One of the unexpected side effects of the retail weed industry and the subsequent explosion of concentrate options, is what you might call a fear of change among us older stoners. It’s not like we’re opposed to change of all kinds – we certainly all cheered the evolution of pot from something we once knew as a pile of dust, studded with stems and seeds at the bottom of a shoebox, into these sticky botanical masterpiece buds that are now commonplace. Many of my generation have embraced vaporizer technology, as we’re getting get more health conscious in our advancing years. We’ve known about hash and hash oil for decades, and by now, we’ve probably tried some type of dab.
But the world of concentrates has evolved so quickly in the last few years, that I can’t possibly keep pace. I look at the dabbable options on the shelf today, and a big question mark clouds my face. What do I think about melts, resin, live resin, rosin, terp sauce of the sugar leaf variety vs. the nug run variety, and what is my preference for one over the other? Some of these things seem to have been invented since the last time I was in there a few weeks ago.
Then I try to ask the internet about it, and see all these kids on the Youtube with their fancy glass dab rigs that look like they cost a thousand dollars and would be great for smoking crack, and I think, get off my lawn. I don’t NEED to spend a thousand dollars and fire up a welding torch to get high, you should be able to do it with a lighter, a piece of foil, a Swiss Army knife and any household object. Derrick Bostrom, who used to be in the the very, very stoned Arizona band the Meat Puppets observed recently, “(nowadays) pot is more like a designer drug than the sacrament it was in my day,” and I immediately knew what he was talking about.
Let’s face it. All this progress is making me feel like Dylan’s Mister Jones over here. Old, out of it, a four cornered square.
It’s enough to make me irritated just thinking about it, and fortunately, I have a half a gram of this Mega Cookies Sugar Leaf Terp Sauce from Nameless Genetics handy so I can get high and think about something else.
A keen source told me to try this stuff, and assured me that it works just fine the way I want to use it, despite my lack of proper gear. It’s not that expensive, in the $25 range for half a gram, same as my other favorite things from that shelf, so let’s give it a shot.
I know enough about this stuff to know that Mega Cookies is the weed strain from which this goo was extracted, sounding like a variation of the popular Girl Scout Cookies strain; Terp Sauce is the specific type of extract, and Sugar Leaf has something to do with the extraction process.
This is not a product I have had, precisely, ever in the past. It’s like hash in semi-solid form, a half-gram smear of toothpaste in a jar with tiny crystals dotting the surface. In the absence of a dab rig, I simply use a little screwdriver to scoop out a piece of it, wipe it onto some loose weed, and place it in the bong, always with a screen and a clean, unobstructed stem. Then I just take the hit, approaching slowly with the lighter, taking care to melt the sauce into the bud before burning it. It’s also possible to use a bed of beat ash from the last bonghit, just enough to give the sauce something to melt into, and get a nearly clean hit.
Experienced as a nearly clean hit, it’s an immediate and exhilarating high, strongly on the energetic/ thoughtful side of the coin. Paired with the bud – I was using Bloomfield’s Sour Pina, a sativa-dominant hybrid, for this exercise – it enhanced and deepened what I know that bud will do on its own. The body high is powerful, and residual effects felt for a good three hours after consuming two or three hits. You’ll feel your aura surrounding you like a blanket, a layer of insulation from the world’s cruelties.
Terp sauce, the internet reveals, is a specific type of extract that is NOT exclusive to THC. It is instead intended to extract all the active compounds in the plant – every terpene, every bit of THC-A, all the good stuff. As a result it really does produce a full, three-dimensional physical high that lingers, like the experience of smoking bud but magnified. By contrast, most of the pure THC products I’ve had carry a strong headrush, followed by varying degrees of quality buzzes, but tend to wear off in a hurry, and there aren’t many that could substitute for real weed. The more balanced profile that terp sauce offers is more like what I want from this experience.
Now that I’m relaxed and giddy enough to get over my generational envy or whatever it was that was bugging me at the top of the article, I’m looking it up and finding that you can get a dab rig for something like $20, and a creme brulee torch with safety features for another $20, which has the added benefit if being useful in making my own creme brulee to eat when I’m all high. If I can’t get past my aversion to using a torch to get stoned, I can get an electronic nail in the $200 range, which is steep but not outside the realm of possibility for a long-term investment.
I asked a friend of mine to come over, he had a device he said was “good for wax and that sort of thing”. It turned out not to be glass and torch at all, but a vape pen with a “special chamber” that was supposed to be great for concentrates. To my experience, this was not even as good as my old fashioned bonghits. A handheld vape pen ignition system can’t compare to glass heated by a butane torch. The direct heat of the pen seemed to burn the hits, and it was impossible to get a mind-blowing rip out of it no matter how much we put in the chamber. He, however, was used to the taste and thought the terp sauce was “amazingly smooth” compared to what he was used to. He also agreed with me that the effects were more like “weed plus” than most other concentrates.
But I still feel like I haven’t had a proper hit of it as designed by its makers.
And that’s got me thinking. If I want to use this stuff on the regular, I’m definitely being a bit wasteful with it right now, melting some of it away into the bong stem. I’m still inhaling smoke when I use it, which is not ideal. I can’t really comment on the flavor of the oil, it seems lemony and smooth but I’m getting it mixed with soot. And certainly one drawback to my current method is that is requires having a handy supply of bud in addition to terp sauce. Overall, I’m not getting the full benefit of their artful concentration.
Maybe instead of being such a fuddy duddy about standing up for the old ways, I should get with the times. You crazy kids might just be onto something with this stuff. Let’s see what these designers can do with this designer drug, we users can still treat it like a sacrament and listen to the Meat Puppets.
I’m not sure I can really call this article a review, since I never really experienced the product in the way it was designed to be experienced. My old-fashioned bonghit dabs inevitably cloud my whole perception of the product. Surely no chef would agree to a restaurant review if I insisted on taking a bong hit with every bite of the hamachi crudo. (Any chef that would agree to that, or insist on it, please write to me c/o this fine publication!)
So I’m not going to give this product a Final Rating, and will refrain from writing about any more super concentrates until I can set myself up properly to evaluate them. All I can tell you, this product is real fucking stoney even when being used the wrong way. I think it will do the same thing even if you do it correctly.