Have you wondered what would this special oud oil, distilled from $21,000 USD worth of chips smell like?
We love to give you an answer, stay with us until the end and you will know.
In mid-June 2019, we found an offer on the market for Bruneian agarwood, so our team decided to check it out.
Retail price for this Oud wood is between $3,500 to $4,000 USD per kg. Please note in Brunei, due to strict restriction and regulation; the wild agarwood price is on the higher end. The second reason is its currency: Brunei Dollar is higher than the Australian Dollar.
See it yourself, resinous brown wood (not white), excellent age of infection. Material: Wild, resinous, incense grade Agarwood from Brunei Darussalam, Temburong district, which is very limited.
We managed to secure around 6kg of this quality.
Initially, we planned to sell this Agarwood Chip, but one of business partner asked us to distil these Oud Wood.
Let's do the math, let's be conservative, be the lower end $3500 USD
$3500 x 6kg = $21,000 USD.
- "Are you going to distil all 6kg of oud?" We asked
- "Why not?" Let's see what we can come up with
- "This is insane, are you out of mind?" Some of us responded
We asked our partner the reason for his thought. He said somebody completed a similar project before, and it is our turns. So, do it!
From our experience, this would produce around 80ml of oil (+ or - 10%)
Does it mean that we are going to convert 6kg of incense-grade wood chips, retail for $21,000 USD, to approximately 80ml of oud oil?
Ohhh, what about other overhead? What about labour cost, electricity, gas and time?
Time is a big one; it will take us around 50 days of non-stop distilling. A whopping 1200 hours invested into this oil. Let's say we hired a junior for $5 per hour (that is way below minimum wage); it will cost us an extra $6000 USD in labour. This number is very conservative because we are quite confident, a fast-food worker earns way more than $5 USD per hour, he/she will make even more on Saturday, Sunday, and nightshift. Let's say we use $5 per hour to account for the labour as you may argue in South East Asia, $5 per hour is a lot of money.
Please note we have not accounted for electricity yet, which is another cost.
So to distil 80ml of this oil, it will take $27,000 USD,
1 ml will cost $337.5 USD or $506 AUD which is very reasonable for high-end Oud Oil, oil which
- takes the incense-grade wood chips to make
- takes skill to distil
- it takes over 50 days to complete
What does it smell like?
There are three main components to make a high-quality oil: Agarwood Chips, The distiller, and the equipment he used
You have seen the material.
Oops, there is some extra information for you in case you are interested, we forget to let you know that 6kg of these Brunei agarwood chips are made up of three species:
- Aquilaria Microcarpa
- Aquilaria Malaccensis
- Aquilaria Beccariana
So what? You asked. It means you get a unique complexity developed overtime.
Also, there is no funny barnyard note. The resin from these wood chips is good enough, so there is no need to soak (a process to improve yielding). It means you get an authentic smell of oud.
The distilling apparatus is custom-made out of copper which offers a distinctive smell. Some experts said it adds extra favour.
The distiller: local Malaysian distiller Ibnu Sultan who has over ten years of experience.
He knows what he is doing, and he uses "slow cook low heat" technique to achieve excellency. He set the temperature just right so it does not burn the wood but just enough for the water to vaporise.
This setting is to minimise the burning bitterness note.
Overall, strong vanillic sweet impression and a hint of spiciness. Insanely good
Is this oud for you?
For sure, this oil is not for everyone; this is not any ordinary oil. It is for serious oud collectors. If you want to give your nose a special treat, then keep reading
For this special pre-order
you will not pay $337.5 USD ($506 AUD) for 1ml
BUT ONLY $345 AUD (you save $161 AUD)
Stage 1: 6kg of chips into the grinder to pulverise the wood chips (completed)
Stage 3: Soaking (Completed)
There was no soaking, we submerged the pulverised woodchip into the water and started distilling.
Stage 4: Distilling and Curling: "Cooking in process" and it was completed on 14/10/2019
30ml was sold, and this number is counting down.