“As for the natural cause it is the wood itself that smell animalic or barnyard, for the case is Indian oud wood it has leathery smell not sharp but detectable and at anytime you will knew the difference between it’s Indonesian counter part namely the Kalimantan, in which they are more on the floral side. This is cause by they are different species ( although some consider A. Agalocha is the synomym to A. Malaccensis) and living in different area and terrain also different climate.”
Hello back again with agarwoodindonesia. Today is a very exciting day for agarwoodindonesia, because a friend from US had come to visit our studio and we talked so much in many subjects especially oud oil related.
It is quite late and almost midnight here in Yogyakarta, but I have something in mind that I would like to share.
It is about the variety of the scent of oud oil. We had discuss in the previous post about what made oud oil unique, now we will dive you more into the world of oud oil especially Indonesian oud oil. This article was based on very old article that I have at the old website but this article is a on the comprehensive side, so let’s begin.
What cause the variety ?
Variety of smell are created either by natural cause or process cause.
As for the natural cause it is the wood itself that smell animalic or barnyard, for the case is Indian oud wood it has leathery smell not sharp but detectable and at anytime you will knew the difference between it’s Indonesian counter part namely the Kalimantan, in which they are more on the floral side. This is cause by they are different species ( although some consider A. Agalocha is the synomym to A. Malaccensis) and living in different area and terrain also different climate.
The process cause is caused by processing the wood into the oil itself. And this is is the most important part after the raw material. I know that are 2 most common way of oil making, the first is most common in India and Indochina also is Malaysia which is hydro distillation and the second common in Indonesia and some part of Malaysia is water and steam distillation. Why the process matter ? If you look into Indian or Cambodian oud they have one thing in common ” Fecal” to public nose which doesn’t understand oud. This is caused by soaking, soaking is meant for softening the wood thus gaining the more oil. That is their basic idea and had being done for centuries that way.
What make it problematic is many distillers out there always use the same old tech regardless the origin of the woods and it’s character. So I heard Kalimantan being hydro and soaked…and others using Indian tech to every kind of wood, which make the oud percepted as “fecal ” to most of the public, if it wasn’t fecal it wasn’t oud… well I am sorry to say this opinion is not 100% true, since when you say make it as water and steam distillation the result will be like bottom of the sea to the sky.
We distiller should treat agarwood or oud not just as commodity but as a life form that should and must be treated with respect. It is the perfume of kings of the gulf so treated like it was the king, don’t rush it and follow it’s traits, certain wood need certain treatment and they cannot be treated indifferent and careless moreover treated the same.
I will give you a hint dear readers as what I know the continent that is inline with Sumatra usually will goes unique if you soak them and give it quite nice yield “but not all”. Soaking is usually 2-3 weeks even more, and after soaking there is process of settling and ripping of the oil where the molecules stabilize when the smell mature. Usually more then few months. So I get myself away from such tiring process, I like water and steam more.
The smell of mature soaked hydro usually percepted as “rancid” or “narcotic” like you found in Cambodia, Thai or other Indochina oil. I personally dislike such smell and I also dislike the process, because it really time and cost consuming.
I think that is all I can say for today, good evening Indonesia time and have good time.