Al Fakher Golden Grape Review

Al Fakher Golden Grape

Shisha Cut: ultra fine, almost like it was ground. BRIGHT screaming red and beyond drippy (looks like blood).
Hookah Type: MYA QT
Duration: 1.5 hour (+/-)
Bowl: MYA
Foil / Screen: foil + windcover
Coal / Amount: 1 Akhla QL (2-3 total per session)
Smoke: thick & puffy
Buzz: none

Smell / Flavor: Smell – Sweet grape or something similar to Grape Bubble Yum. Taste – Realistic grape with slight sweetness and sometimes a faint bitterness (described as the skin taste).

Score: 7.5-8

Video Link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JOFyOUaJnDE

Not quite the Al Fakher standard Grape, this is a more realistic grape taste, with a slight sweetness instead of a candy taste. Thankfully doesn’t suffer the same fate as the standard line grape (no rotten smell/taste) and alittle more pricy than the normal stuff, but a nice break from the overly sweet candy flavors out there.

Note: This stuff (new AF cut) has SO MUCH glycerin in it that it colored the base water. If the water changes color it has dripped ALL THE WAY DOWN the stem. It’s gonna me a MESS to clean. I recommend using a Phunnel type bowl with this stuff.

Al Waha Banana Split Review

Al Waha Banana Split

Shisha Cut: med to course, med brown and drippy. Less stems than normal.
Hookah Type: 27” Syrain
Duration: 1hr 15min to 1hr 30min
Bowl: shallow E bowl
Foil / Screen: HD foil + windcover
Coal / Amount: 3 – 1” Exoticas
Smoke: med to thick
Buzz: typical Al Waha sleepy buzz - Med to HEAVY

Smell / Flavor: Smell – Smelt yummie, a mix of chocolate, strawberry and vanilla. No banana. Taste – Total opposite of the smell: no chocolate, no strawberry, rather cherry with undertones of vanilla and banana based on COLA. So basically a Cherry Cola.

Video Link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LMoUBwze40Y

Rating (1 to 10): 7-7.5

Other than it’s NOT Banana Split, it’s a decent smoke. Alarming if you were expecting the taste to be like the smell, but overall alright. If you like Cherry Cola, I can recommend this flavor, but if you wanted a realistic Banana Split pass this over.

Can be slightly heat sensitive, so watch things.

Al Waha Memories Review

Al Waha Memories

Shisha Cut: med to course, med to dark brown. Drippy.
Hookah Type: 27" Syrian
Duration: 45-55 min
Bowl: mod bowl
Foil / Screen: foil + windcover
Coal / Amount: 2 – 1.5” Stargate
Smoke: Thick
Buzz: typical Al Waha sleepy buzz - Med to HEAVY

Smell / Flavor: Smell – Sweet and fruity, with a light liquorish undertone (and a hint of mint). Taste – Sweet fruity taste with mild anise flavor, but hard to pin-point the actual fruit part. Fellow smoker suggested it might be figs.

Video Link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L5_Hzt1wcuE

Rating (1 to 10): 6-7

Overall nice flavor, although hard to figure out what it was trying to taste like. It’s good, just not my cup o’tea in terms of flavor. One of the stranger smokes I’ve gone thru. One small side note, this flavor does coat the mouth and tongue, not a bad thing – adds to the appeal, just it does.


Sahara Smoke Vortex Bowl Review

Received bowl on Thursday (7/30/08) along with my new AF. I originally purchased this bowl because of wanting a small phunnel. Figured this design, with the mod piece built in, would be interesting to try. Plus the price was lower than most other models (Sahara Smoke for 9.95).

Bowl is larger than most of my normal mod/Egyptian/MYA bowls, but not overly so. My KM bowl is MUCH larger. It's well made and has a sturdy feeling. I did find out the mouth is larger than my Syrian's necks (it fits my Eygptian fine although it's also too big for my QT), but a damp paper-towel wrapped around the existing grommet makes an air-tight seal.

For the first smoke, I based my packing off suggestions from other members. I packed it "loose and fluffy" to just below the hole on the center section with some of the new AF I received. Originally I received thin smoke - partially from not realizing the bowl wasn't making an air-tight seal and the tobacco itself. After 45min I called it quits. The next morning I checked the bowl and found 3/4'ers of the tobacco was unburnt.

Attempt two was much better - taken more hint from members, I overpacked the tobacco, making the level higher (right up to the holes but still far enough down as leave a good gap between the foil).

As to overpacking - I mean not making it "fluffy", just glopping it in and lightly tamping it down. It used slightly more tobacco than before, about what I pack into my Egyptian bowl (or a deeper MYA bowl). Now knowing the mouth issue, I set everything up and this time received a MUCH better smoke. Excellent flavor, great puffy clouds and even after 1.5-2 hours (and 5 coals) I could have added more coals and continued smoking for some time. After a cool down I checked, this time only a 1/3rd of the bowl was unburnt.

Both times, I checked the inside of the stem and found little to no "meltdown" from the bowl (although the bowl did already have the well-worn burn marks). The grommets/paper-towels had no staining/residue either. The base water was also "clear" - colored water normally means the melted juices reached all the way down the stem.

A single layer of Heavy-duty foil was used and that provided good protection, coupled with a windcover to manage heat. (2) 1.25" Exoticas heated the bowl perfectly, but a single Akhla wasn't enough to get decent smoke. A QL broken in half may work or two QL's placed on the edges may work better.

Although future experiments will show how well it can be used with other brands, I do believe most drippier tobaccos will benefit from the bowl.

  1. Good Price - 9.95
  2. Does hold less tobacco than the MED phunnel.
  3. Does help extend the amount of time, flavor and clouding during the smoke session.
  4. Makes burning harder, but doesn't stop. Did help with recovery after overheating and allowed for continuation of smoking without re-pack.
  1. Make be larger than hookah's stem - additional grommets may be needed.
  2. Still uses about 25-30g of tobacco.
  3. May take some experimentation to perfect usage.
  4. Requires more heat to produce good (cloudy) smoke.

This bowl would be a good addition to anyone's collection. So far is works great, providing you are willing to "play around" a bit to figure out what it needed. I do consider this cheaper than purchasing a true phunnel and mod, but since I lack a phunnel (and the brand o'baccy it was designed for) I can't make a true comparison.

I would say if you had the money, pop for the bowl. It's only slightly more pricey than a good clay bowl, so even for some reason you don't enjoy it, you aren't out much money.

VIDEO LINK: (coming soon)