Experience the Signature House Special at Darband Bar & Lounge

The House Special at Darband

A hookah, also known as a water pipe, features a bowl for holding tobacco, a pipe, and one or more hoses for inhaling the smoke. Available in various sizes and styles, hookahs are popular worldwide for their leisurely smoking experience. Many enthusiasts argue that smoking from a hookah offers a more relaxed alternative to cigarettes. However, this raises the question: Are there any drawbacks to this method compared to cigarette smoking? Intrigued by these considerations, I decided to explore this further by trying the House Special at Darband, a well-known hookah lounge.

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IMG_4817 Experience the Signature House Special at Darband Bar & Lounge

What is a Hookah?

The hookah is setup in the configuration shown above and below. The vase is filled with water to submerge the down stem. The bowl is then covered with a perforated foil sheet or metal screen. The hot coals are placed on top of the foil sheet or metal screen, which causes the tobacco in the bowl to heat up and smoke.

How Does it Work?

Put the disposable mouth piece into your mouth and exhale from your belly, hold it in for a count or two and blow the smoke out. Repeat. If the taste changes, blow out the bowl (or pineapple, see below) and turn the coals over.

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The House Special at Darband Hookah Lounge

I came here to relax. Maybe enjoy a glass of wine and smoke some apple shisha. However, Schaeffer explained they only had double apple and it tasted more like licorice. I really hate licorice. So I settled on the house special. I have no idea what it is. There is some fruit, some mint. He says its popular with the ladies. I like it, so I don’t care, it goes well with my coca cola.

Darband Hookah on Anderson Mill Road is a relaxed environment. Soft Middle Eastern music plays from the empty disco booth. There are red dancing strobe lights and red light bulbs in the chandeliers overhead. The sofas are worn, burned from errant embers. The young people in here are regulars. I like it here, I feel comfortable– kicking off my flip flops and pitting them up on the sofa. Everyone else is enjoying each others company. The scenic air lingers above my head. I listen to the intermittent sounds of bubbling, tongs hitting metal and a cough or two.

Its also a b.y.o.b until next week when they get their liquor license. My Coke is cols, so I’m good.

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Understanding the Drawbacks of Hookah Smoking

The Pros & Cons

The Mayo Clinic warns that hookah smoking poses many of the same health risks as cigarette smoking. Like cigarette smokers, hookah users face increased risks of lung cancer, mouth cancer, heart disease, and emphysema.

Hookah is also known as shisha, narghile, waterpipe, or hubble bubble, the latter due to the bubbling sound it makes during use. It involves smoking tobacco, which is sometimes mixed with fruit or molasses sugar, through a bowl connected to a hose or tube ending in a mouthpiece. While it may appear to be a more relaxed alternative to cigarettes, hookah smoking carries significant drawbacks. The smoke contains harmful substances like nicotine, tar, and other chemicals that can lead to serious health issues.

Additionally, a typical hookah session lasts much longer than smoking a cigarette, which means prolonged exposure to the smoke. There’s also a higher risk of transmitting infectious diseases, especially when sharing a hookah, as mouthpieces can easily transfer germs if not sanitized. Furthermore, setting up and maintaining a hookah is more time-consuming and cumbersome compared to the simplicity of lighting a cigarette.

The average shisha-smoking session lasts an hour and research has shown that in this time you can inhale the same amount of smoke as from more than 100 cigarettes. Some people mistakenly think that shisha smoking is not addictive because the water used in the pipe can absorb nicotine. I’ve smoked a hookah 3-4 times in my life and feel that I can take it or leave it.

He says tonight, Sunday night is a good time to come chill and watch football. Thursday, Friday and Saturdays are lively– more of a party atmosphere.

What is the History of Hookah?

The Hookah’s origin traces back to India. It surfaced in the form we know it as today around the 15th Century when Indian Glass manufacturing began as a result of the exporting of glass to India through the British East India Company.

I don’t smoke cigarettes or anything else. But I do like the feeling, aroma and sensations of shisha smoke. It’s relaxing to me.

Most people smoke hookah at home or a hookah lounge/ bar. The hookah lounge is an establishment where patrons share shisha from a communal hookah (with your own tube) placed at each table or a bar. It’s Sunday night, now most of them are enjoying the Denver vs. Bills game.

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Who Smokes A Hookah?

Schaeffer, my server, checked on me a couple of times, turning my coals to make sure I was getting the optimal smoke from my hookah. He says that most people who come to the lounge are of Middle Eastern descent. Like him, they also come to socialize with their friends. Now he works here.

Hookah Flavors

The combination of tobacco, sweetener, and fruit used in hookah smoking creates a much more pleasant scent than the rather smelly cigarette counterparts. Some of the most  popular flavors are apple, mango, pineapple, pear, mints and combinations like kiwi strawberry.

Contrary to some people’s understanding, hookah smoking is not synonymous with marijuana smoking. The only drug in the hookah is the wacky tobacky.

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In Conclusion

Darband Bar & Lounge is your spot in Austin, TX, for great drinks and hookah. The welcoming vibe will draw you in, and you’ll want to stay for our cocktails, mixed just right by our bartenders at prices that make every hour feel like happy hour. Our menu has something for everyone, from tasty cocktails to delicious food. It’s the perfect place for a girls’ night, a dinner date, or to enjoy live music.

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    1. duffelbagspouse

      Whats interesting about hookah is neither am I. I hate cigarette smoke with a passion but I can enjoy the aroma of shisha.

  1. 1stopmom

    Thank you for sharing all the information abbout Hookahs. I never really understood how it all worked. Even though I will probably never try it, I enjoyed reading your post. I like learning about new things.

  2. Ronnie

    We love smoking the hookah, but then again, we’re originally from the Middle East so it’s in the culture. 🙂 I really push for us to not do it too often, as it is dangerous to do so. Still, it’s a great social activity from time to time.

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