Together with Kinam (Kyara), agarwood from the Malinau region of Borneo island ranks as the most appealing of the all the agarwood varieties. And not just any agarwood from Malinau, but specifically Aquilaria Microcarpa species wood from the Mentarang district.
Connoisseurs love it. Even folks who would consider the smoke of other varieties of agarwood to just smell like a campfire love the scent emitted by Malinau wood.
It doesn’t stop at the wood either; well-distilled Malinau oud oil is arguably the most universally loved oud profile. And why wouldn’t it? With the unexpected blueberries and cinnamon, platters of juicy pears and melon flesh, orange-vanilla creamsicle and orris butter, a creamy woodiness that would make any vintage Mysore sandalwood envious… all this riding on chewy gummy oud resin… Malinau oud is a full perfume unto itself.
The hardest aromatic facets of the wood heating experience to capture in oud oils are the cinnamon and vanilla cake notes. Almost NO straight Malinau oud oil captures these two facets accurately.
So what did we do? Instead of using plain alcohol for the base, we utilized our matured cinnamon tincture (less sharp, and creamier than cinnamon essential oil) along with an even longer aged Papua island vanilla tincture. Papuan vanilla is very different from the typical varieties like Madagascar and Tahitian vanilla beans. It’s less sweet, creamier, and amazingly close to the ‘cake in the oven’ aroma you get from heating agarwood chips.
Our Malinau extrait was carefully crafted to emulate gently heated Malinau agarwood. To do so, I used 3 different references:
– our old oud oil, Royal Malinau (and it is one of the ingredients),
– an unreleased sinking-grade oud distillation,
– heating the raw material (wood) I used for distilling Royal Malinau.
Combining these three, the end result is an unbelievably accurate representation of heated ‘Super King’ grade Malinau agarwood nuggets.” —Agar Aura