Tag: reviews

We Made Dabs With a $299 Walmart Rosin Press

A few weeks ago, one of our writers noticed something odd. Walmart.com, the online arm of the world’s largest retailer, was selling a rosin press for a measly $299.

For a store that doesn’t seem to carry a single bong, Walmart was surprisingly open about the fact it was hawking a cannabis contraption. The item description called the Rosineer NRN-MV1 a “manual rosin press dab machine” that’s “especially suitable [for] flowers or buds.”

So we did what any cannabis fans with access to a company credit card would do: We bought one.

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When it arrived, Leafly cannabis expert Will Hyde and I met up to give it a spin. Here’s how it went:

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Beyond Aluminum: In Search of the Best Stainless-Steel Grinder

In 1905, a pair of Australian residents were awarded the first US patent for what we now recognize as an “herb grinder.” The invention was designed to be used by tobacco smokers, specifically “to enable plug-tobacco to be disintegrated for pipe-smoking without the use of a common knife.”

Suddenly, instead of rubbing plugs of tobacco between their hands or chopping them up with kitchen knives, smokers could easily grind and store material for later use. Huzzah, the industrial age!

(US Patent and Trademark Office)

The classic grinder design hasn’t changed much in the 102 years since. The vast majority—including leading brands like Santa Cruz Shredder and Space Case—look pretty much like what’s depicted in Patent #795,746. Although somewhere along the line, manufacturers decided that for mass-produced grinders, aluminum was the material of choice.

If you own a grinder—and it’s not plastic or wood—chances are it’s aluminum.

Whether that should bother you is a matter of considerable debate. There’s a longstanding controversy over the safety of aluminum, with more recent studies indicating there’s at least some reason to believe that ingesting the metal may increase the risk of Alzheimer’s disease. (There are conflicting reports, but a 2016 meta-study found that individuals chronically exposed to aluminum were 71% more likely to develop Alzheimers disease.)

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I recognize even basic scientific claims these days are polarizing. I’m not trying to incite mass fear of aluminum grinders. But personally, I didn’t like scraping my grinder clean and finding flecks of a potentially dangerous metal mixed in. I figure I’m inhaling enough crap in my spliff as it is. So when my go-to grinder recently went missing, I went searching for something different.

Here’s what I found. (For all the grinders I’ve tried myself, I’ve included pros and cons.)

Stainless Steel

Aside from glass or ceramic, stainless steel is generally the first choice for food-safe kitchen utensils. Given that, it seemed like a sensible place to start. Unfortunately, however, it turns out hardly anyone makes grinders out of the stuff. Even some products advertised on Amazon as stainless steel turn out to be aluminum or some unknown mystery metal.

But I did find a few:

Cycle Grinder ($139, 4-piece)

(Courtesy of Cycle)

The German-designed Cycle grinder seemed like exactly what I was looking for. It’s basically your standard four-piece grinder but machined entirely from surgical stainless steel.

Unfortunately, it’s damn near impossible to get your hands on—at least for now. For a while the company was accepting pre-orders that were advertised to ship in May. In early July, they posted to Facebook that shipping was “in progress,” but as of mid-August, nobody seemed to have received anything. (The company hasn’t posted to Instagram since December, and its last tweet, on July 14, 2016, says simply, “Cyleeeeeee” [sic].)

I tried getting in touch with the company but didn’t hear anything back. So I moved on.

TL;DR: Great idea, impossible to find.

Lift Innovations ($100, 4-piece)

(Julia Sumpter/Leafly)

The Lift grinder, formerly known as the Clipper, is still mostly aluminum. But the key components—the parts that actually process the cannabis—are stainless steel.

The product has earned breathless reviews. Even before it was released, Green Rush Daily gushed that the grinder was “set to revolutionize the world of cannabis.” That’s an overstatement, but it is one of the few that breaks with ol’ Patent #795,746, ditching teeth that grind for a stainless-steel blade that cuts your cannabis. It’s also customizable, with various sifting discs and mesh screens (all of which are stainless steel) available to adjust grind size and kief collection.

Courtesy of Lift Innovations

I really like this grinder. It’s rather bulky and heavy, but it feels durable and well made. It cut cannabis into a fluffy mixture and handled all sorts of bud with ease. Whereas traditional grinders can sometimes get sticky and clogged, the Lift grinder consistently spun smoothly—which is nice in general but might be especially helpful for folks with arthritis.

My only issue with its operation was that the cutting blade doesn’t always bite into the bud very well unless you really mash it into the grinder. It’s a bit like how ice cubes can bounce around in a blender without being crushed.

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For my purposes, the customization doesn’t matter much. I’m using the medium sifting disc and the coarse kief screen, which have worked fine for spliffs and joints. To switch the pieces, you’ll need to use the included tool, which doubles as an ashtray. (This seemed like a gimmick until I realized that using it as an ashtray kept me from misplacing it.) My request to the company: Put a little divot on the lip of the ashtray so smokers can set down their joints.

