Arabian Oud - Kalemat

thecentennial

Well-known member
Dec 26, 2010
I have to say, I'm like a kid in a sweet shop right now with Arabian Oud. I picked up a few mukhallats and a bottle of Kalemat edt last week.

Kalemat was entered (by Arabian Oud) into the regional FIFI 2010 (perfume oscars) and came out on top in the "my favorite perfume of the year".

Anyway, because of this, I bought a bottle - and I really, really like it. It's a lovely blend of sweet orientals (grape musk flower, rosemary flower, star anise) & rich woods (cashmere(?) and mahogany wood).

Beautiful opening, unisex but erring on the masculine, with a long, sweet spicy dry down.

Really good longevity on my skin (8 hrs) and moderate silage.

Highly recommend this one - certainly not cutting edge, but really well put together and wonderfully balanced.

Anyone else tried it?
 

cacio

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Basenotes Plus
Nov 5, 2010
Thanks for the suggestion. I have bought some Arabian oud oils once in a store, and I like them a lot. But I do not have access to the line, so I cannot smell.

The description at zahras perfumes says spicy floriental (incense, basil,cedarwood,vanilla), which sounds a little strange, your description is much more informative. (but what is grape musk flower?)

Also, did you find the spray well balanced? In my past experience with sprays, I had the impression that many arabian houses (masters in the oil medium) hadn't really mastered perfumes in alcohol.

cacio
 

noggs

Well-known member
Jan 20, 2007
It has been a while since I last visited Arabian Oud. I'll check out Kalemat, but like cacio I'm not generally a fan of perfume sprays from Arabian houses.

Which mukhallets did you get?
 

thecentennial

Well-known member
Dec 26, 2010
The spray was very good - it really could be a "mainstream" western release in my opinion.

Re mukhallets - I started out siraj and asala with but I'd be very happy to receive any recommendations - they're all new to me.
 

cacio

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Nov 5, 2010
Thanks. "mainstream" western doesn't sound too enticing, as most mainstream western are rather unexciting. But I'll take it to mean "Good, non-niche, western".

I own a little of Al Azerya (?or something like this), which is a good smooth oud-creamy saffron-rose combination (richer on the saffron. or perhaps it's sandalwood. I wouldn't know, I've never smelled real India sandalwood).
And also I have an oud which I believe is called Syoufi. Aged oud, it opens with some "fecal" note, then becomes very dry-woody. Also very good.

But I'm no expert so I wouldn't know how they compare with the average Arabian oil.

How are siraj and asala? worth buying? siraj sounds like it could be very interesting.

cacio
 

noggs

Well-known member
Jan 20, 2007
Siraj is excellent! You were lucky to find it. It was discontinued a number of years ago and I haven't seen it my area for at least three years. Isn't the packaging cool?

There was another older one named Bahrain, in a bottle shaped like a dhow. It is also very good, and inexpensive. I can't find it in my area. If you see it you might want to consider buying it.

I'm sure I've sampled Asala but I don't remember anything specific about it.

Al-Qasr is another good one. It doesn't come prepackaged so you will have to buy it by the tola/half tola/quarter tola, etc. It is more expensive than Siraj or Bahrain but is one of their better quality mukhallets at a reasonable price. It is nowhere as expensive as mukhallets like Riyadh or Abdulaziz or pure ouds like Sioufi or Hindi, all of which are excellent if you want to spend that much.
 

cacio

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Nov 5, 2010
Thanks for the suggestions, I'll take note.

Zahras still has siraj and bahrain in the catalog, but of course this doesn't mean that they have it. (they don't seem to have al-qasr though). Siraj has "Mysore sandalwood" listed in the ingredients, I wonder if it's still so, given that sandalwood harvest has been forbidden.

I wish they'd open a store in the US as well. One cannot really buy stuff blind online. My only experience was in their store in Paris, and of course there is little one can do on a quick visit during travel (especially if, as in paris, the nose is tired from so much sniffing).

cacio
 

noggs

Well-known member
Jan 20, 2007
There is no standard way of transliterating Arabic into English, so Al-Qasr could be spelled Alcazar, Alcaser, Al-Kasr, etc. So you might check for different spellings.
 

cacio

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Nov 5, 2010
Noggs:

oh, yes, now I see it, it's called Mukhallat Kaser in there. $28/tola.

Interestingly, I noticed that Zahra's catalog says that Al Azrya (which I own) has been substituted (?) by Siraj. anyhow, I can see the flower-saffron/sandalwood-oud accord in both.

I loved reading the names of the sprays. Under no circumstances would I want to purchase something called Madame Deluxia, but I'm really curious to smell it!

cacio
 

thecentennial

Well-known member
Dec 26, 2010
Sorry, yes, by mainstream I meant an excellent, niche scent that would appeal to many - purely because it smells so good.

I went back and bought a 1/4 tola of pure oud oil, recommended by one of my saudi colleagues - in english it is dhen oud al kas (?) - was SAR1300/tola...reason I bought it was because it was a pure oud, no faecal opening notes, dries into a wonderful nutty, woody, dry scent - great longevity too.

