Who wants weed with your bourbon, rum or brandy? Soon, your pot-laden dreams may come true.
Like many people of my generation, I grew up thinking if I smoked weed that my brain would fry like eggs sizzling in bacon grease. Remember that commercial?
The 1987 Public Service Announcement shows a skillet sizzling, an egg cracks and is dropped into the pan. “This is your brain on drugs.” The egg fries, encouraging much of America’s youth to stay away from pot.
Today, we’re living in a different time, where you can openly smoke weed in many cities while you urinate on a street corner. My friend and fellow whiskey author Warren Bobrow is set to release his latest book, Cannabis Cocktails, and Fortuna, California-based Humboldt Distillery just announced its Cannabis sativa-infused (hemp) vodka for $29.99.
This hemp-flavored vodka is a step in what will eventually become marijuana-flavored vodka (if weed is federally legalized).
Is this country ready for weed-infused liquors? The alcohol industry (and likely Taco Bell) is seriously assessing its potential marijuana marriage.
At the main session Bourbon Classic, which I moderated, I asked the distiller panelists if they could foresee a marijuana-infused bourbon or marijuana-flavored whiskey. After we got the laughs out of the way, one of the panelists said the higher ups are likely asking these questions right now.
We at least know they’re tracking it.
Earlier this year, the Distilled Industry Spirits Council’s David Ozgo said spirits sales were up in regions where pot was legal, indicating the marijuana smokers like to drink a cocktail or two.
In Washington, where pot is legal, the state government combined its liquor and marijuana regulators for the Liquor and Cannabis Board. Should the government combine the two industries under one regulatory umbrella? This is a question that should be taken very seriously. In Canada, liquor stores are seeking the right to sell marijuana. Much of the U.S. is still dry and many people don’t drink or smoke pot; and I do not think our country is prepared to see packaged marijuana next to Jack Daniel’s. Of course, lawmakers see the potential tax benefits, and they’ll likely invent new taxes upwards of 30% per purchase when you buy alcohol and marijuana at the same time.
The big money will lure lawmakers to federalize marijuana. It will happen, and we’ll see the alcohol industry bring cannabis into their profit fold.
We’ll not only have marijuana-flavored vodka, but you’ll have your choice of bourbon barrel-aged Alabama kush or beach dried Golden Jamaican Marijuana. Want a bourbon old fashioned made with the cannabis simple syrup? It’s the world we live in, where my fried egg youth is slowly being flipped.
Fred Minnick wrote Bourbon Curious.