Pros:

  • Easy operation
  • Great final grind
  • Customizable
  • Solid, durable construction

Cons:

  • Not entirely stainless steel (body is aluminum)
  • Bulky, heavy, hard to carry in a pocket
  • Lots of parts
  • Occasional “ice-in-blender” problems

TL;DR: This is a top-of-the-line, full-featured grinder that uses some stainless steel parts. It’s a pleasure to use—and it’s what I find myself picking up at the end of the day—but it isn’t quite what I set out to find.

If you’re looking for a similar design for a lower cost and materials don’t matter as much to you, Lincig offers a copycat, all-aluminum version for $60.

Boomers Grinder ($95, 2-piece)

(Julia Sumpter/Leafly)

Keep it simple, stupid? That’s what you get with the Boomers grinder, for better or worse. It’s a two-piece grinder—no kief catcher or section to store your ground cannabis—and it’s 100% stainless steel.

It’s also 100% heavy, weighing in at nearly a pound.

The Boomers grinder works wonders in terms of breaking up bud. It’s been carefully machined and its teeth are sharp as hell, so even dense nugs or small stems don’t stand a chance. The downside, for me at least, is that it’s hard to get the ground flower out without dumping the whole thing—and if I try to reach my fingers in, those sharp teeth poke me.

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It’d be a great tool for folks who grind up a lot of flower, dump it onto a rolling tray, and start rolling. But as someone who rolls a lot on the go, I prefer an easier way to pour cannabis out of a grinder.

Pros:

  • Simple, no-nonsense operation
  • 100% stainless steel
  • Durable and easy to clean
  • Probably functions as a self-defense tool

Cons:

  • Only available as a two-piece grinder
  • Difficult to “pour” cannabis precisely
  • Will probably poke you

TL;DR: Boomers is the only 100% stainless-steel grinder I could find that’s currently on the market. If you’re set on stainless steel and don’t mind a two-piece grinder, get this one.

Other Alternatives

There are a few other aluminum alternatives aside from stainless steel. A handful of manufacturers now offer aluminum grinders that have been coated with other materials, putting a barrier between it and your cannabis. A few others use other metals; I’ve seen zinc and chromium advertised. Here are a few top choices:

SLX 2.0 ($50, 4-piece)

(Courtesy of SLX)

The SLX grinder uses higher-quality aluminum than most (according to a metallurgist’s review) and coats it in what the company describes as a food-safe, FDA-certified ceramic coating that’s free of Teflon, PTFE, “or any other carcinogenic materials.” It’s also apparently nonstick, making it easier to turn and less likely to clog.

While I don’t love that the core is still aluminum, a number of reviewers have said SLX’s ceramic coating is durable and doesn’t scratch or chip even when dropped. And with a nonstick coating, you presumably won’t have to scrape stubborn bits out of the grinder­, which in other grinders can produce little slivers of aluminum.

I haven’t tried an SLX grinder just yet, but it’s next on my list. I’ll update this review once I get my hands on one.

Space Case Titanium ($85, 4-piece medium)

(Courtesy of Space Case)

Space Case is one of the most popular names in grinders, and when I told people I was looking for a non-aluminum one, lots of folks pointed me toward the company’s titanium line. Like SLX, Space Case’s titanium grinders are aluminum that has been coated—in this case, with a titanium compound.

Reviewers online rave about Space Case’s precision engineering, ease of operation, and longevity. But a few reviews I came across complained that the titanium coating chips away over time, exposing the aluminum underneath. That might not bother most people, but it’s not what I was looking for.

TL;DR: It’s a much-loved grinder, but the titanium coating may eventually chip.

Chromium Crusher ($10, 4-piece)

(Courtesy of Amazon)

The first non-aluminum grinder I bought was this one. It claims to be made of a “durable zinc alloy” rather than aluminum, although frankly I don’t know what that means in terms of human health. Trace amounts of zinc are essential for good health, but too much can be harmful.

I got a lot of mileage out of my Chromium Crusher, but it suffers from many of the same flaws other grinders do: It clogs up over time, the lid can stick, and scraping it out shaves off little pieces of metal that can end up contaminating your cannabis. I felt more comfortable using that than an all-aluminum grinder, but I’m happy to have moved on to other alternatives.

Pros:

  • Affordable
  • Durable
  • Familiar operation
  • Not aluminum

Cons:

  • Not a traditionally food-safe material
  • Clogs easily
  • Can leave metal shavings in cannabis

TL;DR: This non-aluminum grinder won’t break the bank, but the benefits over aluminum are limited.

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OK, so here’s the part where I admit I’m just a news editor who likes cannabis—not a hardcore product reviewer. If there’s anything I missed, pleae let me know in the comments or ping me on Twitter.

Back to the grind!

