Comments & Reviews

CUSTOMER PRODUCT REVIEWS
Because incense appreciation is ultimately subjective, we value a wide range of opinions and clients are welcome to share their incense experiences — both positive and negative. These reviews and descriptions are very helpful for both experienced and newer users. Please note contributors receive no compensation.

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Reviews

Tanak Thupten Ling Monastery (Grade 1, Grade 2, Grade 3, Grade 4, Grade 5) “…the grades go down you’re not left thinking the lower incenses are worth skipping…an absolutely terrific, fascinating monastery line…” Mike McLatchey Olfactory Rescue Service Oct 21, 2021

Baigu Temple Medicine Buddha Backflow Cones “…The wormwood isn’t really as present in this format and the sandalwood is a lot more intense…” Mike McLatchey Olfactory Rescue Service Oct 15, 2021

Guru Chan Dreen Poejer Incense “…I’d liken that sweetness to the mix of sandalwoods, juniper and maybe a bit of resin, but to me the quality overall is kind of red berry like…complimenting the sweetness with a bit of cinnamon and clove…” Mike McLatchey Olfactory Rescue Service Oct 3, 2021

Zurkhar Herbal Incense “…I find Zurkhar mostly fascinating because it’s a bit of a chameleon and has a few other notes it likes to surprise you with. This one’s a bit of a work of art, I’m not sure it’s herbal in the sense I usually think of it, but it’s certainly quite pleasant.” Mike McLatchey Olfactory Rescue Service Sept 29, 2021

N-M Jewel of Ancient Incense “… there’s no question this is a pleasant blend and maybe not a bad idea as a Tibetan starter incense as it’s super friendly, super affordable…” Mike McLatchey Olfactory Rescue Service Sept 26, 2021

Mensang Ja-Tsa Gyed (Stick)“…the incense is a bit sweet, quite herbal in the profile, along with the woodiness. It has something of a cooling middle and a very streamlined whole for an incense with as many ingredients as it claims…” Mike McLatchey Olfactory Rescue Service Sept 23, 2021

Labrang Monastery Formula Incense Coils “…feels like something of a hybrid between a woody coil and a Tibetan incense which makes them quite fascinating.” Mike McLatchey Olfactory Rescue Service Sept 20, 2021

Ba’er Que Si Cone Incense “…The aroma still falls in a roughly autumnal area…It’s a bit milder and less complex… it’s still pleasant…” Mike McLatchey Olfactory Rescue Service Sept 18, 2021

Nehnang No1 Tibetan Incense “…It’s just that within the base there’s a large amount of spice and herbal notes that come out that show an almost delicate intricacy to the composition that is intensely fascinating… it’s fairly unique in its scent profile…Anyway this is certainly recommended for the monastery incense afficionado for sure, it shows the marks of a blender of high skill and sophistication.” Mike McLatchey Olfactory Rescue Service Sept 17, 2021

Kathok King of Incense “…It’s certainly a well balanced blend…a pretty friendly incense, in fact one I might recommend as an introduction to more pungent blends, as its only a step in that direction, which the heavy spices tend to reign in. The spice profile in particular is really lovely, at times almost like it sits on something sweet and yet the tangy richness really gives it something wonderful to play off of…” Mike McLatchey Olfactory Rescue Service Sept 13, 2021

Ze Li Monastery Incense “… it seems to have a very light wood base to it… There’s a little bit of musk in it which I mostly notice due to the way it interacts with the cardamom and cloves mix… like Ganden this incense has the ability to surprise you with the occasional subnote you may have missed…” Mike McLatchey Olfactory Rescue Service Sept 12, 2021

Dhe-Tsang Sacred Mountains Incense “…the gadan kyenba seems to interact mostly with the more evergreen and woody notes you usually find, which is a nice balance with the usual high-altitude notes. There’s a sort of autumnal leafy scent…It’s a pleasant stick, somehow both powerful and gentle at the same time…” Mike McLatchey Olfactory Rescue Service Sept 9, 2021

