As I’ve written before, I am rather resistant to By Kilian. Kilian Hennessy is young, thin, broodingly handsome, talented and very wealthy. This makes some of us who are rotund, poor and into the AARP years terribly jealous. I’m sure that he’s most likely even a very nice person, which makes me even more wretched. So, please forgive me G-d and Tonstant Weader that in my black little heart I want to hate Amber Oud.
I just can’t.
It’s bad enough that he took two of my favorite notes and mixed them so well. But he had to add a dash of vanilla..
Amber is more the star here, hence the billing. It’s a refined, rather dry amber with only a touch of the glottal heat that makes Lutens Ambre Sultan not only the reference amber scent for me but also one that’s difficult for me to wear when the temps are much above 50. The oud in here is also of a refined sort. It doesn’t jump out at you waving tentacles like some of the Montales that I have tried (and loved; I’m all about the big gesture) and isn’t as raspy as Le Labo. But then we go into the kitchen and add in the vanilla: almost as plush as Guerlain Spiriteuse and with a bit of that boozy punch to it, but not as over-the-top. I love my bottle of the Guerlain, but it’s another one that’s best when it’s cold out. Really cold. I would think on a hot summer day it would be like being smothered by a giant marshmallow. I ran around doing errands involving walking and a poorly air-conditioned BH shuttle bus and I never felt I was importuning in anything other than perhaps the way too casual attire I’d chosen for a last-minute decision to sit in on a city planning commission meeting. I was dressed down, but as my scent twin points out, this “smells like a million dollars” and so did I. It’s a Perfect Manhattan Cocktail of a scent, a wonderful, intoxicating concoction blending sweet, smoky and dry. I feel more elegant, more Fred Astaire holding one. I feel more elegant and Fred Astaire wearing this.
Even if I look more Fred Flintstone..
By Kilian Amber Oud is $395 for 50ml EDP (sigh) and is available at Luckyscent, Aedes, Bergdorf Goodman and Saks 5th Avenue. I received the sample by registering on the company’s Facebook page. Go see if you still can too.
Image: Wikipedia Commons