Happy Chews Edibles Will Put a Low-Dose Smile on Your Face

Chocolatey chews are what you typically find when looking for a low-dose infused candy here in Colorado. While that’s fantastic for those who are in the mood for cocoa, the sweet and sour taffy lovers have been left out to dry with a lackluster line of available options.

Seven-Ten Creations, based out of Denver, CO, is an edibles manufacturer that is seeking to change the landscape for the low dosage enthusiast with their new line of THC-infused fruit candies: Happy Chews. Available in 10mg packages with 5mg per chew, Happy Chews offers a fresh new take on the low-dosage edible with their delicious fruit taffy candies. Each package contains two flavors: citrus and mixed berry.

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Happy Chews at a Glance

Happy Chews hash oil-infused edible taffy candies
Dose:
5mg per chew

Price: $5-7 per package

Availability: Colorado

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Happy Chews are infused with hash oil, making them a perfect option for consumers who want a citrus and berry burst of flavor without the aftertaste that other infusions can leave on the palate. The orange citrus chew is tart with a tangerine twist, while the profile on the red mixed berry chew is sweeter with hints of cherry and strawberries.

As far as texture, the chews are reminiscent of a mix between a fluffy taffy and a harder, more enduring chew. The consistency is a happy medium for consumers looking for a good pull without losing a crown in the process. It’s rare to find a 5mg portioned candy as hearty as what Happy Chews offers, as each piece can easily be enjoyed in several bites. 

I took the equivalent of 30 mg (six candies) when I tested them and felt very little in terms of effects. This is a very, very low dose candy, which is a great option for first-time cannabis users who are looking for a very mellow, very low-dose introduction. Effects to a new user at this dose would be subtle and should feel like a soft warming sensation with euphoric undertones.

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The team over at Seven-Ten Creations is on to something with Happy Chews, offering the low dosage consumer a flavor-packed punch in a hearty-sized 10mg portion package. Right now you can find these tasty citrus and mixed berry treats in Denver, Pueblo, Bailey, and Fort Collins, with new flavors and locations coming in the near future.

For those looking for a slightly heavier kick in the THC department, you’ll be pleased to hear that Happy Chews will be releasing a 100mg pack later this year. Keep an eye out for Seven-Ten Creations at your next dispensary visit and you’ll find yourself in the company of one seriously flavorful chew in a delightfully manageable dose.

Product Review: Zkittlez by Redwood Roots

Zkittlez at a Glance

ManufacturerRedwood Roots/Formidable Flowers

Product: 0.5g Zkittlez Pre-Roll

THC content: 21.82%

Lab testing by: SC Labs

Available in: California

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Initial Impressions

For me, one of the coolest parts of being an adult is being able to hot box my car in the parking lot of a movie theater before going to see a Disney movie with my best friend. So that’s exactly what we did the night we went to see Beauty and the Beast. I wanted to bring a strain that would make me feel relaxed without causing drowsiness and allow me to fully appreciate the film’s stunning visuals.

Zkittlez delivered on all counts.

Aroma: This pre-roll smells delicious. When you open the container you get a strong fruity (slightly berry-like) scent and it was definitely worth a second sniff. I handed it to my friend and she smelled it like a fine cigar. Her verdict: “Yum!” It reminded me of what a pre-roll might smell like if you actually left it in a jar of Skittles for a couple hours — not overwhelmingly strong but definitely reminiscent of fruity candy.

Flavor: Grape was the first and most prominent flavor I noticed. There were some fruity notes on the back end and the hit was incredibly smooth, leading to minimal coughing and a pleasant, vaguely citrusy aftertaste.

Effects: Definitely a full body high. The theater had reclining leather seats and as I felt my legs being lifted off the ground, I sank into the chair like it was a big fluffy cloud. I could feel a soothing warmth wash over me as every muscle in my body relaxed into deep comfort. The cerebral effects were definitely a more vivid appreciation of color and beauty, which was great because the movie’s visual effects were spectacular. The surround sound in the theater just added to the immersive experience and I felt extra appreciative of all of the subtle details and nuances that the filmmakers included.

I didn’t find myself getting the munchies; in fact, I didn’t get up the entire time the film was playing and we stayed to the end of the credits.

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Our Verdict

The Zkittlez preroll was the perfect addition to a night at the movie theater. I felt euphoric and giggly, but decidedly able to pay attention to the plot and notice some of the delightful nuances that Disney added to their live-action retelling of the classic story.

Because I have a fairly high tolerance, even at 21% THC this pre-roll couldn’t get me through the entire movie. Luckily, it got me to the place I most wanted to see through a cannabinoid enhanced lens — the Be Our Guest scene. It was everything that I could have hoped for and more. Beautiful colors, flashing lights, dancing cutlery, flying dishes. It was all there and all dazzling when paired with Zkittlez. I dream of one day attending a cannabis-friendly movie theater that pairs strains with various parts of the movie, like a multi-course meal. In the meantime, I’d definitely recommend this Zkittlez preroll to anyone who wants to make life look a little more beautiful.

