If you were fortunate enough to sample Al Ruba’ie and you believed it couldn’t possibly get any better – prepare to be amazed.
From the Arabic meaning ‘Quadrant’ or ‘Quartet’ Al Ruba’ie is an olfactory work of art composed with Oudhs from Vietnam, Laos, Malaysia and Indonesia. To accomplish our vision of Al Ruba’ie II we tweaked this Quartet to include both Indian and Chinese Oudhs and we wove Hindi, Vietnamese, Chinese, Malaysian and Borneo Oudhs together to form a spectacular fragrance tapestry. Every single one of those regions offer an intense variation and variety when it comes to Oudh; from the powdery bitter-sweetness of the Vietnamese to the rich tobacco-like dark chocolate Hindis, the piercing green-hearted Malaysian to the ethereal Indonesian and slightly medicinal earthen honeyed Chinese. Ofcourse, we didn’t just stop there, we infused the resultant Oil with close to 5% of Ky Nam oil extracted from an assortment of Ky Nam categories and there you have it: Al Ruba’ie II your Oudh fantasies personified.
Over a period of nearly two years we had begun to collect woods for Al Ruba’ie. From every batch we sourced we reserved some for Al Ruba’ie II: Dark and resinous nuggets of Oudh sourced from India, Malaysia, Vietnam, China and Indonesia, patiently stockpiled waiting for just the right parameters to be cooked into a sublime Oil.
We first cooked the Chinese Hainan woods in the traditional Chinese medicinal-distillation setup. This was entirely to capture the intensity and richness of the oil at a quality level that is also suitable for human consumption. Furthermore, food grade 80kg stainless steel pots pipings and condensers produced an oil with the aroma of fragrant honey-like notes with strong streaks of medicinal herbs.
We then cooked the Hindi wood in the most traditional of pots. Large deghs with stainless steel piping running into large brick water tanks for cooling and the oil collecting in copper collector on the other side. Picture a dark chocolate Oil, deep with thrums of tobacco and threads of Cuban cigars.
The Indonesian woods were also cooked in stainless steel pots with glass cooling to avoid catching the rich notes and to emphasise and coax out more of the heavier Oudh notes -Golden syrup, Borneo bliss, notes of earth and jungle, ethereal but not overly heady.
The Vietnamese woods were cooked in two separate setups. The first batch in stainless steel pots, with copper condensers and glass collectors and the second in an all-glass apparatus, the two were then combined to give a full body complete spectrum Vietnamese experience.
Finally, we cooked all 4 oils: Hindi, Malaysian, Vietnamese and Borneo with the Ky nam oil in a complete glass setup on low temperature. The result was a beautiful and shimmering dark brown bordering-on-black oil – encapsulating, mesmerising, sensual, hot and intensely captivating.
Having been aged and cured in our special chambers for around 6 months it already exhibits the characteristics of much older oils. There are no sharp edges, no off notes – just pure finesse.
Al Ruba’ie II is from amongst those oils that have been embraced by the traditional perfumery where oudhs play important roles in a theatre of olfactory delight.
At first inhalation you are greeted with a wonderfully vintage, earthy floral aroma, almost as if mother nature speaks to you, then a bitter-sweet slightly dark and resinous cherry, the faintest touch of a boozy top note immediately captures your attention and clutches to your senses. The Ky Nam breezes in as a haute designer, a composer, not dominating but one with poise and the necessary demeanour for the orchestra to perform perfectly. When applying on the skin, multiple waves of Oudh variances sing in harmony: fragrant tobacco, cherry rum, ambergris rose, and the distinct powdery but sweetly resinous note of the Vietnamese, earthy woods and ripe fruits cloud around you.
The middle notes are oudh essence, faint sensations of camphor enveloped with ripe tamarind, followed by tobacco, dried florals, a brisk woodiness that is not toppy but a deeper and sensual sweet musky wood, not animalic but the powdery sweetness of seasoned veteran musk.
Al Ruba’ie II is oudh perfection, an infinite oudh journey.