Happy New Year!

Hello all, wanted to give a bit of an update here. First of all if you scroll down the page and keep your eye on the links to the left you’ll see a category called incense blogs. ORS is always supportive of those writing about incense as we believe every opinion assists the consumer. In that spirit I wanted to introduce you to a new blog: Lesley’s Incense Review. Lesley is just getting started but has already penned quite a few reviews and the enthusiasm and information is already impressive. I encourage you to support the site and of course if you’re an incense blogger or reviewer and would like to be added to our links, please contact me using the address on the About page.

I do have a couple of reviews on the horizon. One is relatively brand new company, the other is the latest batch from Mermade. I did want to bring this up though, the secret is out with Mermade and batches go really fast now to the point where I have to check on stock before I post. This of course is good news, that Mermade is thriving, but unless you’re quick you could easily miss some of the goodies. Their Forest Balsam, for example, was a major treat, one of the best incenses of 2015, but it went in and out of stock like a shot. I got to try one stick of Mermade’s marvelous Absinthe and it was gone before I could stock it. I wanted to review Xochi after purchasing it, but it had already disappeared when I went to look at the ingredients again, making me think I might have grabbed the last one. You get the picture I’m sure, so this is a heads up on the latest batch of Wild Wood which I hope won’t be gone by the time I get there. And based on early samples, the 2016 Kyphi vintage may be the best yet.

Anyway thanks to all of our readers and new subscribers. It is actually quite amazing to think that even though reviews are a bit sparser of late, the new traffic seems to be quite steady and your e-mails and notes have been heartwarming and encouraging. All the best to you all in the new year.



  1. Ivy P said,

    January 3, 2016 at 6:25 pm

    I’m really enjoying Lesley’s blog, thanks for the link. I really need to get some Mermade, too. Soooo many to take in.

  2. Terra Renee said,

    January 2, 2016 at 10:36 am

    Forest Balsam was simply beautiful. Katlyn was so wonderfully kind and patient with me and saved me two jars, which I still have. One half full, the other not opened yet. As for Absinthe, I do enjoy it, but my fiance gets more enjoyment out of it, as it’s almost overwhelmingly sweet for me, but for him, who has a weak olfactory sense, it’s great. The new batch of Dark Goddess and Wild Wood is something shockingly amazing, and the so-far unreleased Oud Kyphi is a treat, something I’ve never even imagined smelling. It’s amazing. I’m sure the new Kyphi batch is just as good, and I plan on buying some soon. If it goes out of stock beforehand, that’ll be sad, but I definitely am glad Mermade is making good sales. I’m sure poor Katlyn is super busy, though. I really want to ask if the Copal Negro is going to be for sale soon, but don’t want to bother Katlyn is she’s making new blends or setting up shipments.

    As for the other incense, finally got to try Golden Bough, love it! Dragon Tears still hold a special place in my heart as the best Dragon’s Blood blend I’ve ever had. Sweet, spicy, and filled with dragon magic! Latest Xochi, I was lucky enough to buy a jar in my last order (my fiance ordered the batch with WildWood, this was my last order). It smells great, and I just love the relaxing herbs. I also REALLY miss Icaro! I finally heated the last of mine, and I was hoping to get more. Hope Katlyn makes a sweet new batch of Icaro soon! And Fire Clearing (I think that’s the name) sticks are back, along with Bastet. Fire Clearing is so amazing, and Bastet is nice, but like Absinthe, a little too sweet for me.

    Everything from Mermade is amazing, and well worth any wait. I wish I had realized that awhile ago. Speaking of waits, I also love the incense from the Canadian incense-traditions.ca website. Their Tsurpu and Tashilunpo is amazing, and the Dhe-tsang is shocking. Smooth, herbal,and spicy. Of course I already mentioned the other incense from Dzogchen Monastery (of Lotus Ground fame), Brilliant Gem. It’s not as strong as Lotus Ground, but still, wow! It’s a mild, very smooth, purely herbal mix. Not a hint of any animal additions. Can’t wait til Mike starts reviewing Hart’s incense. It’s a bit of a wait since it comes from Canada, but VERY worth it, just like Mermade. Hart seems to sell only high-quality Tibetan incense and some Japanese incense. You’ll NEVER see things like Dhoop Factory there (even though Dhoop Factory is good). Hart also runs great sales ($21 for old-blend Holy Land? Seriously? WOW!) and has at least 5 sample packs.

    He will also make you a personal sample pack if you e-mail him, just in case you want the Medical incense sample pack, but don’t want the Holy Land samples since you’re buying a full pack. He’ll replace it with probably whatever you want. I think I chose more Nectar. Hart’s site is going to become just as famous as Essence of the Ages, I can tell. Just like Beth, his customer service and the incense he sells are both impeccable and he’s very patient and works with you so you get exactly what you want. Oh, and you get 8 sticks as free samples, and if you mention a certain problem (like my fiance can’t smell weak incense), he’ll try and find an incense that fits what you like and send that as an extra sample.

  3. Chris said,

    January 2, 2016 at 6:22 am

    Happy New Year to the ORS team!

    Thanks for providing great information and a rare and wonderful forum for incense aficionados. Big thanks also to folks like Kaitlyn at Mermade, Beth Johns at EoTA, WS Chia at Kyrazen and all the other makers and purveyors of stellar incense.

  4. Michelle B said,

    January 1, 2016 at 8:13 pm

    I always enjoy your reviews and would appreciate them even if the incense is out of stock, it helps me to decide what to buy when newer batches are in stock 🙂

  5. incenselesley said,

    January 1, 2016 at 6:53 pm

    Mike thank you so much for your kinds words and a spot on your blogroll. My blog was like a cemetery and then you made this post and I got a bunch of visitors! I’m really grateful for your support and all that you do for incense lovers.

    BTW, I finally visited Mermade Magickal Arts and all I can say is UH-OH! I thought burning loose incense was either crazy complicated or involved using an expensive heater but they have an electric incense heater for under $60 and their loose incenses all sound magnificent. Looks like I’m going to be eating my words about never using loose incense. 😡 Whoops there goes my paycheck!

  6. mermadearts said,

    January 1, 2016 at 5:17 pm

    Thanks Mike….just to let folks know, Wildwood never goes out of stock for long and we have a new big supply of Kyphi. Xochi will be returning soon.

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