Many brewers have tried to suffuse the flavor of marijuana into their beers, but only very few have tried to experiment with actual cannabis extracts.
The most recent to take on the challenge was California-based brewery Lagunitas Brewing Company.
Just last week, the company rolled out SuperCritical, an IPA that is made with marijuana terpenes.
Terpenes is a specific compound produced by marijuana and other plants of the Cannabaceae family which also includes the common hop, a primary flavoring and stability agent in beer that gives it its characteristic bitter flavor.
However, although the experiment successfully produced an authentic marijuana-flavored beer, SuperCritical does not cause a high. The terpenes used in the drink are isolated and refined during cannabis extraction.
Another California-based company CannaCraft provided the terpene. They primarily produce cannabis vape cartridges called AbsoluteXtracts.
AbsoluteXtracts’ marketing VP Kial Long says of the process:
“[Terpenes] are what give our strains their unique flavor and sensory profiles.” For SuperCritical, terpene blends were used to maintain the “Lagunitas-style taste.”
The beer only contains 6.8 percent of alcohol by volume. Those who were able to get a gulp from the limited produce described the taste as “dank” and not very different from all other IPAs except for the greener taste.
For now, Lagunitas only made a single batch: 60 barrels which is equivalent to 120 kegs. If you want to quench your curiosity, you may visit Lagunitas’s website to get a full list of every bar in San Francisco and other parts of California with the limited supply.
Lagunitas’s director of communications Karen Hamilton hinted they may be producing more batches in the future to be distributed within and beyond California.