Product Review: The Nuggy Multi-Tool

Welcome to Leafly’s Product Reviews, where we take a closer look at a cannabis gadget, accessory, or consumable, and give it a test spin. Today we’re trying out the Nuggy multi-tool


The Nuggy at a Glance

The Nuggy multi-tool by NugTools
Manufacturer:
NugTools

Price: $33.00

Features: Multi-tool device that features a knife, LED light, bottle opener, flathead screwdriver, pick, scraper, clip, scissors, tamper, and mini spoon

Includes: Nuggy Tool, decorative box

Pros:

  • Each tool is high quality and incredibly useful, whether you’re rolling, dabbing, vaping, or packing a bowl
  • Perfect for taking on trips so you’re always equipped
  • Helpful online user guide

Cons:

  • A little chunky despite the small size
  • Can’t carry in pockets (bags are fine)
  • Initial difficulty in opening up the tools with their respective metal levers

Perfect for: smokers, dabbers, vapers, on-the-go consumers, camping trips and other travels, people who like convenience, anybody looking to bring out their inner stoner MacGuyver

Cut to the chase:

The Nuggy is a small and incredibly convenient set of tools that’s well worth picking up.

What Is The Nuggy?

The Nuggy in its box
The Nuggy by NugTools is an incredibly handy multi-tool that features 10 items that any level of toker would find useful. The tools packed comfortably into the 0.5-lb, 1” thick Nuggy are:

  • A sharp scraper
  • Flat-ended tamper
  • Roach clip
  • Metal pick
  • Mini-spoon
  • Flathead screwdriver
  • Bottle opener
  • LED light
  • Scissors
  • Knife

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All of those tools are something that I have found myself needing to use for various cannabis situations, whether I was inside my apartment or out and about in the city or outdoors, so having all of them wrapped into one small item was extremely useful. I also noticed that all of tools except for the LED light are made from a sturdy and high-quality stainless steel, so I never felt any potential danger of damaging the Nuggy or my glass and vapes while using it.

While the Nuggy comes in weighing at only half a pound and measuring 2” long, it’s still about 1” thick, making it feel like a bit of a lump in your pocket. If you’re carrying around a bag or purse it’s an absolute breeze to chuck the Nuggy in there and be on your way, but don’t expect a comfortable fit directly in your pockets.

The Nuggy in Action

The Nuggy in Action
While the tools of the Nuggy are sturdy, strong, and easy to use, pulling out the tools can pose a bit of a challenge. In order to release and use a particular tool in the Nuggy, you have to grip the small metal levers attached to each tool (except for the LED light) with either your finger, fingernail, or any other item you want and pull back with a bit more force and effort than you may expect. While this can be a little annoying at times, I understand it’s designed this way for safety purposes, which is fair given the Nuggy’s small size and friendly green color potentially looking attractive to curious children or pets.

Thankfully, despite this minor grievance, the Nuggy does a great job of being a toker’s handy device for any situation. When I wanted to roll a blunt, the knife tool was right there to easily slice my wrap. When I needed to clean out the ashes and Scooby snacks in my bowl before packing a fresh one, out came the pick tool. When I needed to roll a joint, I already had the tamper tool nearby to poke my material down into the paper. I even used the scissors to quickly cut up some herb when my grinder wasn’t around!

I could keep going, but it’s already obvious that the Nuggy comes equipped with a tool for any situation you may find yourself in. This even goes for non-cannabis situations since there’s a freakin’ bottle opener and flathead screwdriver at the ready as well!

Our Verdict

nuggy-verdict
Whether I was assembling my Ikea nightstand, opening a beer, or rolling a joint, the Nuggy had something for me to use. While it can be a bit chunky in your pocket, its overall small size and shape make it very easy to carry in a bag or container. I don’t usually carry around pocket knives or other general multi-tool devices, but I was very surprised at how often I found myself reaching for this helpful little guy, so I would definitely recommend the Nuggy for any level of consumer to always be equipped with essential toker tools, no matter the consumption method.

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The High Score: Zelda, Breath of the Wild Game Review

Title: The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild

Available On: Nintendo Switch and Wii U

Price: $59.99

Product Pairing: Dutchy’s Blackberry Kush (vape pen cartridge) and Gaga Peanut Butter Cups (10mg)

Summary: The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild will trap you for hours on end in one of the most stunning artistic simulations known to modern day gamers. With dreamlike world-building, imaginative character designs, awe-inspiring landscapes, an astounding orchestral soundtrack, and seemingly boundless map (think nine Skyrims), this game is destined to be played with an edible or a big bowl of your favorite strain.

