Here is my quick guide to the terms used to describe the sorts of tobacco that people smoke in narghiles -
Moassel: A treacled, unwashed tobacco product that strictly speaking uses only molasses as an agglutinant bond. Flavourings traditionally came in two varieties "black" and "spiced" with the former having the flavour provided by solely the tobacco and molasses while the later used a variety of essences made from naturally occurring herbs and spices. These days moassel is a term that refers to any generic mix of tobacco and some sort of sweet agglutinant like honey or inverted sugar with the flavourings are provided by any additive one can imagine. Anything being made now that would have been recognized as a moassel over 30 years are pretty rare and generally restricted to small, local brands that are hard to find with the exception being some products made by Desi Merli and the Societe Chark du Tabac.
Tobamel: A treacled, unwashed tobacco product that uses strictly speaking uses only honey as an agglutinant bond. Like a moassel it can be either "black" or "spiced". These days tobamels are rare although the Societe Chark du Tabac makes a few on a large scale. The spiced flavours made by other large firms like Hookah-Hookah, Al Waha, Al Fakher etc can't really be deemed a tobamel since they they are heavily washed and processed to the point that no tobacco flavours are left.
Jurak: A fine or very finely ground/cut unwashed tobacco paste that uses molasses as an agglutinant bond whose flavours are provided by the tobacco, molasses and a blend of herbs. Basically juraks are only made by small local brands with the exception of a few firms in India like the Oriental tobacco company and Ahmad Jurak.
Tombac: Whole leaf cured and dried that need to be re-hydrated prior to use.
Last edited by Hajo Flettner; October 6th, 2009 at 02:02 PM.