The odour of agarwood is complex and pleasing, with few or no similar natural analogues. In the perfume state, the scent is mainly distinguished by a combination of “oriental-woody” and “very soft fruity-floral” notes. The incense smoke is also characterized by a “sweet-balsamic” note and “shades of vanilla and musk” and amber. As a result, agarwood and its essential oil gained great cultural and religious significance in ancient civilizations around the world, being described as a fragrant product as early as 1400 BCE in one of the world’s oldest written texts – the Sanskrit Vedas from India.
It has been used in Ayurvedic medicine for centuries.
It is known to have been consumed in ancient Vietnam since the third century CE.
Agarwood is highly revered by Muslims and is especially appreciated in the Arab regions of the Middle East.
WHAT IS OUD?
Arabic for wood, Oud technically refers to the resin produced by microbes that invade the trunks of Aquilaria trees. It is often referred to as liquid gold. Less than 2% of Aquilaria trees actually produce resin, which is why the luxe scent is so highly valued. Agarwood is said to be the most expensive timber in the world – indeed, one of the most expensive of all natural raw perfume ingredients.
HOW IS IT ORIGINATED?
Oud is an extremely rare and precious oil found in agarwood, the resinous heartwood of the Aquilaria tree from Southeast Asia. The oil itself is dark in coloration and has a complex scent, being warm and woody, yet strongly animalistic at the same time.
The resin-soaked wood or Agarwood and the oil distilled from it are known as Oud. The reason why Oud is so revered is because of its rarity. Less than 2% of wild agar trees produce it.
The resin has many names including agarwood, aloeswood, eaglewood, gaharu or Oud (In Arabic).
WHERE DOES THE BEST OUD COME FROM?
The agarwood trees are grown throughout South-East Asia, India and Bangladesh.
Many of the connoisseurs agree on the fact that the best Oud generally comes from Cambodia.