By Kilian Sacred Wood ~ fragrance review

Shiva as the Destroyer of the Three Cities of the Demons

Sacred Wood, along with Imperial Tea, finishes off the Asian Tales fragrance collection from niche line By Kilian (we’re still expecting at least one more scent for In The Garden of Good and Evil, and the next series is reportedly to be called Addictive State of Mind). Sacred Wood was inspired by the Indian tale of Savitri and Satyavan from the Mahabharata, and promises “the olfactory impression of an authentic Sandalwood from Mysore”.1 As most perfumistas know, real Mysore sandalwood is no longer used in perfumery due to its scarcity.

Like Imperial Tea, Sacred Wood was developed by perfumer Calice Becker. Sacred Wood opens on citrus-y, spicy wood; it’s not a dead ringer for my long-time love, Diptyque Tam Dao, but it reminded me of Tam Dao right away…

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By Kilian Imperial Tea ~ perfume review

jasmine-yin-hao

Imperial Tea is the latest addition to the Asian Tales collection from niche line By Kilian. It is being launched along with Sacred Wood, and the duo made me sit up and take notice: I’m not always a huge fan of the By Kilian line, and the earlier scents in the Asian Tales series — Bamboo Harmony, Water Calligraphy and Flower of Immortality — pretty much left me cold, but jasmine tea and Mysore sandalwood? Theoretically, at least, I’m in.

I’ll talk about Sacred Wood later (possibly on Thursday); today’s focus is the Imperial Tea, inspired by the Asian tale of “The Big Red Toga Tea” (you can read versions here and here), and promising “the olfactory impression of authentic Jasmin tea”.1 Jasmine tea is one of my favorite smells in the world. I drink a cup of Yin Hao jasmine nearly every morning, and while there are fancier (and more expensive) versions of jasmine tea, few of them can beat a really top quality Yin Hao. The smell from a freshly opened pouch or tin is exquisite, and the taste is about as close to a drinkable perfume as you are likely to get.

The Imperial Tea fragrance was developed by perfumer Calice Becker, and it’s darned close to perfection…

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By Kilian Apple Brandy ~ fragrance review

oak barrels

Apple Brandy is new from niche line By Kilian. It’s exclusive to the brand’s boutique in New York City (boo! hiss! we hate localized perfume exclusives!) and according to brand founder Kilian Hennessy, is meant as a “bit of a wink to the Big Apple and cognac”.

And hey, that’s just what it is, so much so that this will be a shorter review than usual. Apple Brandy opens as a fruity rum cocktail, liberally garnished with apple slices. It warms quickly, taking on heavier oak and amber notes. Within a few minutes, it’s closer to something you might reasonably call brandy…

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