Three, Two, One Blast Off

(Nintendo)(Nintendo)

The feeling of holding Zelda: Breath of the Wild in my hands cannot easily be described. The Zelda franchise is one that I grew up with, playing every major title since A Link to the Past. Over the decades, the widely worshipped Ocarina of Time, Majora’s Mask, The Wind Waker, Twilight Princess, and Skyward Sword would amount to what might just be Nintendo’s magnum opus: Breath of the Wild.

Filling my lungs with bated breath and Dutchy’s Blackberry Kush, the opening cinematics came on. I unwrapped an infused peanut cup while an ethereal voice broke from the darkness: “Wake up, Link.”

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Link awakens—looking like he just took the biggest dab of his life–and emerges from a cave where he’d been cryogenically hibernating for exactly one century, losing all of his memories in the process.

The game wastes no time cutting to its mic-drop moment. A landscape that I can only describe as watercolors over reality breaks out like a sunrise. The expansive view of rolling hills, cloud-cloaked mountains, and trees swaying the breeze will force some sort of audible cry out of its beholder.

Immersion and Atmosphere

zelda-4(Nintendo)

Score: 10/10

Breath of the Wild is easily the most visually stunning game in my collection, second only to a Skyrim modified purely with graphic overhauls and immersion enhancements. However, in an age where many producers aim for digital mimicries of our real world, BOTW sidesteps; it instead pioneers an almost comic-like art style with bright colors and shading steeped in watercolor.

Despite its somewhat cartoonish animation style, there’s no shortage of realistic detail to get lost in. The length of shadows change depending on the sun’s position in the sky; blades of grass sway with the wind’s direction; and clouds in the sky cast shadowed nuances on the ground below, again, depending on the sun’s position. This level of detail is meant for gamers as thoroughly baked as we, my friends.

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In earlier Zelda games, kingdom of Hyrule always had fairly strict geographic boundaries and linear plot lines that gave the world somewhat of a ceiling. But with BOTW, that ceiling just got a whole lot higher. You can haul through the game’s main quest in 30 to 50 hours, but if you’re the type of person to stop and smell the flowers (and I mean every single beautifully designed flower in Hyrule), you may find your play time inching toward the 100-hour mark, maybe more depending on how many edibles you took.

My favorite part of playing this game while high was the early days, the simpler times of leisurely strolling about the low-level regions, collecting apples for my pony and mushrooms for my skewer recipes, and drinking in the multi-toned skies of sunset and sunrise without fear of getting utterly annihilated by a Guardian or Lynel (and here’s a summary of how that will go).

Gameplay 

(Nintendo)(Nintendo)

Score: 8/10

I know I said this game was a destined companion for cannabis, but if your skill does not grow proportionately alongside the game’s difficulty, you will swear and curse your way through multi-button commands and timing-based combat. The fast-paced combat forces you to play your controller like an instrument, hitting the right button at the right time for the right effect. Having tried and failed at every instrument under the sun, you can imagine the colorful profanity that gushes out of me every time I’m faced with the oh-so familiar words: GAME OVER.

A few puffs from my vape pen sharpened my concentration, but too much and I found my brain constantly mixing up buttons, constantly pausing to think, Uhhhhhh what was the fast-command for changing arrows? However, as you master the controls, you will have an absolute heyday launching bomb arrows midair from your paraglider, surfing down mountains on your shield, and leaping off the head of one enemy to jab another.

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Here’s where cannabis really helped me: shrines. Much of the game is comprised of visiting scattered outposts that test different abilities from combat to puzzle-solving. I love the way cannabis allows you to approach problems and puzzles with a creative edge–that can really help if you get stuck.

Although BOTW introduces some challenging gameplay, I’m learning that game overs are no stranger to most players, whether sober or stoned, skilled or stumbling. Still, the eventual difficulty of BOTW may come as a frustration to those who find cooking cakes and paragliding through the Hylian foothills more enjoyable than battling ancient artifacts who count down to your death with timed explosive lasers. 

Characters and Plot

Photo credit: Nintendo(Nintendo)

Score: 10/10

If there’s one thing Legend of Zelda games do best, it’s character design. From hilarious to elegant, strange to epic, adorable to creepy, the inhabitants of Hyrule often look like they walked straight out of someone’s fever dream. The cast of characters served up in Breath of the Wild are just as amazingly colorful, featuring an androgynous Link, cryptic Sheikah monks, the Great Fairy reimagined, and parrots playing the accordion. Stoned or not, these characters will inspire any creative with a penchant for the unusual.

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The plot has yet to fully unfold for me, but so far, the theme of time travel and forgotten pasts has me drawing theories the whole way. Early on in the game, Link must start collecting memories using photographs, traveling near and far to re-live them. It’s a trip, especially after puffing on this Blackberry Kush for hours and hours (…and hours and hours).

