Quick admin update

  • Just got a note from Mother’s who have sent me the latest six new Nag Champas in their line. And apparently there’s another six to follow next month. All excellent news. And yes, hopefully reviews early next year.
  • Am very distracted elsewhere at the moment, but those expecting e-mails or packages, note that I haven’t forgotten. 🙂
  • I won’t be able to address any fixes to the site for a while, but I haven’t forgotten these either. Carry on 🙂

Aluwwahs Last Breath-And Then Some :-)

I got quite a shock a month ago when touching base with my friend Simon at Alluwah, creator of such fine Bakhoors as Hajar and Ramlah, and more recently the much appreciated farm related Sheep and Lambs Breath. It seems that he has decided to take up farming fulltime for now, and was in the process of clearing his shelves. He did go out on a high note, after creating a creature that in name sounds as if it might devour those poor sheep and lambs, but whose nature is quite the opposite. The Black Pine Dragon arrived with a spicy smell exuding through several layers of packaging, making me fear it. However, upon heating, it became a beast more mellow than the sheep and lambs that preceded it. The spiciness from the Dragons Blood quickly mellowed into a dreamlike cloud of Black Pine, Red Cedar, Sandalwood, Indian Agarwood, and Jawee, accented by touches of Vanilla, Somali Frankincense, and Ambergris. After floating upon this mellow dragons back for what seems like a most incredible time, he belches out a super smooth, spicy sweet and lingering puff of Galbanum infused with Dragons Blood fire. While Al Misky considered this to be an extension of his Lamb/Sheep line, minus the honey, I would tend to think this would tend to have taken him in a new, and even more creative area. Also in my parcel was the last in his line of bakhoors, the bakhoor Majlis B. Much more than the traditional “splash and dash” Omani style bakhoor, this Omani styled bakhoor featured a typical base of an AB grade Indian Agarwood, soaked in a luscious mixture of Chocolate, Patchouli, and Labdanum oils. I also detected trace amounts of frankincense and Indian amber in this one, all of which serve to make it a hefty mix. This was quite nice as is, although I might have added a touch of Taif to put it over the top. All in all, two very fine creations, and hopefully Simon will tire of retirement soon.

More Tibetan Treasures

There were 3 other boxes of incense in my box from China not previously reviewed at ORS. The first is from the La Rong Wu Ming Buddhist Institute, Ganzi Prefecture, Tibetan Autonomous Region, a sprawling complex where lamas and anis go for training. The incense falls into the “smells like corn chips” category, however this one is one of the best. Although it starts with a rather harsh, peppery small, after 30 seconds or so, my mouth started droolin. The experience is somewhat like being hungry when walking into a 5 star eatery and being seated next to the kitchen. The pepper smell that seems so harsh at first becomes just the seasoning as the stick continues to burn, and you can almost hear and smell the corn tortilla cooking. This is a stick made for a warm yurt on the cold Tibetan plateau, and as such, is probably best used during the winter months in a larger room. This pale, white stick is so pliable that you can almost bend it in half, and comes 100 to a box priced at USD $21.50 , so don’t feel bad if you light another to feed your hunger! The second box, Ka Tog Bedroom Incense, also from Tibet, has an aroma unique for a Tibetan, or for that matter from any other incense. The stick is a tan-red color, with blackish red colored ash, and opens with a citrusy smell, then on to mandarin orange, then to both, at times more sweet, then tangy, then a blend of both. I promise that I eat well, but this too seemed like it belonged more on a menu, perhaps as a dessert (I have been assured that the translation of Bedroom incense is correct). This box also comes with a generous helping of sticks, 80 in this one, priced at USD $22. This one and the above are ones I’ll be adding to my “Buy” list. The same can’t be said for the 3rd box, from the Pukang Monastery in Arik Dza, Tibet. It’s a shame the contents weren’t as good as the packaging, which were two tightly tied rolls, in the traditional method, covered with a waterproof red waxed paper. Inside, however, was what could best be described as laundry detergent on a stick. No smell of traditional ingredients was evident, either before or after lighting the stick, just the synthetic smell of your favorite dollar store generic detergent. Totally disappointing, especially as this box was the highest priced of the lot, exceeding the muskless Highland and Holy Land by over $10 USD per box at $30. To the best of my knowledge, none of these brands are available in the US, even at EOTA, however, they may be available in your country.