As I sit and enjoy the last sample swipes of IO's Nagaland Imperiale, I thought I'd share some of what I've experienced thus far. First, the Oud! What a difference one week can make, both in the depth of one's sense perception but also in one's capacity to welcome and enjoy the pleasures of this powerful exotic oil. Here is the list of Ouds I've worn: RP's Cambodi Fusion - 1999 Co-Distillation RP's SumbaWalla - Emerald Incese EO's Oud Yusuf EO's Assam Wilde IO's Sinensis III IO's Viet Zephyr IO's Nagaland Imperiale Though I chose these ouds somewhat at random (and several were complimentary gifts), I feel that this cross-section of oud profiles was broad enough to teach me about the primary aromatic attirbutes of agarwood: Wood! Even as their surface colors and complexities are so varied, each of these oils is built upon a foundation of sweet woodiness that is uniquely and magically "oud." Of these oils, two stood out as outliers; SumbaWalla was so sticky-sweet that it smelled more like medicine than wood, even as it dried down. And Sinensis III was so warm and hauntingly caramelized, not powdery or fruity or floral, that it smelled more like . . . I don't even know . . . smoke nectar? Leather! The Cambodi is the leatheriest, while the NI also features some less smoky, funkier leather. Ensar's AW acheives little-to-no leather in it's spicy-smooth, unthreatening profile. Barn! While the Cambodi had a distinct leatheriness that is perhaps barn-adjacent, the NI and the AW were the funkmasters. AW is certainly smoother and less intense in the opening act, whereas NI has a hot, raw, earthy, even slightly cheesy wildness that speaks much more loudly than Ensar's. Flowers! Of the oils I've worn thus far, I think this profile is probably underrepresented, but Ensar's OY gets there is a hurry. RP's Walla Patta is also arguably floral-ish. Is there such a thing as a green flower? Spice! Nagaland Imperiale is the pepperiest, Emerald Incense opens up with quite a bit of grassy heat as well. Fruit! All kinds of fruit! VZ lychee lime! Cambodi dried purple plums! Nagaland lychees, melons, and a few cherries too!! SumbaWalla guava! Assam Wilde . . . banana? Cacao? Smells aside, I've noticed that owning these first few ouds feels like safeguarding treasures. They make me want to have a clean, well-lit, elevated place in my home to keep them - a positive side-effect. In fact, if you were to ask which of these is my favorite thus, far, I'd probably say Sinensis III, based on the fact that I feel most protective of it. I can't just swipe it willy nilly - it calls for a special occasion! This is how you know you've got something special; the oil inspires me to be my best! Now, for my final note: what to buy next? I'm trying to pace myself and set a sustainable rate of consumption, and I've had to stop myself before nearly buying several ouds. I found a very good price on 2011-2012 Ahora Kyaku, but that sounds like a very specific dark tonality that doesn't instantly appeal to me. I've been very impressed with Imperial Oud thus far, and feel as if I'd probably love any of the oils they have currently on sale, though I'm sorry I missed Shaj Jahan. At the moment, I'm leaning hardest towrads pulling the trigger on AA's Meitei. It's reasonably priced and seems like I'll kick myself if I miss it. Any thoughts? Best examples from other artisans? Oils of a kind I've not yet experienced? Good value ouds? Thanks for an invigorating and enlightening week of ouddiction!