Dri-Zhem Poi “…has a lot of the same sort of berry and sweeter highlights and a touch of that almost tobacco-like herbal quality most of the style exhibits…it has an overall gentle profile that makes it fairly perfect as a first-time Bhutanese entry…” Mike McLatchey Olfactory Rescue Service Sept 5, 2021

Ganden Monastery Backflow Cones “…So overall it’s a nice cone, although personally I think you sacrifice a bit of quality with this format overall. But in many ways it’s a bit denser of an aroma than the regular stick with the saffron more present than the stick. It’s still quite a premium aroma and very enjoyable.” Mike McLatchey Olfactory Rescue Service Sept 1, 2021

Ganden Monastery Incense “…There’s woods, berry, spice and camphor. Some level of tanginess in the mix, certainly some level of saffron, a bit of the “corn chip” scent…overall this is a fairly mild incense, it doesn’t have the usual punch of a lot of monastery incenses, so it may be a decent gateway to the style.” Mike McLatchey Olfactory Rescue Service Sept 1, 2021

Lhawang Driden Jaju Incense “…This crafting softens what would be the natural harshness of some cut wood by adding a nice bit of spice to the mix… Overall this is certainly a Bhutanese style worth familiarizing yourself…” Mike McLatchey Olfactory Rescue Service Aug 28, 2021

Nehnang No2 Tibetan Incense “…this has a more powerful spice and musk presence, occasionally you will feel the combined weight of the two show up in quite an impressive way that I don’t think I’ve quite seen in any of these other named incenses…” Mike McLatchey Olfactory Rescue Service Aug 25, 2021

Drichog Chotrin (BJI) “… is a solid entry into the field, … It has the strong tensile strength of a fully blended incense, the berry/cherry mix that acts as the front note, the sandalwood, the musk, the floral and saffron elements…” Mike McLatchey Olfactory Rescue Service Aug 22, 2021

Dzongsar Tibetan Incense “… It is still the model of the pungent incense…despite its inherent funkiness, it’s really a deep monastery incense, certainly on the same level of depth as the Holy Lands, Samye Monastery or Wara…” Mike McLatchey Olfactory Rescue Service Aug 18, 2021

Dzongsar Relieving Incense “…Relieving is a bit drier nor quite as tangy and nor is that funky note…kind of smell like wormwood…It is a powerfully strong incense…” Mike McLatchey Olfactory Rescue Service Aug 18, 2021

Dzongsar Offering Incense of Concentration “…it’s a very fresh smelling incense, but these evergreen qualities are actually fairly mild overall, which lets the sandalwood play through quite a bit…this is also a surprisingly complex and involved incense…” Mike McLatchey Olfactory Rescue Service Aug 18, 2021

Dzongsar Be Dur Ya “…takes the flagship scent and pushes most of the intensity and pungency in the background more, letting most of the aroma ride on a sort of elegant, smooth woodiness…At separate times, you get the high altitude scent, a bit of the autumnal herby-tobacco like vibe, and then the mild funk will ride underneath it all and that interplay of all the different elements really makes it a very interesting incense indeed…” Mike McLatchey Olfactory Rescue Service Aug 18, 2021

Tholing Monastery Incense “…The more you burn this the more you’re likely to cycle through what is essentially a kaleidoscope of high-altitude delights…” Mike McLatchey Olfactory Rescue Service Aug 15, 2021

Drigung Fragrant Incense “…an incense I’ve moved up to my top personal echelon. This isn’t too sweet either and just has the right amount of tanginess and it seems rather lively with fire-y energy, like an aromatic fire breathing dragon or a lion midleap…” Mike McLatchey Olfactory Rescue Service Aug 13, 2021

Zhayang Nunnery Incense “…I really can’t say enough about how high quality the woods smell on this one, they’re just really bold and defined. It isn’t too far over into the evergreen camp, so the sandalwood feels as prominent as what I’d assume is some very nice juniper wood. Anyway this is a really fresh and pleasant blend…” Mike McLatchey Olfactory Rescue Service Aug 10, 2021

