All tokens it, I bet you’ve never had the chance the experience this.
As far as luxury sandalwood goes, this infusion isn’t just rare, but probably the only one of its kind likely to ever come your way. At 10%, you’ve got fresh Siberian musk pods infused in vintage Tongan sandalwood that marry so well together this can easily become the most precious aromatic in your entire collection. And I’m not hyping it up…
Mainstay sandalwood is nice and all, but as you know… very bland. Unless you own a vintage Mysore or oldie from Timor, you long for sandalwood oil bursting with that butter-rich depth of mature heartwood – the kind they used to distill in the 70s and 80s before the trees (and then the oils) got cleaned out.
Mysore is famed for its luscious-like-ghee yet clean-white aroma. But take a whiff of quality Tongan sandalwood and Mysore smells tanned; smells red, musky, and pale compared to the even whiter, only far less known, aroma of Tongan santal. Tongan sandalwood might be the ‘cleanest’ – minimalist if you will – sandal from all varieties. But not bland. Greenwood spiciness wrapped in white, the cinnabon sweet spicy buttery body that makes you lick your lips…… cloaked in white.
And guess what?
Its almost see-though aroma makes it the perfect candidate for an infusion.
Remember that musk is an exhalting fixative. Perfumers don’t usually mean for it to be smelled – musk simply enhances whatever you drench it in. Sandalwood’s inherent animalic tint has made it the go-to infusion exactly because the santal fragrance blossoms, literally booms once it touches musk. But this is a different story.
You might have heard how earlier generations carried dried musk pods in their pocket – as their perfume. It might sound strange, but the scent of old, dried musk pods can be wonderfully sweet and fragrant, with potent projection. With Tongan Musk you achieve the same effect, plus you’re doused in an added layer of santalum’s spicy sweet creamy white.
So, Tongan Musk is closer to a tincture than an attar. What I mean is: forget musk exalting the sandalwood. Instead, because of the clean Tongan white, the musk is the star of the show. Playing role reversal, musk dominates the opening, as rays of Tonga’s subtle spicy white aroma starts to break through the musk clouds a few minutes later.
Yet, smelled in contrast with Musc Royale, Tongan Musk is sweet and ethereal, as if smelling Thai oud compared to a Borneo. So, something did happen……… the Tongan sandalwood toned down the animalic facets of the pure musk, sweetened it, pamperer it with its white spice to transform it into one of the most intoxicating aromas you’ll even smell.
In 1980-1981 I was living in Mcleod Ganj, which was then a small Tibetan village in north-west India in the foothills of the Himalayas.
Tongan Musk brought back incredibly vivid and visceral memories of the scent of some of the old Buddhist temples there.
Aged aromatic wood, incense, musk, perhaps a hint of myrrh; tranquil, mystical, and intensely masculine.
It is, perhaps, my favorite of all of your creations.
Certainly, were it possible, I would buy it by the tola.
I suppose it is just my odd sense of smell but I've taken to adding a small drop of Indian oud (Oud Musa or Oud Yunus) to a generous swipe of Tongan Musk to produce what, for me, is essentially olfactory heaven... – David, USA