Roja Dove is all about quality. "Made with no reference to cost" is a comment he often makes in relation to his own and others' creations, and he puts excellence in materials above all. It may be that his Aoud is not the most outlandishly creative, but it is superbly well blended and the quality in the materials makes it an almost hypnotic experience. I went through samples of all Montale ouds, and they only left me irritated: curry here, saffron there, not one felt authentic or like it wanted to tell me anything. Roja Dove Aoud is a true story, anything but boring.
Ok, we got it: Rose and Oud do great together. Can we move on now?
Roja's Oud is a disappointment to say the least. Yes, the quality is there but, at these prices, this is a very basic condition. The problem is that, besides the quality of the ingredients, there's little (if nothing) else. The same, now stereotyped, rose-oud iteration we've experienced way too many times. JHAG Midnight Oud, Dior Oud Ispahan, Portrait Of A Lady, Dark Rose, countless Montales and countless others original rose-oud oils. Smells good but it's TOTAL cliché.
You have 1k dollars to spare and want something really exclusive? Get a selection of real oud oils.
21st June, 2012 (last edited: 02nd January, 2015)
Oo, another rose-oud fragrance to try! If you're like me you're breaking out in goose bumps just thinking about it. Actually yes I'm just being a smart aleck, rose-oud accords aren't my idea of big fun. But fragrance Philistine that I may be, I am willing to be seduced by any perfumer who can come up with a rose-oud I can love and cherish. Roja Dove Aoud inches a little closer to that seemingly unattainable nirvana. A wonderful opening quickly settles down into a very nice smelling balanced low-key rose-oud fragrance. Does that sound enough like damning with faint praise? In a world of rose-ouds Roja Dove Aoud maintains a quiet elegance at least. It mercifully avoids the bizarre rubbery hysteria of Black Aoud by Montale. And Amouage Homage, while clearly the superior composition vis-a-vis Roja Dove Aoud, has an opulence that always seems to wear out it's welcome over time no matter how lightly applied. That shimmering frankincense. That intense focus. I just can't take it for too long. And when my harem pants are at the cleaners forget it. Compared to these aforementioned monsters, Roja Dove Aoud glows quietly at a more dignified level. There's also a hint of something dark at the center that gives it a slightly brooding quality. And just think: when you tell all the victims in the know-know that you're wearing Roja Dove you can watch their eyeballs spin around in their sockets as they wonder, "How does he do it?" One thing: I wouldn't wear that white shirt with this pretty garnet colored liquid. It's going to stain for-ev-er.
While Roja Dove Aoud is a very wearable rose-oud, it's more than a stone's throw from magical and just as far from my favorite fragrances which feature oud.
26th April, 2012 (last edited: 10th April, 2013)