A rare hybrid of wild Karbi Anglong and Southern Chinese agarwood unites in an oil that’s loud without the barn, spicy without fermentation twang, and richly layered every bit as much as the original Mostafa.
My aim was not to capture the scent of gently heated agarwood chips, nor to amplify, auxiliarify, or even transcend the inherent scent of the wood. Although the scent is more than a clean-cut snapshot of slow-burn aloes—that wasn’t the point.
The slightest tinge of bitter orange, a true-to-sinensis deermusk zest, or its Aku Akirean ground pepper, buchu-infused rooibos and herbaciousness akin to cannabis. These add to its hojicha doused with freshly crushed cacao aroma to make it instantly primal, borderline sweet… but without a fruity tone. It means a tiny dab packs a punch, yet wear it outdoors with confidence; to prayer, elated.
Totally devoid of the acrid nuttiness characteristic of ouds of similar terroir which often sabotages their primordial pull and makes such oils way too ‘made-in-a-cinnamon-distillery’ smelling. In Oud Mostafa, the ancient factor hits you full force. No cashews – or pears – or flowers.
As you know, many people define Indian oud by its noterious fermentation notes. The problem is that prolonged fermentation is default practice to cover up the (lower) quality of the wood used—the ‘barn’ is a disguise.
The result? Folks can sell low-grade wood at high-grade prices. That's why you find expensive Indian oud that, once the fermentation twang is gone, smells like a distant echo of the full-bodied Indian oud rich in wild flowers and spices. In quality Indian oud, even when heavily fermented, the fermentation note is a mere glaze that still showcases the gourmand, rooibos body present in aged agallochan resin, distilled.
With Oud Mostafa, I want you to smell what artisanal Indian oud can smell like, with no disguise—and at what price.
My goal was not to create the most complex aroma in oud history, nor a single note fraction. Oud Mostafa isn’t about pipes and pots, soak or bespoke. It’s Dhikr. Zen. A scent to wear while sending salawat on the Beloved as a whiff sends you back millennia in a second. Standing, back in time, as we stand today. Reminisce.
Nothing quite reminds you of the sands of Madina, the reed mats beneath the stars, dates with milk, the way oud like this does.
Oud Mostafa, a true medicine, displays a three way path- I think it offers some culinary opportunities too: like Aroha Kyaku in the past, I am tempted to find out in which special dish it could contribute it's unique facet. Believe it or not, my connotations go along with the taste and scent we know from the Apiaceae (or Umbelliferae) like loveage, parsley, fennel, cumin, aneth/dill, or even the wild carrot and asa foetida- the latter a famous spice in India called "Hing". The cuir opening is only superficial- with a tiny dip on your tongue all the leather vanishes at once and gives way to a mighty combat of long forgotten archaic tastes; like the best chocolate, it is not (only) sweet, and not (only) bitter. It is very mind focusing and I think it it a mystic oil that teaches you to understand what the raven speaks and what the falcon said. Ideal for outdoor wear at very low temperatures (we have had 16° C below zero lately). A Chinese soberness paired up with polygonal Indian paraphernalia, minus wood/flowers/fruit plus seeds, roots, lime peels- another spice comes to my mind, Qasuri mehti, or fenugreek leaves. First way- culinary, second=mystic focusing, third: marked "excellent" on my wish list – Erhard, Austria
I love Indian Oud and I know I can’t go wrong with Ensar’s Hindis. This oil opens with that animalic punch that you expect of an Indian Oud, only I find it more leathery than barnyard. I could have never imagined how a potent hindi would go well with a soothing almost flowery Chinese oud, but it does! And it is not like you get those animalic notes at the beginning and then it fades and you start to notice the more subtle Chinese notes. It is true that at the beginning your nose is overwhelmed with the potent Hindi and you don’t notice much what lays underneath but then it starts to surface, amazingly, without the leather going away. Personally I find this oil very elating, it has a strong spiritual appeal. – André, Portugal
Oud Mostafa is absolutely stunning. The combination of Indian and Chinese agarwood makes for a marriage made in Heaven, an Oud that satisfies on every level. The scent is absolutely beautiful from application to dry down. The most soulful barn contrasts perfectly with a mouth-wateringly sweetness running throughout. Notes of dark chocolate, stewed fruits and exotic spices anchor themselves to the rock solid pastoral heart of this gorgeous oil. Oud Mostafa is so beautiful that if ever there was a ‘perfect’ Oud, then I am wearing it now! Thank you so much for this gift Ensar! – James, UK
Reviews of the previous edition:
It's a really vast horizon like being in middle of sea and looking for the ground but you can't see it since it's so far far away, so complex so charming, so heavenly, it has similar notes to China Sayang, I fell in Love instantly. – Khalid, Kuwait
Most deeply complex and beautiful oud I have ever smelled. Reminds me of what paradise could smell like. I'm too scared to use it again, as I wish I will never run out of this oil. – Liam, Australia
A beast from Karbi Anglong. The DNA of Chinese and Indian both present. A sauvage oil chuck full of mysterius layers. I love studying it. A unique salty/saline note marries the intense barn note. Vancouver oud guild sees some comparison with Oud Musa.
