Bravo! What a performance by Al Shareef ll, transporting this city boy to Pandora, experiencing what the indigenous humanoid species, the Na'vi smell on the lush moon in the fictional universe of Avatar!
For those who have not seen the movie, the humans (non oud fans) view this concoction as mysterious, primal and terrifying. To the creatures, the electrochemical connections betweeen the flora, fauna and fungi keep the ecosystem of Pandora in perfect equilibrium. S.T. USA
What surprised me about Alshareef II was that it was a symphony of strings, from the violins to the double basses in full frequency spectrum, the very heart of an orchestra. On first whiff, it was as though a tenor ran up my nose and sang at the top of his voice “OUD!!!!!!!”. There is absolutely no pretense to this oil, it does not hide behind a bouquet of flowers, it does not sell itself as a fruit juice, the smell of this is simply Oud in a classical way.
In its olfactory profile, it treads gently on the fence of many things, with a subtle hint of ripe cheese sitting on a metal serving plate giving it an Assamese impression, bursting ripe succulent fruits giving a subtle appearance of a soaked cambodi, a lush youthfulness reminding of thai, and a dry down of silky sumatran. It teases my senses and takes me to many places, constantly re-engaging me in an alluring way.
I’m actually ready to “canonize” Alshareef II as a classical oud scent. If anyone in incense class were to ask me, what is the smell of that mythical and historical oud, I think this oil makes the cut to be shared. Definitely a timeless scent, despite being only recently distilled, the smell of this may indeed be close to what people in the middle east had been using centuries ago. Kyarazen Singapore
Al-Shareef II was a challenge to my Western sensibilities yet its complexity, depth and contrasts were sources of continuing fascination and attraction. It was crafted to particularly appeal to oud lovers in the Gulf countries, and it is easy to imagine it standing up effortlessly to desert winds and heat.
Al-Shareef II is very pungent and robust, and thumbs its nose at conventional Wesstern etiquette. It is assertive and disconcerting, and although I prefer Rakhawah and A’meen, neither of them compels my attention as Al-Shareef II does! I think this is because the oil encapsulates, at least as I imagine it, the multitude of scents, from beginning to end, that are present throughout the noble tree’s transformation from agarwood into oud. References to the tree’s climate and geography, its jungle-y, humid, rainforest and tropical environs, are mirrored in the oil’s damp and musty notes and the pungent sour, ripe cheese and metallic notes reflect the natural and mechanical processes the wood undergoes during its metamorphosis. My favorite phase is when notes of plum, powder and cinnamon embellish its unexpectedly sweet, spicy and woody drydown. This captivating interplay between forces in nature and those unleashed by man’s creativity and imagination has given birth to an oil with a widely diverse and surprisingly contrary range of notes, from fermented and feral to succulently divine. It is not, by far, a “pretty” oil, but it is certainly one of the most riveting. M.W USA
I could swear it's a Hindi if you had not told me :) . Y.B UK