Drogön Chögyal Phagpa “…Phagpa incense seems to fall into a more well-rounded aromatic profile. While it has woods, a bit of evergreen scent, and a decent amount of musk, it also has a bit of sweet and spiciness that tends to bring out the wood contours of the incense more…” Mike McLatchey Olfactory Rescue Service Aug 9, 2021

Mt. Kailash Holy Incense “… it has deep evergreen tendencies that make it a wonderful morning scent, it has a really distinct and strong hit of camphor in it, always a favorite of mine, and it really has a surprising amount of complexity to it….evergreen, camphor, mint, herbal, wood and spice all rolled into one and everything popping with aroma. Recommended.” Mike McLatchey Olfactory Rescue Service Aug 7, 2021

Dhe-Tsang Monastery Incense “… It has a pretty healthy and more obvious mix of sandalwood in the blend…It’s nicely done…” Mike McLatchey Olfactory Rescue Service Aug 4, 2021

Agarwood Heart of Shambhala “…overall complex bouquet. It can be sweet, leafy, musky, and quite arresting at times in that the combination of its elements hides secrets…There’s no other incense quite like this one.” Mike McLatchey Olfactory Rescue Service Aug 2, 2021

Spirit of Shambhala “…the evergreen is just so deep and intense and the wood base it’s all mixed in is also particularly good quality, there’s no feeling this is made from anything inexpensive or lacking in aromatics. ” Mike McLatchey Olfactory Rescue Service Aug 2, 2021

Ga’re Therapeutic Incense “…a very powerful top note, and it is of course mixed in with that almost salty, pistachio like aroma… this feels like it could be a sleeper favorite ” Mike McLatchey Olfactory Rescue Service July 29, 2021

Qinrun Tibetan Incense “…this is a very beautiful incense with a lot of richness and complexity.” Mike McLatchey Olfactory Rescue Service July 25, 2021

Huiyou Tibetan Incense “…a therapeutic incense with a number of different uses but its central potency lies in how well it really captures this high altitude evergreen and wood aroma…  it’s well worth it.” Mike McLatchey Olfactory Rescue Service July 25, 2021

Gangtruk Grade B Incense “…the overall aroma is a lot more tangy and akin to the more harvest-like, rhododendron-infused Tibetan sticks. This one has a bit more of the funky Tibetan note…” Mike McLatchey Olfactory Rescue Service July 22, 2021

Gangtruk Grade A Incense “…Overall this is one of the best of the real traditional Tibetan incenses, it has has a lot of the same elements that other traditionals have, but this is of really peak richness and quality.” Mike McLatchey Olfactory Rescue Service July 22, 2021

Gadong Monastery Grade 2 Incense “…while rhododendron isn’t listed, this also has that sort of harvest/autumn leaves sort of vibe incenses with it usually have. It is definitely a different incense from the Grade 1, far less high altitude and spicy. The musk is gentle and so is the overall pitch of the incense…” Mike McLatchey Olfactory Rescue Service July 19, 2021

Gelephu Incense “…That berry-like juniper sweetness is really the incense’s main note, but I like the way the rhododendron weaves its way through a bit like a tobacco note or something, it gives it a slight touch of wildness to it…It’s quite well-balanced and I find it really uplifting as well. A splendid example of a Butanese incense and very affordable too.” Mike McLatchey Olfactory Rescue Service July 17, 2021

Baigu Temple Medicine Buddha Incense “…While Baigu is a bit drier than some of the more richer incenses, I think it’s obvious how complex and involved the aroma is…” Mike McLatchey Olfactory Rescue Service July 15, 2021

Five Fragrance Tibetan Incense “…this really puts forward a gorgeous evergreen resin and wood scent that I genuinely find pleasant…” Mike McLatchey Olfactory Rescue Service July 12, 2021

Ba’er Qude Si Incense “…The high-altitude feel comes into it in a powerful way… Overall this is a really gorgeous…” Mike McLatchey Olfactory Rescue Service July 10, 2021

Gadong Tsendok Ling Monastery Incense “… in many ways this formula I think might be a bit friendlier to newcomers than other more deeply traditional monastery incenses. It has a pretty lively vibe to it overall…A really nice, intriguing incense…” Mike McLatchey Olfactory Rescue Service July 7, 2021