In conclusion–if it isn’t already overwhelmingly obvious–Breath of the Wild is a must-have game for, well, really anyone. Having played sober, donked into the galaxies, and everywhere in between, I can say that this game’s highly immersive qualities are wildly enhanced by a good, long-lasting edible. But grab your comfiest chair, because you’ll likely be here about as long as Link spent incubating in his tomb of time before emerging into one of the greatest games introduced to mankind so far.

Product Review: Kurvana Vape Pen Cartridges

Kurvana Cartridges at a Glance

Manufacturer: Kurvana

Product: KPEN Originals: Pineapple Express (Sativa)

Cannabis content: 64.74% THC, 0.19% CBD, 1.17% CBN (Total: 66.1%)

Available in: California

Flavor: Piney, with a strong pineapple flavor on the finish.

Experience: The Pineapple Express is zippy, creative, and focused, but can spike anxiety if that’s a factor for you. I am prone to anxiety so I found myself getting momentarily panicky while puffing on the pen and waiting for a friend to arrive. It subsided pretty quickly though.

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Product: KPEN Infusions: Sunset Tea (Indica)

Cannabis content: 39.73% THC, 19.58% CBD, 0.71% CBN (Total: 60.02%)

Additional ingredients: Lavender blossoms, white cucumber tea, and summer rose (per the company’s website).

Available in: California

Flavor: Sweet, floral, with a bit of tea flavor in the aftertaste.

Experience: This is one I keep in my purse for evening snuggles or if I need help falling asleep. It’s not going to knock you completely into next week, but it is relaxing and just sleepy enough to get the job done when I want to use it for that purpose.

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Initial Impressions

Pros: I love the thoughtful and aesthetically pleasing packaging. Each strain formulation comes in a test tube with different colorful label for each strain and a matching band of color around the cartridge itself so it’s not confusing if you own more than one. There’s also a symbol listed next to the strain name indicating if the strain is a sativa (pyramid), indica (upside down pyramid), or hybrid (circle with one half shaded). These helpful visual cues allow consumers to easily choose the strain and effect they’re looking for. I also appreciate that each test tube contains a strip of paper that features testing results with a breakdown of cannabinoid percentages.

They’re also potent! I let some low-tolerance friends try the Infusions Sunset Tea and even with the 2:1 THC to CBD ratio, they still felt pretty buzzed after only one hit. Everyone enjoyed the experience though, so it was a lovely evening. With my higher tolerance, I felt the effects after only four puffs, and they lasted about 25 minutes. Your mileage may vary.

Cons: I found both the Originals and the Infusions formulations to have a slight flavor that I couldn’t quite place. The website notes that the blends have no glycols or additives, so I’m not sure what is giving them that taste. It’s not bad, it just tastes somewhat artificial. That said, company’s website clearly states, “Our Originals line is all strictly cannabis derived straight from the raw material … [and preserves] the essential components of the raw flower.” I’d be curious to hear if it’s just me, or if others have had similar experiences.

Our Verdict

I enjoyed the Kurvana vape cartridges I tried and I would definitely recommend them to folks looking for potent, tasty vapor. The Infusions line is great for people who don’t really enjoy the taste of cannabis, as there are more flavors options like Passion Fruit, Kool Mint, and Banana Smoothie, many of which taste like Jolly Ranchers. If you prefer your cannabis to taste like cannabis (I’m one of those people), stick with the Originals line.

Product Review: Swerve Confections Snuggle Bites

Product at a Glance

Manufacturer: Swerve Confections

Product: Snuggle Bites

Ingredients: (Organic in most instances:) Coconut: flakes, flour, sugar and oil (medicated with hybrid organic cold water hash), agave syrup, California raw honey, sunflower seeds, milk powder, cacao nibs, pecans, hemp seed, vanilla extract, guar gum, shankhapushpi, kapikachhu, ashwaghanda, maca, beet powder, ginger, food-grade rose geranium and rosewood essential oil, rose petals, Peruvian pink pepper. Garnish: orange peel and chocolate drizzle.

Cannabis content: 200mg bar per package, scored into four 50mg doses. (Also available in low-dose 10mg formulation.)

Available in: California

Initial Impressions

Pros:

  • High quality ingredients. With things like raw honey, maca, cacao nibs, and rose petals listed, and prefaced with “organic where possible,” you can feel confident that Swerve is making deliberate choices about what to include in their products.
  • Resealable packaging allows you to keep your bites from going stale (because you are probably not going to be eating an entire 200mg bar in one sitting).

Cons:

  • Dosage. 50mg is simply too potent for most consumers, especially when they’re trying to mix cannabis with sexy fun times. I would only recommend this concentration to daily consumers with a pretty high tolerance. Luckily, Swerve just rolled out a low dose (10mg) formulation of each of their three bars: Snuggle, Buzz, and Snooze.
  • Perceived value. The brown paper bag-style packaging feels a little cheap. It makes sense in places like San Francisco which I’ve found tend to be more receptive to rustic packaging, but I suspect these are going to be a slightly harder sell in a perceived-value-focused city like Los Angeles.

