In terms of quality, Indo Uno is among our top 5 highest quality Indonesian oud productions ever.
But when you look at the price, you're left scratching your head how that could be.
Like Kecantikan, this is the extract of several different Indonesian agarwood species. But unlike Kecantikan, instead of using raw materials only from Borneo island, Indo Uno boasts the most diverse assortment of Indonesian flavors you can imagine.
If Kecantikan proved oned thing, its that 1 + 1 does not equal 2, when you co-distill various species: the whole is greater than the sum of its parts. The synergies created by the different scent notes from the various species as they fuse and bond during distillation is something that cannot be replicated by simply mixing together ready-made oud oils of different species.
West Borneo Microcarpa, West Borneo Beccariana, East Borneo Malaccensis, North Sumatran Malaccensis, Sulawesi Cumingiana, Papua Gyrinops, and Sumbawa Gyrinops. All in one, and in this order in terms of proportions.
So why the ridiculously low price?
Like Raksmey, Kecantikan and Yang Terang, this oud is a 'cheat' high grade oud oil.
Over time, as raw materials from various regions are collected and used for distillation, some of the raw material doesn't end up being used. Reasons include some of the wood stock being from parts of the tree that take a lot of time to carve away the bunk wood and they aren't cost-effective for selling as incense-grade chips, or wood which simply did not fit inside the distillation pots due to reaching full capacity.
These materials pile up at the warehouse over time, and the cleaning and carving staff get to them when they have free time to spare.
The majority of the raw material consisted of wood like this: extremely high grade wood harvested from tree branches. Aside from this type of raw wood being remarkably cost-effective due to hunters not wanting to "waste" time carving and cleaning agarwood like this, there's another reason why this wood is fantastic for distillation: branch agarwood actually yields the finest (and highest yield) of oil -- sometimes up to double or triple, compared to wood collected from the trunk heartwood.
Now combine this impressive yield factor with Agar Aura's special extraction techniques which already give up to 10 times richer and larger yields than conventional distillation... and now you know why this oil is so affordable despite the high quality.
For those of you who aren't well-versed in agarwood grades and prices, what you saw in the photo above is A and AA grade agarwood which sells at a market price of $2,500 to $4,000 per kilogram wholesale (some of the wood even qualified as Super grade). At this price, given a typical yield using conventional distillation techniques, you'd be looking at $2,000-$2,500 a bottle.
As you can see, Indo Uno is a steal.
So why can't every oud distillation be like this? Simple: because it takes a lot of time to not just collect this type of material, but also to carve away the bunk wood to keep only the resinous patches.
But whenever we get the chance (typically once or twice a year), Agar Aura is very eager to bring you these uniquely affordable high grade oud oils.
As was the case with its co-distill predecessor Kecantikan, the various species were used in carefully measured ratios to give Indo Uno a perfume-like composition.
It starts off with a burst of bergamot and grapefruit (East Borneo Malaccensis), which then settles down to reveal herbal (West Borneo Microcarpa) and tea-like notes (Sumatran Malaccensis). Before long, shimmery silver ambergris emerges (Sumatran Malaccensis) together with honeyed sweet notes (West Borneo Beccariana, West Borneo Microcarpa, Papua Gyrinops, Sumbawa Gyrinops). You will get sudden whiffs of not just tea but sweet minty and herbal-floral tea (Sulawesi Cumingiana), with a healthy dose of fatty milk cream (Sumbawa Gyrinops and Sulawesi Cumingiana). The drydown is a blissful orchestra of ambergris, sweet florals, bitter herbal, minty and camphoraceous woodiness.
Only one significant Indonesian oud species is missing from this oud: Papua Aquilaria Filaria. But considering the overall theme and flavor of this oud, that is probably for the best, as the muddy Filaria notes would have stuck out like a sore thumb. Gyrinops Sp. of the same island fits much better into the composition.
Indo Uno is your one-ticket-covers-all pass for a truly complete Indonesian oud experience. Covering almost every prominent species, and islands from as far west as Sumatra and far east as Papua, this is an Indonesian oud lover's dream come true.