As we start winding down in the last quarter of 2008, particularly as we get to the election, November and December holidays, reviews will get a bit sparser from me. Right now I’ve got a few things ready to go including my next write up of Shrinivas Sugandhalaya incenses (Aastha, Ajaro, Vishwa Shanti, Fantasy, Valley of Roses), Mentsi Khang Bhutanese (Mih), and Kunmeido Reiryo Koh, Reiryo Koh Aloeswood and Shoryu Koh. In the plans, provided I can find time (ha!), are a number of Direct Help Foundation incenses, five from Mystic Temple, Tibetan Yak, four from the Himalayan Herbal Centre, three from Stupa, two from Zongkar Choede, another five from Shrinivas, three low end Shunkodos (Chinsoku Koh, Shun Koh Sen and Houshou). And then, probably stretching into next year: lots of incenses from the venerable Shroff Channabasappa (these are really great btw), an unsual perfumed Tibetan incense (listed as Labrang on Essence, it’s actually something like Snowfield Chinese Herbal Incense from Labuleng called Zang), two incenses from Snow Land, five from Tashi Lhunpo, four Lama Chodpas from Nub Gon, eight Gyokushodos, Highland Powder, Kaqyupa Monastery’s Blue Sky, a few more clean ups from Nippon Kodo and another group of Encens du Monde sandalwoods.
A few quick notes on some of these. As I mentioned just a second ago, there’s something really fine about the Shroff C. incenses. They remind me of the scents I grew up with before a lot of the Indian majors seemed to go more synthetic or changed their recipes. Here the perfume are startlingly clear and very authentic. The Red Sandal, in particular, is really impressing, like a firey, cherry-laced sandalwood. Really fond of the Green Durbar too.
I’m quite psyched about the above mentioned Blue Sky incense, which seems to come from an Ayan Rinpoche recipe. It’s surprisingly premium for a South Indian Tibetan stick, with high quality woods, spices and an almost raisin-like central note.
I tried the Wabi Sabi Reiryo-Koh/Spikenard incense from Awaji Baikundo. I’m not quite sure what to make of it yet except it’s VERY reminiscent of Korean incenses with a tangy flavor. It is, however, unusual in a way I haven’t placed yet.
Quite liking the Snow Land Peace incense as well, which is listed on Essence in the various pages as Tibetan Peace (the box is fabulous with that almost psychedelic-like Tibetan artwork). It’s dry like the Medicine Kings but shot through with a number of unique spiced.
Over and out…