your burner and breathe it in. If you put that fragrance into a 3g bottle of oil, then you have Kemenyan.

Don’t miss out on this unique Borneo. Of all the oils I’ve smelled, this Oud oil most closely resembles the smell of burning Oud chips. It reminds me of the Minorien Fu-In Aloeswood sticks that I love to burn. It has that same light-sweetness. A while back, I noticed what a great pair those Minorien sticks were to a Borneo oil. Here we have a realization of that pair. Incense lovers, you can’t miss out on Kemenyan!

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