Our Verdict

There’s a lot to like about Swerve Confections. These thoughtfully created bars blend a hybrid cold water hash from Mendocino with healthy and nutritious ingredients, including Ayurvedic herbs reputed to promote relaxation, clarity, and intimacy. For sex, hybrid cannabis is great for feeling euphoric and connected without any sedative or couch-lock effects. I can’t speak to each individual Ayurvedic herb, but I definitely found the bar as a whole to be highly conducive to intimacy with my partner.

Be careful though, these 50mg bites are not messing around. About an hour after consuming, I felt abnormally perceptive of light and texture in ways that almost seemed psychedelic. I saw colors more vividly and at one point, actually forgot that I was wearing pants. That was odd.

One downside: as my partner pointed out, “they taste like they’re good for you.” The flavor is vaguely fruity-sweet (probably from the ginger and beet), heavily floral from the rose and geranium essential oils, and a bit nutty on the finish from the pecan and sunflower seeds. These aren’t something I’d choose to sit around snacking on, and I’m not crazy about the aftertaste.

Overall though, I enjoyed these edibles. The taste wasn’t my favorite, but the effects were definitely a pleasurable journey. I’d suggest them to anyone looking to make an evening extra special. Consider starting with half (25mg) or less if you have moderate tolerance, or pick up their low dose 10mg bars if you’re just starting out.

Product Review: Magic-Flight Muad-Dib Concentrate Box Kit

Welcome to Leafly’s Product Reviews, where we take a closer look at a cannabis gadget, accessory, or consumable, and give it a test spin. Today we’re trying out the Magic-Flight Muad-Dib Concentrate Box Kit.


The Magic-Flight Muad-Dib at a Glance

The Magic-Flight Muad-Dib at a Glance
Product type:
Portable vaporizer for concentrates

Manufacturer: Magic-Flight

Price: $129.00

Features: no torch needed, simple operation

Includes:

  • Muad-Dib concentrate box
  • Two rechargeable NiMH Glyph batteries with protective caps
  • Battery charger
  • Decorative storage tin
  • 1.5ft black draw whip
  • Loading spoon
  • One replacement screen

Initial Impressions

When I first removed the Magic-Flight Muad-Dib Concentrate Box out of its handy storage tin, I was immediately struck by the unit’s craftsmanship and aesthetic beauty. Despite being small enough to comfortably fit in the palm of your hand, the gold monocle design over the smooth walnut box really makes this vape stand out with its Old World-style design and aesthetic beauty.

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However, I soon realized that the Muad-Dib is really only a “portable” device in the most basic sense of the word. Using the Muad-Dib involves inhaling from an 18” black hose, which makes it much larger in function than just the small and pretty box would imply. Because of the deceptively cumbersome size, I wasn’t able to use the product out on the go like I could with a standard vape pen. The hose makes using the Muad-Dib a simple yet very conspicuous procedure that’s better suited for indoor use or somewhere amongst friends, like camping, picnics, parties, etc.

Muad-Dib’s lack of true portability stands out even more when compared to its sibling, the Launch Box for herbs. The box units are the same size, and even though the Launch Box comes with a short glass tube to inhale from, it’s also designed to be used without the tube, making it ideal to bring almost anywhere. I wasn’t able to do the same with the Muad-Dib, but the concentrate vape does have other positive qualities.

Loading and Operating the Muad-Dib

Loading and Operating the Muad-Dib
To its credit, the loading and operating process for the Muad-Dib is incredibly easy and straightforward. Any level of toker can effortlessly understand how to use this product on the first try due to the way the box works in general. “Turning it on” consists of inserting and pressing down on the included NiMH Glyph battery to heat up the rods that hold the loading plate your concentrate rests on. After that, all there’s left to do is inhale through the whip while keeping the battery pressed and engaged with the box.

When I loaded some concentrate onto the metal plate suspended between the two golden heating rods, I couldn’t help but be a little disappointed at how small the plate actually is. You’re only supposed to use a very small amount of concentrate per hit in order to maximize flavor and vape quality without clogging and spilling into the chamber. This was bittersweet for me because while using small amounts keeps the vaping process simple and clean, the constant reloading of small drops of concentrate to reach the high I wanted was a little tiresome and not as effective as a one-take, solid dab.

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I did like being able to move about my apartment freely while holding and using the box unit and whip; not being tied down to an outlet was a nice convenience. The battery performance is pretty good — a fully charged battery was more than enough for a good amount of long pulls over the course of a day, but switching batteries during extended sessions was a necessary move. Magic-Flight also has a plug-in battery that will allow you to vape as much as you want without having to worry about the battery life, but keep in mind that this option will keep you tethered to an outlet.

