Originally Posted by Kron
I've worn these six quite a few times now and have sampled in the region of 20-30 various Ouds this year ranging from Commercial to the likes of Borneo 3000 and Oud Luban so...
I've been blown away by three of the Oud Stars in particular and they are:
-Al Khatt projects like a monster on me and I'm tempted to say it might be my personal favourite. Its a pure middle eastern style fragrance with an incredibly addictive slightly sweet and incredibly defined woodly floral mix. Absolutely screams quality and is one of those aura style scents that gives you that uplifting feeling.
-Gao takes the usual supporting cast of Saffron and spices and turns the bar to 11, The quality of the Saffron in this is absolutely stunning and dwarves the comparitive note in the Maison Francis Kurkdijian Oud. The character of Oud in this is sublime and comforting. On its own the Oud note in this would be very highly regarded but the overall composition is genuinely masterful.
-Zafar feels like an Oud inspired evolution of CDG Avignon with MUCH higher quality ingredients. The first hour is a little challenging but the drydown is quite exceptional with an incredible mix of the highest quality incense I've ever had the pleasure of sniffing, Pepper & crisp apple all supported by a very potent rich no compromise Oud. Feels like your own personal spiritual journey. This one paints a very clear scene and blows you away while doing it. A great experience.
We then get to the other three:
-Mamluk is quite a departure for Xerjoff as its an unconventional Gourmand Oud scent. Throughout the length of the fragrance you'll smell a very sweet honey and caramel which has an almost rosey underlayer which stops it from being too sickly. 5 of the range are pure masculine but this one is unisex and has a very pretty oud which smells a little skanky close up but it always compliments the supporting notes. Quite intreaging.
-Fars is their attempt at a more commercial contempory scent with a fleeting oud character. I'm probably doing it a disservice as its better than 95% of the fragrances I've tried this year but doesn't really compare to the likes of the top three in this range. Its smooth as silk and has a solidity to it thats like a velvety chocolate but it comprises of notes you'd normally find in a traditional Italian cologne. Another one of those weird Xerjoff mixup attempts but it does work and is particularly good a few hours in.
-Najaf, Hmm I really don't like this one as the basenotes are verging on offensive and it has a totally different offputting character that the other scents don't exhibit. For me this one doesn't work and the base is too smokey and gives you that heady feeling and stink of a cheap cigarette. I find it very strange this one is part of the line as it feels like it doesn't belong. A big AVOID for me.
I personally think this line is more fleshed out and deserves to be much more successful than the standard Shooting Stars of which I'm not totally sold on. They all have truly excellent longevity and Al Khatt, Gao and Zafar have big sillage while the others are well above average.
Kron has really given us some very accurate one paragraph descriptions. I just want to add a few thoughts.
Al Khatt - Wasn't expecting to be so blown away, the quality of ingredients and the execution of the blend is impeccable. It just may be my favorite also.
Gao - I'm wearing this as I type today - everything Kron said and more. The saffron really is awesome. I thought I did't care for saffron, until I smelled Gao. Look out, Gao is extremely intoxicating.
Zafar - In the end this high quality oud drys down to be a high quality incense frag. What a beautiful journey Zafar gives us during the course of a wearing.
Mamluk - I think Kron slightly short changes Mamluk, not because he didn't like it though - he was simply so taken, as I was, with Al Khatt, Gao and Zafar. I love Mamluk on my wife, and she loves it too. Long lasting, and the caramel is divine.
Fars - Most definitely the westernized scent of the group. This is Kobe reformulated (not really, just wanted to give you an idea what it might be like), and just as good. The now infamous Xerjoff citrus accord shines through and gives us a conservative, upscale, and unique gentlemens perfume. Fars would be at home with anyone taking a ride in Air Force One.
Najaf - I guess Kron and I have one disagreement. The only thing that should be avoided is smelling where you sprayed up close, it's skanky that way. What Najaf exhibits in the air to the wearer, and others is a totally different matter. The sillage is a nice woody smokey affair that's unique to my nose. Very pleasing if you don't stick your nose in it.
Xerjoff has really delivered the goods with the new Oud Star Collection. High quality ingredients with unique, exemplary blends, to tantalize, and exhilarate our noses with new experiences.
I hope our fellow Basenoter, and USA Xerjoff Distributor (cairomerta) had some say in the outcome. He has a great nose himself. Kudos to the Xerjoff team for taking the time and effort to do perfume right, from the ground up. All the attention to detail really shines in the Oud Star Collection.