Siraj is great, would grab some if you see it - wearing it today, and it transforms throughout the day, great scent.
 

noggs

Well-known member
Jan 20, 2007
oh, yes, now I see it, it's called Mukhallat Kaser in there. $28/tola.

I think that is something different. Al-Qasr is definitely much more expensive, like $160/tola here in Saudi and probably more than that from Zahra's.
 

cacio

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Nov 5, 2010
You're making me really curious. The Arabian oud website doesn't list anything, but this is not indicative, since their website is rather disappointing (and they have no online store). Just a spray called Mukhallat Qaser, no price. It's very possible that they are different oils. Or that Zahra's catalog is wrong. Sometimes, they list stuff that they don't have.

thecentennial:
is this Al Kas also from Arabian Oud?

I only wish this stuff was available in the US. I will really have to go to the Gulf someday...

cacio
 

noggs

Well-known member
Jan 20, 2007
Unfortunately all the Arabian perfume houses have terrible websites.

Another one I really like is Saif Al-Arab, but it's not a traditional Arabic type smell.
 

thecentennial

Well-known member
Dec 26, 2010
You're making me really curious. The Arabian oud website doesn't list anything, but this is not indicative, since their website is rather disappointing (and they have no online store). Just a spray called Mukhallat Qaser, no price. It's very possible that they are different oils. Or that Zahra's catalog is wrong. Sometimes, they list stuff that they don't have.

thecentennial:
is this Al Kas also from Arabian Oud?

I only wish this stuff was available in the US. I will really have to go to the Gulf someday...

cacio

yes, another arabian oud pure oud oil.

havent told the wife about my..investments..yet. She isn't a fan of oud.

guess there is some truth in the term opposites attract.
 

badr

Well-known member
Dec 22, 2010
We have one Arabian Oud store in London. I must go visit one day. Incidentally ASAQ have a store there too and Harrods is across the road. That could be a very long day indeed!

Right now I'm trying as many Amouage attars as I can. It's a little easier finding samples (perfumed court, Crystal Flacon etc) than Arabian Oud. 0.5ml is enough to get lots of wearings.
 

cacio

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Nov 5, 2010
ASAQ too, lucky. I like what I've smelled from this brand. I haven't been to London in years either, but if I ever happen there, these seem must-go places.

My first, and so far only, Arabian Oud purchase was at their Paris store, on the Champs Elysees near the Guerlain boutique; but there's so much to smell and buy in Paris that it's probably not the first place where you want to spend time.

cacio
 

LloydLlewellyn

Well-known member
May 9, 2011
Let's resurrect the sleeping. I bought a couple of ml of Al Siraj through Ebay, and I am loving it! It has a mellow oud opening similar to Micallef's Aoud Homme, and now it's in a beautiful smoky phase that reminds me of a smoother Tribute. I am seriously considering getting the whole bottle, although I know that 2 ml are going to last me a long time...
 

Janinae

Member
Mar 4, 2012
Kalemat is just superb! Purchased recently and I`m glad I did. Along with Kalemat I got Hamra - the red one, which is pretty, subtle, fruity-musky mix. If you want Oudh fragrance that is not too strong but stills smells of oudh than I recommend Night Dreams by Al Haramain. If you like oudh mixed with a flower bouquet than try Zahra by Swiss Arab. Great price and definitely worth every cent! :)
 

DULLAH

Well-known member
Oct 25, 2007
What western scent would you compare kalemat's Sweetness level to ? M7 ? Dior Eau Sauvage Parfum ? or something far sweeter, Joop, Bogart Pour Homme ? Tobacco vanille ?

How about it's spiciness or woodiness ? Any western comparisons ?
 

badr_

Member
Nov 19, 2012
kalemat is still going strong, the newer version scoop the awards in the latest fifi awards!

seems like an excellent fragrant
 

badr_

Member
Nov 19, 2012
the new version is called seher al kalemat, in a whitish bottle.

not sure where you can get online but can try their website i guess - www.arabianoud.com

btw, seheer al kalemat means "magic of the words"
 

Janinae

Member
Mar 4, 2012
Thank you Badr. I actually remembering seeing this one somewhere... I have the original Kalemat. It won Arabian fifi 2011 I think and it`s pretty good too.
 

DULLAH

Well-known member
Oct 25, 2007
This stuff is gorgeous.
The "book" packaging is incredible:
Kalemat means "Words" in Arabic.

The flanker 'Shere Al kalemat" (means "Magic of Words"), isn't quite as good, it's god a dry oud and a gasoline note and out of place raspberry note.

But the original kalemat is a drier spicier Tobacco Vanille type of scent.....sexier than Eauv Des bavx and not candylike in the vein of Spicebomb. All cloves and spices up top, all heavy sweet tobacco in the base.....but with a drier woodier, more incensy overtone staying above the obvious Tobacco vanille framework.

It's like if Amouage was 85% of the way finished with their competitor to Tobacco vanille.
 

bgoc

The Ultimate Smell
Basenotes Plus
Jan 2, 2011
Does anybody know if you can get Kalemat the original one from Arabian Oud in London?