Vaping with the Muad-Dib

Vaping with the Muad-Dib is very straightforward — just keep the battery pressed and engaged as you steadily inhale from the attached whip. Don’t expect to blow out a lot of vapor since the Muad-Dib calls for a small amount of concentrate to be placed on the plate each time, so you won’t be taking in that much vapor per hit. Taking long, slow draws allowed me to clear the concentrate I had loaded in about two separate pulls, and I was at least glad to be met with a nice burst of flavor from my concentrate. This may be due more to my higher level of tolerance than anything else, but I needed to constantly reload the concentrate plate in order to get the high I wanted.

If you’re looking for a low to moderate buzz, 1-3 pulls will do the trick, but it will take a bit more work for seasoned tokers. I liked that the length of the whip made for comfortable vaping anywhere around my apartment, and the cool monocle window allowed me to see my concentrate bubble and heat up as I was using the Muad-Dib, but I still felt a little bit let down by the slightly underwhelming vape performance.

Our Verdict

Magic-Flight Muad-Dib
Overall, The Muad-Dib Concentrate Box Kit by Magic-Flight is a beautifully crafted and aesthetically pleasing vaporizer unit that that delivers a slightly underwhelming vape performance for seasoned or heavy cannabis consumers due to their high tolerance levels and the need to constantly reload small amounts of concentrate. That being said, at $129.00 I think the Muad-Dib concentrate vape box could be a great device for light-to-moderate consumers as well as people who may live in enclosed spaces and would want to keep some level of discretion about their use.

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Product Review: Sensi Chews Amoré Medicated Chocolate

I met some folks from Sensi at a Women Grow event in LA and was instantly curious. An aphrodisiac chocolate chew? Would it make me feel aroused, or just less stressed? Would it increase sensation or reduce inhibitions? Here’s the lowdown.

Amoré Medicated Chocolate at a Glance

Manufacturer: Sensi Chew

Product: Amoré – Aphrodisiac Medicated Chocolate Caramel

Ingredients: Sugar, corn syrup, butter, cream, cocoa, vanilla, Tongkat Ali extract, cannabis extract.

Cannabis content: 25mg THC per chew (two chews per package)

Available in: California

Initial Impressions

Pros:

  • I appreciate that the package is resealable. The label doubles as a press-and-seal so if you don’t want to do the full 25 milligrams, you can bite one of the chews in half and save the other half for another time.
  • It tastes really yummy, though I don’t get as much of the caramel taste; the chocolate is more noticeable. There isn’t a strong cannabis taste, either. The consistency is like fudge; it reminds me of a less chewy version of a Tootsie roll.
  • As I felt the effects begin, I could feel a bit of spaceyness behind my eyes. I felt emotionally open and communicative but not unpleasantly chatty. I was able to discern a difference in body sensation after the chew took effect.
  • The high is mellow and balanced. I felt my entire body relax and come online in a pleasant way. I asked my friend to touch my arm and he sort of patted it, and I grinned and said, “no, sexy touching,” and he started dragging his fingertips lightly over my forearm. I felt a difference with the second type of touch. It was intentional and it evoked a stronger reaction in my body, notably enhanced by the Amoré chew.
  • The other active ingredient, aside from cannabis, is Tongkat Ali. This flowering plant from Indonesia has been studied as a natural testosterone booster. I had no way to test my testosterone levels, but I did feel more touch-oriented and magnetized after I enjoyed the Amoré square.
  • I tried the other chew at a different time to test it out for solo play and I found that it helped me relax and enjoy the experience of pleasure rather than getting caught up in how long it was taking me to get to a specific destination. I didn’t feel like it specifically decreased inhibitions (not that I have a ton anyway) but I definitely felt less stressed and more balanced.

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Cons:

  • The packaging feels flimsy and a bit dated. I showed it to my friend Arden and she said, “it looks like something you’d see at a gas station on a shelf next to bottles of Horny Goat Weed.” Perhaps sharper than I would have gone, but she has a point. I also found myself a bit confused – if it works on all bodies (as indicated by the “for him and her” designation on the label) then why does the packaging need to feature a man and woman kissing? I’d love to see more forward-thinking packaging that reflects the quality of the product inside of it.
  • The dosage is potentially too high for new users. I typically suggest that a newbie start with 2.5mg to 5mg total, which would be difficult to manage with this product since it comes in two individual doses of 25mg each.
  • As with any edible product, the onset time and duration will be largely dependent on your metabolism and tolerance. I started to feel the effects after about 50 minutes and noticeable effects lasted for about an hour and a half to two hours. The package suggests that it could last up to six hours, which is entirely possible depending on your specific reaction to the amount of THC you ingest. Dose yourself accordingly.

Our Verdict

I enjoyed this product. I could imagine bringing a two-pack of chews and going on a weekend adventure with a lover, planning to fill at least one of the days with nothing but sensual delights. Have you tried the Amore Sensi Chews? What did you think?