Cannabis culture is thriving with new and innovative ideas for infused or elevated recipes being passed around as much as the pipe. Cannabis infused chef-hosted events, where chefs prepare a dosed full-course meal to willing participants have been making headlines in mainstream media like Vogue. The idea of “weed weddings” is being caught on to in legal states and countries, the cannabis-mom parties are starting to be more present on social media, and elevated cocktails are being pushed as the new way to consume your cannabis.
While we are loving the expanding acceptance of cannabis culture into mainstream society, we also embrace our role as a publication to talk about the issues around safe consumption. We believe that when cannabis is dosed well, consumed responsibly, and most importantly used on its own without the interference of other substances, it can provide a transcendental, and healthy experience for the user.
If you’ve been in a legal state, you may see cannabis cocktails being advertised. Cannabis infused vodka, beer, tequila, rum, wine, you name it, are hitting the menus of some restaurants and DIY sites for the elevated experience. Infused simple syrup, sodas, and accouterments bring the alcohol value of a cocktail to a whole new level when THC is added. The cannabis cocktail blends both the expertise of a bartender and a budtender to get that perfect balance that brings a bit more buzz to your booze.
Are cannabis cocktails always the best mix?
As the idea of cannabis cocktails gains more ground, the chatter surrounding the safe consumption of cannabis with alcohol grows as well. Here’s the thing with cannabis cocktails: alcohol and THC affect your body in very different ways, especially when cannabis is orally consumed.
Generally, the effects of alcohol hit you right away. There’s no sense of “creeping” with alcohol as it immediately hits your bloodstream giving you the “drunk” effect the more you consume.
When you consume cannabis orally, the cannabinoids, including the THC is absorbed through your gastrointestinal (GI) system, a slower absorption process than through your bloodstream.
Have you ever had a few drinks with your friends at home and decided to go for a puff? You’ll likely notice that suddenly, you’re not only elevated, but your feelings of alcohol-induced intoxication have increased is as well. For some, alcohol and THC can be a very unpleasant mix due to the way each substance interacts with your body, with each substance increasing the effects of the other.
Alcohol is also a powerful solvent, guaranteed to automatically increase the potency of any cannabis you add to your cocktail, which could amplify the power of your cannabis’ creep up.
Cannabis Cocktails with Caution and Care
For some, the idea of combining cannabis and alcohol sounds like the ultimate mix of stimulants for a good party. For others, it could be a combination that sends someone on a bad trip or dooms them to a night with the porcelain throne. The key is being intentional, cautious by consuming your cannabis cocktail with care.
Here are a few tips to ensure you get just the right balance with your cannabis-infused imbibements:
Opt for CBD Rich Strains
Sometimes the key to a cannabis cocktail isn’t the THC at all, but rather embracing the powerful effects of CBD, from its anti-anxiety, anti-inflammatory, relaxation properties. Along with the right alcohol, a CBD rich infusion could give you just the right amount of “chill” you’re looking for when relaxing with a cannabis cocktail.
Remember that if you infuse a whole bottle of vodka with too much of your cannabis flower, or too many drops of your cannabis tincture, you may be in for more of a buzz than you bargained for. Some recipes will call for 1-1.5 oz of cannabis oil, or 6 to 8 grams of hash to a bottle of alcohol, for instance in this recipe for cannabis-infused liquor. Naturally, the more cannabis you add, the more potent it will be with alcohol being a solvent. Start small if you’re trying a cannabis-infused cocktail for the first time.
Prepare for the Creep
Give yourself ample time for your cannabis effects to catch up to how the alcohol has affected you. Don’t slam a bunch of cocktails and then be off; you could find yourself uncomfortably high in a place where you’d rather not be in such a state. Rather, stay in a safe place until you can fully assess the effects of the THC as it’s combined with the alcohol.
“Ditch the booze, instead infuse”
If mixing cannabis and booze in the same glass is too much of a tall order to get your mind around, as Merry Jane puts it, “ditch the booze, instead infuse”. Cannabis mocktails are gaining just as much popularity, with dosing cannabis being more straightforward when not interacting with any other substances in the body. Check out the mouth-watering and refreshing virgin cannabis cocktail recipes on Merry Jane that includes Lavender Lemonade Haze.
Sip and Relax
If considering cannabis cocktails, be sure you’re fully aware of the doses and alcohol percentage of what you’re consuming, and pace yourself to avoid an unpleasant creep of cannabis once you’re feeling a little tipsy. Start slow, and enjoy feeling the effects come on before consuming more. If you’re not into the idea of the total mix, enjoy a cannabis mocktail to enjoy feeling the effects of your infusion come on slowly. Check in with yourself to ensure you’re only continuing to enjoy your experience with cannabis cocktails, and of course, ensure you have adequate and safe transportation…. and munchies for later. You’ll likely want them.
Cheers from the elevated team at Oov!