Noodler's Ottoman Azure

Noodler's Ottoman Azure Review

Ottoman Azure Bottle
 CORRECTION: THE PAPER USED HERE IS CLAIREFONTAINE 90GSM, NOT RHODIA

CORRECTION: THE PAPER USED HERE IS CLAIREFONTAINE 90GSM, NOT RHODIA

Noodler's Ottoman Azure is definitely one of my go-to blue inks. It has incredible color and saturation, and, with a thick nib, brilliant shading from blue to navy. 

On the label of ink is a photo of the Sultan Ahmed Mosque (Also knows as 'The Blue Mosque' due to its interior color). And, like many Noodler's inks, the bottle has its particular style, with the WordArt logos and text, which—albeit not incredible design—gets the point across quite well. The ink comes in the 3 ounce (89 mL) Noodler's bottle, with the ink filled to the brim (watch out when opening it up!). Some people love the Noodler's bottle, and others aren't crazy about it. Personally, I find myself in the former category: it has a wide neck, black coating for storage, and a no-nonsense cubical shape makes it brilliant for organized storage. It also comes with a lot of ink, so you won't get to the bottom for a while. 

However, the name of this ink "Ottoman Azure" is a bit misleading. Azure, according to the Cambridge Dictionary, means "having the bright blue colour of the sky on a clear day." This ink, following that definition, is a quite far off. The color is a rather dark and deep blue, similar to that of Diamine Majestic Blue (and Iroshizuku Asa-gao to a lesser extent). If I could match it to a natural color, it would be much more similar to the Arctic Ocean. It is a deep, incredibly saturated, and (personally) pleasing color. It looks best in stub and medium broad nibs (I love it in a JoWo 1.1 Stub), as in more narrow nibs, the shading is less obvious and the ink becomes more like navy.  

That being said, the ink does have some peculiarities, although unlike some Noodler's inks, it is not bulletproof, waterproof, or anything similar. It does, however, take a very long time to dry—up to 45 second on Clairefontaine 90gsm paper. It also has poor water resistance and smudges easily for about an hour after being on paper. However, it flows very well, and it has incredibly beautiful shading and an equally beautiful color. It is also quite easy to clean from pens and does not take much time to flush. Although, it will stay on skin for a while (as I learned performing the smudge test), so try your best to keep it off of your hands.  

Aside from its picky peculiar qualities, Noodler's Ottoman Azure is a wonderful ink with a spectacular color, which easily makes up for its shortcomings, and I recommend it highly. It retails for $12.50 on Goulet Pens, and for $12.99 on Amazon with Prime Shipping (this is not an affiliate link).

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