A rare hybrid of wild Karbi Anglong and Southern Chinese agarwood unites in an oil that’s loud without the barn, spicy without fermentation twang, and richly layered every bit as much as the original Mostafa.
My aim was not to capture the scent of gently heated agarwood chips, nor to amplify, auxiliarify, or even transcend the inherent scent of the wood. Although the scent is more than a clean-cut snapshot of slow-burn aloes—that wasn’t the point.
The slightest tinge of bitter orange, a true-to-sinensis deermusk zest, or its Aku Akirean ground pepper, buchu-infused rooibos and herbaciousness akin to cannabis. These add to its hojicha doused with freshly crushed cacao aroma to make it instantly primal, borderline sweet… but without a fruity tone. It means a tiny dab packs a punch, yet wear it outdoors with confidence; to prayer, elated.
Totally devoid of the acrid nuttiness characteristic of ouds of similar terroir which often sabotages their primordial pull and makes such oils way too ‘made-in-a-cinnamon-distillery’ smelling. In Oud Mostafa, the ancient factor hits you full force. No cashews – or pears – or flowers.
As you know, many people define Indian oud by its noterious fermentation notes. The problem is that prolonged fermentation is default practice to cover up the (lower) quality of the wood used—the ‘barn’ is a disguise.
The result? Folks can sell low-grade wood at high-grade prices. That’s why you find expensive Indian oud that, once the fermentation twang is gone, smells like a distant echo of the full-bodied Indian oud rich in wild flowers and spices. In quality Indian oud, even when heavily fermented, the fermentation note is a mere glaze that still showcases the gourmand, rooibos body present in aged agallochan resin, distilled.
With Oud Mostafa, I want you to smell what artisanal Indian oud can smell like, with no disguise—and at what price.
My goal was not to create the most complex aroma in oud history, nor a single note fraction. Oud Mostafa isn’t about pipes and pots, soak or bespoke. It’s Dhikr. Zen. A scent to wear while sending salawat on the Beloved as a whiff sends you back millennia in a second. Standing, back in time, as we stand today. Reminisce.
Nothing quite reminds you of the sands of Madina, the reed mats beneath the stars, dates with milk, the way oud like this does.