During today’s pho lunch; heavy on the pickled garlic….I suddenly found myself craving Oud Mostafa 7 out of the blue. I don’t own OM7, nor can I remember much about it, but suddenly I found myself craving it. At the conclusion of lunch, Rasoul happened to drive by with a vial of OM7. Oud-dacious serendipity! OM7 is a fantastic puzzle, as promised. Multifaceted, dynamic, traditional and classy. Absolutely loved it. An olfactory satellite image of all regions involved in this co-distillation. This has been on the acquisitions list all year, but now I’m pushing it closer to the front of the line for 2019. – Stefan, Canada
Today was my first day of filming, and I spent it thoroughly enjoying Mostafa VII on my wrists and sideburns. What a marvelously complex and dichotomous oil! Deeply rugged, yet utterly refined. Incredible power tempered by timeless wisdom and finesse. I imagine that Ensar would not name an oil Mostafa lightly. After today, it became abundantly clear why this oil deserves its place in that exalted lineage. – Kim, USA
Mostafa VII has no horizon, it is only here. He does not look away: he brings him back to his source, which is below. It is a demanding fragrance that launches the solemn challenge of being loved in the heart of all appearances. A fragrance that does not let lightly, but that calls you with strength.
I have the image of a candied cherry in black gold that opens like the caress of a chocolate My Darling. A roundness, that of a polished stone with a satin surface, on which one would see a pale and bluish reflection: that of an invisible Moon. You will not find any other light here than this reflection of the Moon, as we see in the wells. No other refuge in this perfume than the caramel consistency of an offering of smoke that flows in power. The incense of an ancient people, whose wisdom is forgotten, which embraces you with its thick silence, like a weight that sends down and like a supportive ground, in a setting of Night that brings you back to Self. A note of ashes or grilled nuts transports you to the depths of a forest that is reborn from the ravages of a fire of faith.
If the oldest oak in the world hid in his heart a sex erected and revered by the foam of the centuries, he would have this perfume. – Antonin, France
Ultra complex. Vertically and horizontally. Each time I would approach the swiped area a different facet jumped out. It is Chinese. It is Indian. It is barny. It is medicinal. It is both. Yet not on every whiff. There is a unique lotus flower note. The wood here smells long soaked and slightly fermented to my nose. Leather is there, so is fruit-laced tobacco. Touch of sour fruit. Powerful beast but so layered and nuanced. This is evidently a super oil. It is not for me but classic Hindi fans and general Chinese oil lovers will absolutely love this. This oil demands your respect. – Rasoul, Canada
It has a very powerful energy of «calming in a long breath», a breath that comes from the bottom of the body, connected to Earth and the mysterious essence of Being. Mental agitation cools down and Space comes back in all its density, in a musical and meditative silence, ideal to «make a little dream» awaken, thinking of the day, of love, of your existence, letting the important things feed the soul, and the useless things go away. – A.C., France
A warming oud. The primeval and earthy opening flash has a grounding oily feel; a kind of seedy oil, not nutty. Then, amongst other spicy notes, a faint note of white peppercorn. There is a prominent smell of pheromonal musk which is arousing. Together with notes of dried tangerine peel, the heart of this oud shares Chinese characteristics. The complex dry down is exhilarating, with the prominence of citrus zest bitterness shining against the resinous incense background. A grand oud of yesteryear. – Kenny, UK
Mostafa n’a pas d’horizon, il n’est qu’Ici. Il ne porte pas le regard au loin: il le ramène à sa source, qui est en bas.
C’est un parfum exigeant qui lance le défi solennel d’être aimé au coeur de toutes les apparences. Un parfum qui ne se laisse pas porter à la légère, mais qui vous appelle avec force.
J’ai l’image d’une cerise confite en or noir qui s’ouvre comme la caresse d’un chocolat Mon Chéri. Une rondeur, celle d’une pierre polie à la surface satinée, sur laquelle on verrait un reflet pâle et bleuté: celui d’une Lune invisible. Vous ne trouverez pas d’autre lumière ici que ce reflet de Lune, comme on en voit dans les puits. Pas d’autre refuge en ce parfum que la consistance *caramélique* d’une offrande de fumée qui s’écoule en puissance. L’encens d’un peuple ancien, à la sagesse oubliée, qui vous étreint de son silence épais, comme un poids qui fait descendre et comme un sol qui soutien, dans un écrin de Nuit qui ramène à Soi. Une note de cendre, ou de noix grillée, vous transporte au fin fond d’une forêt qui renaît des ravages d’un incendie de foi.
Si le plus vieux chêne du monde cachait en son coeur un sexe érigé et révéré par la mousse des siècles, il aurait ce parfum. – Antonin, France