Highland ‘Long Stick’ Incense “…There’s some real presence to the stick and it feels like it has multiple layers that interact with the environment you’re burning. All in all I think this one tends towards the upper echelon of Tibetan sticks…” Mike McLatchey Olfactory Rescue Service July 5, 2021

Katok Monastery Formula Incense “…There’s some juniper and/or cedar to the mix and like most Tibetans a light touch of musk as well. So in many ways this is kind of a down-home Tibetan stick…” Mike McLatchey Olfactory Rescue Service July 3, 2021

Khangdru Tibetan Incense “…If you were to pick a Tibetan in the higher third quarter of tiered incenses, I think Khangdru would sit pretty comfortable there.  It manages to get some depth out of what is kind of an airy and light incense, which is no mean feat.” Mike McLatchey Olfactory Rescue Service June 29, 2021

Long Du Relaxing Incense “…unlike An Shen this is a bit more of an noticeable aroma with a nice bit of spice and a little tanginess…” Mike McLatchey Olfactory Rescue Service June 27, 2021

TPN Nectar “…The list of ingredients (I can’t remember if I knew this before) includes musk, sandalwood, borneol and other precious herbs. These three main qualities are definitely all in noticeable quantities here. It also feels there’s a lot of saffron and some hard to define floral elements that add a level to this that really set it apart from most incenses.” Mike McLatchey Olfactory Rescue Service June 25, 2021

An Shen Tranquility “…one of the substrata is an almost clay-like richness and there’s a bit of the tangy in there too…” Mike McLatchey Olfactory Rescue Service June 25, 2021

TPN Calm “TPN Calm is definitely something of a variation of Nectar, but it just takes similar aspects of that scent, dials back to the intensity and embeds the scent in a much woodier base.” Mike McLatchey Olfactory Rescue Service June 25, 2021

Drepung Monastery Incense “…very much a similar incense to both Dirapuk and the Tun-Da Village Master incense, although I might argue that this isn’t quite as aromatic as either one of those…” Mike McLatchey Olfactory Rescue Service June 22, 2021

Tun-Da Village Master Incense “…this incense is a lot woodier than Holy Land and has an unknown herbal content in the mix…” Mike McLatchey Olfactory Rescue Service June 22, 2021

Dzogchen Brilliant Gem Incense “…It does manage to avoid and off notes or harsh qualities which does leave the finished burn fairly smooth…” Mike McLatchey Olfactory Rescue Service June 20, 2021

Samye Monastery Incense “…This is something like the third formulation I’ve personally tried under the Samye Monastery name. It is still a deeply, complex, wonderful, one of a kind incense….” Mike McLatchey Olfactory Rescue Service June 18, 2021

Dirapuk Monastery Special Incense “…The listed ingredients are borneol, cinnamon, red and white sandalwood. I get the borneol right away off of this and it’s part of why this is such an attractive incense because it’s in the foreground. The cinnamon seems to be a bit more buried, but this can always be a judicious choice. I enjoy this the more I burn it….” Mike McLatchey Olfactory Rescue Service June 17, 2021

Lhawang Driden (Drizang Kuencap) Incense “…I think this one is probably my reigning favorite. It is a very deep incense, unquestionably very heavy in high quality juniper content with a stamp of depth only comparable to the finest of Tibetan incenses.” Mike McLatchey Olfactory Rescue Service June 15, 2021

Lost Fragrance of the Mountain Gods “…seems to be a pretty solid entry into this field …” Mike McLatchey Olfactory Rescue Service June 10, 2021

Gang-zi Mani Nunnery Incense “…It also has what I might describe as a velvet smoothness to it, but it also impacts the local atmosphere pretty strongly which hints a bit at a possibly faunal source. And on top, along with the resin, there are hints of the floral as well. All in it all it’s a wonderfully complex incense…” Mike McLatchey Olfactory Rescue Service June 7, 2021

Wara Monastery Incense “… Honestly, the whole scent profile of this is just amazingly complicated and is likely to keep any deep diver busy for months…” Mike McLatchey Olfactory Rescue Service May 26, 2021