DI SER‘s Hikaru Daichi takes you on a trip to Japan’s mountain forests from the clean, crisp air at the peak to the green-tinged earthy forest floors below, complete with aromatic, fragrant pine cones strewn all over. The only things that remove you from the naturalism of this tableau are church-style frankincense and immensely resinous, tarry, leathery oud.
Not all fragrances with a cult following deserve their accolades. DI SER‘s Kyara does, in my opinion. It’s a superb, opulent, smoldering oud with Kyara or Kinam (Kynam) agarwood, the best, rarest, and highest grade of oud whose exorbitant cost and scarcity preclude most perfumers from using it in perfumery. It’s actually considered rather insane to do so and, yet, DI SER did. The result – in conjunction with a truly exquisite, lush, intoxicating, honeyed rose – is fantastic.
Hiram Green‘s new Arcadia is officially an aromatic lavender fougère inspired by idyllic green forest landscapes, but that is only a fraction of the story that unfolded on my skin. I found Arcadia to be a fougère-oriental hybrid whose fresh, clean, aerated green-laced lavender opening soon turned into creamy lavender ice-cream with deeply resinous, woody, incense-y, spicy, and ambered qualities for the vast majority of its lifetime. The end result strongly and consistently reminded me of Serge Lutens‘ original version of Fourreau Noir, a dark, delectable bell jar beauty that was the first and only lavender fragrance to bring this decades-long lavender-phobe to my knees. Needless to say, I was equally enthused by Arcadia.
Oud Extraordinaire is an utter delight – and I say that as one who isn’t really an Oud Head. Its gourmand opening evokes Serge Lutens‘ signature of spices, stewed or candied fruits, and ambery, honeyed sweetness (along with Christmas and Persian Sohan sweets) before the thick, rich scent transitions into the conventional oud bouquet of incense, tarry leather, charred woods, and medicinal camphor and then into a velvety, ambered fusion of both. When you add incredible longevity and a reasonable (current sale) price, Oud Extraordinaire is an oud worth considering.