I placed an order online today but don't see kalemat there so can ring tomorrow and add.
 

benzganesh

Well-known member
May 22, 2012
I've tried Kalemat, if found it to be a more wearable slightly less complex version of Interlude Man by Amouage.
 

DULLAH

Well-known member
Oct 25, 2007
I've tried Kalemat, if found it to be a more wearable slightly less complex version of Interlude Man by Amouage.
Really ? Interlude has this level of sweetness ? I'm more exited to try it now.

And just to reiterate....lovers of Tobacco Vanille, Eav Des Bavx, and other similar scents, who are seeking something more dry, and more woody/spicy, will likely LOVE Kalemat.
 

LloydLlewellyn

Well-known member
May 9, 2011
By the way, are we talking Kalemat or Kalemat Black here? The regular Kalemat is orange and the Black Kalemat is white (?!?). I have the Black Kalemat and it is like a lighter Interlude Man indeed...
 

perfaddict

Basenotes Plus
Basenotes Plus
Oct 3, 2008
My goodness!!! Kalemat is one wonderful frag, IMO. Everything good said about it above is true. Dullah's descriptions are also very close to my experience, but i smell a strong(ish) agarwood accord similar to that in Aramis Perfume Calligraphy, or even M7, at a stretch. One of my top buys lately. Will definitely check out the Black version.



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lairdangus

Well-known member
Jun 24, 2013
Kalemat is now available from Amazon.com for $59.99 + shipping.



I just ordered mine. Can't wait to get it and share a review.



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DULLAH

Well-known member
Oct 25, 2007
I've tried Kalemat, if found it to be a more wearable slightly less complex version of Interlude Man by Amouage.

I own and love both, and I can sort of see the comparison, as they both have earthy herbal heft, and sweetness.



But Kalemat to me seems much more like a dry, herbal Tobacco vanille, moreso than a lighter Interlude.



But I can definitely see someone who likes Interlude liking kalemat, no question. I love them both.



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lairdangus

Well-known member
Jun 24, 2013
Man oh man, am I excited about this one. It sounds PERFECT.



A drier Tobacco Vanille? A lighter, more wearable Interlude?



Can't really go wrong with either description!



Is there any oud in it?


I own and love both, and I can sort of see the comparison, as they both have earthy herbal heft, and sweetness.



But Kalemat to me seems much more like a dry, herbal Tobacco vanille, moreso than a lighter Interlude.



But I can definitely see someone who likes Interlude liking kalemat, no question. I love them both.


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DULLAH

Well-known member
Oct 25, 2007
Man oh man, am I excited about this one. It sounds PERFECT.



A drier Tobacco Vanille? A lighter, more wearable Interlude?



Can't really go wrong with either description!



Is there any oud in it?

No discernable or noticable Oud. If anything, a very light and dry Cambodian way underneath all else.



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lairdangus

Well-known member
Jun 24, 2013
In ancient times, books were rare and precious objects. The learned elite treasured them. Scholars and holy men spent countless hours transcribing and illustrating them. Calligraphy held a place at the high table of the arts.



Kalemat, which means "words" in Arabic, pays tribute to this lost era in its exquisite packaging. It arrives in a beautiful oversized box designed to look like an antique arabic book. When opened, the box reveals a smaller, ribbon-bound tome which contains the bottle of perfume itself. And so even before the first spray, you know that this an oriental perfume in its full glory--dramatic, confident, mysterious, exotic, precious beyond compare. Anyone who remembers the days before the Internet, when words came at a price and books had to be found will thrill at this packaging.



The juice itself does not disappoint. Kalemat opens with a lush jammy rose-berry accord, balanced perfectly by incense and a hint of dry woods. The berry note is apparently bilberry, which was new to me. It is sweet and perhaps slightly tart. Wonderful. Novel.


After 20 minutes or so, the berry notes recede, leaving behind a sumptuous base of incense, woods, and lightly jammy rose. This is the heart of Kalemat, and it is apparently inspired by the Middle Eastern hospitality traditions around bakhoor, a household incense of dried wood and rose. It reminded me somewhat of Jubilation XXV, but Kalemat is somehow deeper and rounder. There are no jagged edges here. Although it is not listed in the ingredients or the notes, I am convinced that there is a trace of high quality oud in this as well. It is used here not as an individual note, but as a fixative and an amplifier of the other notes. Perfect!



Over the next 8-10 hours, the rose fades out, then the incense, leaving only the driest cedar-like scent, like the inside of an ancient chest found in an old Cairo apartment.



Kalemat is everything I had hoped it would be. I've been searching for an authentic and wearable Arabian scent. It is no easy thing! I've sampled virtually every offering from Amouage, a number of rare attars, low cost oils from al Rehab, and various western "interpretations" of middle eastern fragrances. None has come close to Kalemat. It is a deeply relaxing scent, perfect for stressful days at the office. It speaks something of eternal truths, of timeless values, of the cycle of life-death-rebirth that renders all of our transient worldly concerns puny by comparison.



Let me put it this way: I am a perfume lover but not a perfume collector. I wouldn't know what to do with dozens (or like my friend Hedric hundreds!) of bottles of the stuff. I try to limit my wardrobe to around 7-10 bottles at any given time. Kalemat will always be one of those bottles



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