Here at the dispensary, we are starting to get a taste of what a fully rounded Cannabis market looks like. With legalization back in 2018, dried flower, pre-rolls, & oils got us rolling, and with the 2.0 roll-out now starting to hit full swing, the huge variety of Cannabis products is becoming evident.
The arrival of premium concentrates, such as Live Resin, is ushering in a new era for legal marijuana in Canada. Let's take a look at what Live Resin is, how it is made, and how we can use it.
What Is Live Resin?
This pungent, sticky, golden coloured treat is among the most premium of cannabis concentrates and is valued for its potency and its strong terpene content. Created through a rather complex process starting with the fresh buds and leaves of newly harvested plants, Live Resin when professionally finished, is composed of small golden crystals surrounded by a dense and sticky 'sauce' with a honey-like appearance.
This complex process leaves us with potencies upwards of 60-85% THC, as well as very high terpene levels which have many benefits and are said to intensify the effect of the already lofty levels of THC, as well as other cannabinoids, and create a better all around experience. All in all, this is the caviar of cannabis.
How Live Resin Is Made
The first thing to note is that this process is difficult, costly, and indeed even dangerous. This is not something you should try at home.
Starting by taking freshly harvested cannabis buds and sugar leaves, Live Resin producers then quickly flash freeze the weed using cryogenic freezers. (Think Han Solo in Empire Strikes Back) We're talking temperatures in excess of -180°C!
The key thing to note here is that the bud is not dried and cured as would be usual. This is done to preserve as much of the original flavour, aroma, and terpene content as possible. Much of this is lost during the usual drying and curing of your flower.
Once frozen, the cannabis is then blasted with Butane using lab-grade equipment like tubes and things, and then filtered to remove any remaining plant materials. The resulting mixture is then collected and slightly heated, leaving us with the golden honey-like concentrate known as Live Resin.
One thing to keep an eye out for... the runnier and saucier the Live Resin, the higher the levels of THC and terpenes will be.
How To Use Live Resin
Just as light and air will degrade the quality of your flower, its the same and even more so for Live Resin. You'll want to store your Live Resin in an airtight and lightproof container in a cool spot, like the fridge, to help preserve those wonderful flavours and effects for as long as possible.
When you're ready to consume your Live Resin, while you could run some down your joint, or add a little to your bowl, you won't get the best out of it, and you are much better off using what is known as a Dab Rig.
This piece of glassware, much like a bong, contains a Nail instead of a Bowl. While very similar to a Bowl, this is made of material much more resistant to heat such as titanium, ceramic, or quartz, and it is this Nail which is heated, often with a Butane lighter, to a suitable temperature usually between 150-200°C.
Then, using a Dab Wand (i.e. a fancy stick) grab a dab (hence the term 'dabbing') of your Live Resin and add it to the hot nail. The concentrate should start vaporizing immediately, running through the bong-style water chamber to be cooled and then inhaled.
Make sure you clean your nail after each use, and remember, Live Resin is super potent and you should definitely go low and slow at first!
Live Resin is not cheap, and given the needed lab and equipment, you can perhaps see why. You may want to think of using Live Resin as you would a fine Scotch. It won't be your every day smoke (unless you are quite well off and have the tolerance of a rhino), but it's great to break out on special occasions and savour.
Premium 5 Live Resin tubs are available (most times) at Good Roots Cannabis, your favourite dispensary here in Sherwood Park.
Check out more on our series here:
The Good Roots Gang