Tobacco Asia

Volume 19, Number 5

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28 tobaccoasia / Issue 5, 2015December/January) All photos courtesy of Shishapresso S.A.L. By Thomas Schmid The Shishapresso system revolutionized hookah smoking. But the company behind it doesn't rest on its laurels and has recently introduced several improvements. Shishapresso Continues Innovation Drive Winner of the Golden Leaf awards 2014 – Most Exciting New- comer of the Year The new, silicone-based hookah bowl by Shishapresso Samer Jalloul, co-founder & ceo, Shishapresso When it was first launched in June of 2014, the Shishapresso system created a sensation and completely revolutionized the hookah-smoking experience. Thanks to a proprietary aluminum capsule fitting into a custom-designed ceramic bowl, it became possible for the first time to enjoy a hookah without having to handle sticky shisha tobacco. Lebanon-based Shishapresso S.A.L. has since earned a string of international awards for its invention. But as the saying goes, there is always room for improvement. Accordingly, the compa- ny certainly hasn't rested on its well-deserved lau- rels, but continuously strives to make the Shishap- resso experience better and better. A Re-designed Capsule Even the aluminum capsule – at first glance a seemingly perfect example of creative engineer- ing – has been subjected to further improvements. "We have widened the diameter of the cap- sule's bottom holes [through which tobacco smoke enters the hookah proper] to provide bet- ter draw and thus more smoke for the user," says Shshapresso S.A.L. co-founder and c.e.o., Samer Jalloul. "Using a specialized process, we have also made the tobacco fluffier to ensure that less shak- ing is required before use to break up the tobacco inside [the capsule]," he adds. Besides a tobacco blend, the original version of the sealed capsules contained small agitator balls. When the capsule was shaken, these balls helped loosen up the to- bacco, preparing it for smoking. While these agita- tors still exist in the improved capsules, the shak- ing process has now become much easier. The New, Improved Bowl But perhaps the most important improvement within the Shishapresso system concerns the bowl, as the company launched in November 2015 one made entirely of silicone. It effectively phases out the previous glazed ceramic bowl – which in itself was an improvement over traditional fired-clay bowls at the time. "Ceramic as a material is very sensitive to heat, and therefore its final shape is conditional on the amount of heat it received when it was kiln-fired," Jalloul explains. In other words: Every single ce- ramic bowl naturally came with tiny variations in its diameter and the shape of its opening into which the Shishapresso capsules are placed. These variations – however small – potentially affected the smoking experience, as the system is dependent on a really tight fit of the capsule into the bowl. "As the diameter of the bowl is so important to create an air tight grip around the capsule, the diameter variations in some cases caused air leak- age that would compromise the draw," said Jal-

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