Re: How Hookahs, Medwaks, and Tobacco Forever Changed the Middle East!
Ah, Hajo! The man for whom it was written-
“The cure for boredom is curiosity. There is no cure for curiosity.”
Dokha usage is still fairly uncommon outside the U.A.E. Recently (2007 I believe) the U.A.E. cracked down on cigarette sales to minors, which started a small explosion in the dokha business. They are now attempting to control dokha sales to minors, but from what I hear, not very successfully. Always more popular with the younger set, more now so than ever. After all, you can snuff, dump, and pocket a medwakh in about 3 seconds. (Trust me, I know this!) Perfect for clandestine underage use, at school, home, or on the street. Urban usage by far outstrips rural, if only due to availibility issues. Ten years ago, there were perhaps 4 or 5 different 'brands' of dokha, rida and rabsha being the best known. Today I can think of at least 10 off hand. Each region now has it's own brand (sometimes two), although a few of the larger distributors have started to support and supply each other, which has certainly broadened the various brands exposure. Aziz was only available in parts of Dubai for the longest time, but recently I've found it far from there, and cheerfully being sold by the 'competition'. The manufacture of dokha is a very haphazard process at best, which can make it frustrating for anyone trying to provide a consistant product on a larger scale. abu Mohamed, Yousef Redha, and bin Khumeri are the three big boys for manufacture and distribution. Each buys the tobacco leaves and other additives from their own unique sources, and literally have guys sitting in the back of the stores or outside in the shade grinding and pounding their proprietary various blends. There's not much accurate measuring that go's on, nor quality control. I guess it's an art, not a science. Each do carry a unique difference, though, that somehow manages to survive the manufacturing process. Redha's the hottest, abu Mohamed is known for being cool and flavorful, and bin Khumeri has the most consistant product. (The McDonalds of dokha, if you will.)
I haven't forgotten about your dokha video, and will provide when opportunity presents.
Last edited by Bassem; February 11th, 2010 at 09:24 AM.