Creating the perfect shisha cocktail - Part 1

July 15, 2021

Image of shisha sectioning in a hookah bowl

No, we're not talking about cocktail drinks. Shisha cocktails are when you mix multiple shisha flavours or brands together in a single hookah bowl to create a unique taste, draw, and smell when compared to off-the-shelf packs of shisha. Why would you want to mix different flavours or brands of shisha? Just like a good cocktail beverage can mask the unpleasant taste of alcohol (e.g. a Margarita, Fuzzy Navel or Screwdriver), a well-thought-out shisha cocktail can negate the negative sensations of individual shisha flavours or brands. It is also a great way for shisha smokers to show off their creativity, much like fine-tuning a meal recipe or concocting a new alcoholic cocktail. If you are getting bored of the same old flavours, mixing shisha cocktails is fun and easy to do.

Shisha cocktails: Blending

Blending shisha cocktails involves grabbing multiple shisha flavours or brands and blending them all together prior to packing a bowl. Blending is a great way to make shisha cocktails out of flavours or brands that might be too strong, sweet, tart, harsh or wet on their own. For example, if you've purchased a particular shisha flavour and find it too harsh, instead of throwing it away you could always blend it with a creamy flavour to smooth out the smoking sensation. Similarly if you find a flavour to be too sour or bitter, blend it with a sweet or floral shisha flavour to even out the taste. When a certain shisha brand is too wet and hard to burn, you can blend it with a drier brand to absorb the excess glycerine/molasses/sugar syrup. Some hookah smokers even like to blend herbal shishas like Heaven Leaf with traditional shisha tobacco brands like Al Fakher to either add or reduce the effects of nicotine. That being said, flavours can easily get lost in a blend, and you may have to play around with the composition of flavours a few times before perfecting a specific mix. Don't forget to give the shisha a trim after blending to ensure a uniform cut and consistent smoking session.

Shisha cocktails: Sectioning

Sectioning shisha cocktails is a little bit easier than blending since the mixing is performed directly in the hookah bowl. For sectioning it's best to go for 2-3 different flavours/brands (although 4 can also work, albeit fiddlier). As the name suggests, sectioning involves splitting each shisha flavour/brand into its own section of the hookah bowl. Do this by putting the cut shisha into the bowl one flavour/brand at a time and working the shisha with your fingers into the desired shape. Unlike blending, sectioning will allow the nuances of each flavour/brand to come out at certain stages of the smoking session. This adds great variety to the bowl, but won't mask unwanted tastes or smells like blending does. Cutting the shisha into a uniform length can be a bit more time-consuming when sectioning, as you have to trim each flavour/brand separately.

Shisha cocktails: Stones

Shisha cocktails are not only for leaf-based shisha, you can also mix different flavours of shisha steam stones too. For steam stones, the blending method works best and is easy to perform. Simply pour out the preferred amount of each flavour onto a plate, blend the steam stones together, then pack your hookah bowl. For optimal results, try mixing singular flavours first (e.g. mint steam stones with a fruit flavoured steam stones) so that you're not combining too many flavours at once.

In our next blog article (Creating the perfect shisha cocktail - Part 2) we'll cover some advanced shisha cocktail mixing methods, as well as some handy tips & tricks when mixing shisha flavours.

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