I’ve distilled my share of oil, and from all I’ve smelled, I haven’t come across a scent that so truly, so exactly captures the scent of the distillery itself as Hailam Kilam.
More than the juicy air around the pots, it’s the scent of grinding fine agarwood. That’s what you smell here—the scent of oud chips the second the blade cuts through and scatters the resinous aroma all over. One whiff and it’s like you’re standing there watching the chips turn to powder, the scent of what’s to come all around you.
If I had to answer the question, “What’s the most addictive oud you’ve smelled in your career?” the oil you’ve got here would no doubt come to mind. In fact, I’d most likely be wearing it. It’s a definite daily swipe for me, if not several.
When you talk about agarwood, the story ends with kinam. If you don’t know about kinam, the journey offers many pleasant distractions en route to the scent that puts an end to your search. But once you know, everything becomes a comparison.
Except when it comes to agarwood oil.
There are many ouds cooked in many different ways, yet how many of them can you wear?
How many do you want to wear?
The pickiest person I know when it comes to oud oil is me. I can’t wear almost anything. But this oil… not only do I wear it every day—I crave it all the time. To me, Hainan is the pinnacle of agarwood, and this oil its most delectable interpretation.
The people who took Hainan oud and turned it into the droppings of the Bengal tiger with their crude fermentation have committed a travesty against this noblest of aquilarias.
Hailam Kilam is not a bottle you take out and swipe according to your mood or time of the year. This oil is the equivalent of a postgraduate degree in fine agar olfaction and showcases the quality wild sinensis you’ve been missing out on. A powdery orange zest laced with vanilla and rooibos with a medicinal note akin to Royal Kinam, but mellower and less bitter. A smell you can only capture by extracting the soul of the world’s most precious Chinese agarwood.
A good distiller will try to approximate the scent of that agarwood. But with the right hand at the helm, you can smell more than the scent of the oud wood they distilled from.
When people cry out lamenting how you ground up oud chips any sane person would sell raw, Hailam Kilam foregoes the regret as you bow your nose in gratitude for the fact that someone did distill such wood—and made something that smells even better.
If you haven’t smelled kinamic oils, there’s still hope. The door to a higher scent is still open. But once you enter into a room with Hailam Kilam…… everything else becomes a comparison.
So, there’s good reason for me to discourage you from buying a bottle. If its resinous sinensis aroma does to you what it did to me, it’s game over. But if you’re curious to smell how deep the rabbit hole goes, Hailam Kilam’s insanely addictive dry kinamic tone drags you down as deep as it goes.
I just got a vial of Hailam Kilam. It feels like I am wearing a divine mix of Vanilla and Maple syrup, this Oud is so different! I have a lot of Oud, some are funky, some are honey-like but this one... Smooth, sweet, subtle... I LOVE it!
Update, my wife just smelled it and now she is saying that she will wear it every day... Gonna have to get another one for myself! – Luc, USA
I’m also finding Hailam Kilam to be addictive. Despite its price I’m swiping it several times a day and I constantly have my wrist to my nose in full view of the public. I just don’t care if I look crazy to them. I want more! – Larry, USA
Very much reminds me of going into a traditional medicine shop in Chinatown and smelling all the deep musky, medicinal spices and roasted sesame, toasted rooibos tea over a great Kinam numbing sensation. I’ve been searching for something that pierces straight through me like the first time I wore Hainan 05 and this isn’t that but it’s deep and beautiful and unlike any other Oud I’ve ever experienced. – Geoff, USA
I just received the Hailam Kilam today. This is the nostalgic smell I’ve been looking for for years in an oil. This is it. Over the moon – Kenny, UK