This is an attractive, accessible oud scent. All of the intrigue and mysterious exoticism, with no challenging notes. A leather-spice chord mingles with oud and is framed by a old wood foundation. The impression is of an old spice trunk which has sailed the world on a clipper ship. Rich but not sweet. Warming.
A rather Western take on oud, with the eponymous ingredient the lead among an emsemble rather than standing alone. Having said that, the oud is present at all stages of development, as you might expect, thus rendering note pyramids and models of development rather moot. The overall impression is one of an attempt at polished sophistication rather than whatever it is that single-note ouds attempt to communicate.
Don't get me wrong, I like the smell of oud and I like the "concept" - I just have not yet found an oud scent that I would want on me for any length of time. Something like AdPCO gets as close as anything has done to achieving a workable compromise. It achieves this by bolting - somehow - the bitter and overpowering woody oud notes to a sharper cologne opening, and a leathery base. It's hard to imagine how this could possibly work, but it's a lot better than it sounds.
It opens with citrus and oud. The latter is an omnipresent as is Blanche Dubois in A Streetcar named Desire. Oud alone comprises the heart, while it is accompanied by leather in the drydown. The latter alone makes this a noteworthy scent, given the premise, as noted by Turin in The Guide, that oud and leather together make a lot of sense. A bit like we thought Pacino and De Niro should act together. (Then they did "Heat" - I know.)
That being said, I'm not in the market for this just yet. It's just not exciting. AdPCO ticks a lot of boxes, but flicks rather few switches. I can recommend it as a palatable take on oud, but that almost defeats the purpose. An interesting achievement, but not something I can love right now.
This is the most interesting oud fragrance I've ever smelled. It is very unique and lasts (no joke) 24 hours. It's quite expensive, but I got my 3.4 oz bottle for 170. There is no way I'd pay retail for this.
Well, nothing more and nothing less than one may expect from an “oud” take on Acqua di Parma Colonia. A wannabe-posh, soapy, sheer, very smooth (and very synthetic) sort of citrus-floral-musk blend infused with a dark, rubbery, bitter yet overall quite tamed down and exceedingly artificial woody accord of oud and birch, becoming drier and muskier as hours pass. I must say that somehow, the initial “fizzy-soapy” frame which comprises the oud accord works, and makes Colonia Oud smell as a fairly pleasant sort of “bright oud” with a laundry vibe. There’s a tangy sort of citrus-geranium accord which fits in surprisingly well. Given the bitter rubbery dirtiness of the synthetic oud note, it creates quite a pleasant play of contrasts – which will eventually fade away and leave the stage mostly to rubber and synthetic woods, but until it’s there, it’s nice. Still though, even considering that, it’s all really too cheap and ultimately uninspired to sparkle some interest. The “Colonia” side is just as flat and artificial as in the Intensa version (I’m still wondering how the Colonia line can comprise gems like the Assoluta next to utter garbage like the Intensa), and the oud accord is for me nothing different from any drugstore oud accord you can find anywhere these days. The price and the “luxury” packaging would let you think we’re in the same ballpark of something like, say, Dior Leather Oud, but truth is, we’re more close to Ferrari Oud, or Versace Oud, a Montale imitation dupe or whatever other lower-key designer ouds. Just a matter of quality: flat, synthetic, as much generically refined as completely “muted”. Nothing against that class of scents by the way, but there’s a reason if they cost three or four times less than this.
Not sure why (or well, reading what I just wrote until now, I can see why actually), but at the very first sniff my mind just came out with a spontaneous association – “what an airport fragrance this is”. Out of the blue, I just imagined a mid-level manager waiting for his plane. Not a wealthy businessman snorting fine complimentary cocaine in some vip lounge, just some ordinary businessman playing with an empty cracked bottle of water, boring the hell out of himself, probably needing a shower after a two hours taxi ride to the airport. Think of focusing your nose on some details – the citrus musky cologne he wore before leaving the motel now mixing with sweat, the cheap smell of his ready-to-wear laundered suit, the rubbery smell of his trolley bag and of the airport seats, the overall sense of suspended, depressing boredom which fills such “non-places” like airports. That’s the mood of Acqua di Parma Oud, basically somehow a sort of slightly more pretentious “office scent” with a professional look (not refined, not sophisticated, just “professional”) and a subtle dirtier vein. And by that I don’t mean something “sexy” , just literally dirty, sweaty and rubbery. It’s all filled with a nondescript, quite deep feeling of restrained, unemotional “nothingness”. And well, it smells a bit more cheap than it should anyway. Not blatantly cheap and not completely tragic, but definitely unworthy the price tag. Kind of similar to Indonesian Oud by Zegna (and just as much dull as that).
01st February, 2016 (last edited: 14th February, 2016)
Acqua di Parma's Colonia Oud does for Oud what Colonia Leather does for leather--softens the main ingredient by adding some citrus, making it more year-round-appropriate. Whereas the opening was a bit harsh, this dried down into something very similar to Colonia Leather. I don't get much of a sense of the other notes--it comes off as mainly a blend of citrus, a little neroli perhaps, and the main oud aspect.
Projection and longevity are slightly weaker for the "cologne concentree"--performance was somewhat better on Colonia Leather---so the value is lost somewhat.
This rounds out the concentree trio for me, and it's a very strong group overall. It might be worth trying Colonia Oud on one arm and Colonia Leather on the other, since they end up drying down similarly. Definitely a good exploration by Acqua di Parma---Oud, Leather, and Ambra are each worth trying.
7 out of 10