Like an island vacation, smoking tropical weed is easy to enjoy and usually has us feeling better than we did when we arrived. It tastes like the juice bar at a breakfast buffet, feels good between the ears, and leaves me refreshed and reinvigorated. Sometimes things get a little hazy, but that's irrelevant when I'm sunbathing on the beach — or in Denver at a crowded park in mid-February.
Hawaiian, Maui Waui and Pineapple Express are all fine daytime companions in my book, cottonmouth be damned. (Just don't count Pineapple Trainwreck in that mix. Don't even look in a mirror after smoking that one.) Upon finding out that a Colorado grower was selling a line of Hawaii-inspired strains, I had to dabble. My first encounter gave me pause, though.
Wholesale cultivator Host Cannabis Company's line of Honolulu Strange, Honolulu Stranger and Honolulu Strangler sounded more like a three-part true-crime series than a trio of friendly, smoothie-like strains. Not a very breezy experience, I suspected, but the budtender said I had to get past the name, and that the store's current option, Honolulu Strange, fit the daytime description of what I was looking for. A promising waft of sour tropical bubble gum from the jar was enough to make me comfortable with the recommendation.
Turns out Honolulu Strange isn't the dark, mysterious figure I thought it was, and the family tree was readily available from Host Cannabis Company. Having a father called Skwurl Killer doesn't suggest an easy-breezy high, sure, but the parents really aren't that bad. Island Sweet Skunk, a classic and beloved topical sativa, is Honolulu Strange's mother, while Skwurl Killer comes from Goji OG, a relaxing mid-2010s favorite of mine. Neither of those strains are strangers to me, and after smoking Honolulu Strange for two weeks, I hope it stays familiar, too, especially as spring and summer hit.
Looks: Honolulu Strange's cone-shaped buds aren't the wispiest I've seen, but they're very light and tend to look a lot heavier than they actually are. The lime-green color, rusty pistils and trichome coverage could be more from Skwurl Killer's Gogi OG and the White lineage, however.
Smell: Honolulu Strange's aroma has those distinct skunky, earthy and sour cannabis qualities, but it also carries soft hints of bubble gum, sweet notes of custard and a tropical mix that smells like oranges and mangoes. The sweet back end smells like an ambrosia fruit salad, and somehow sticks around longer than the strain's dank, skunky notes.
Flavor: I love Honolulu Strange's smell, but the flavor might be even better, considering how often it pushes through pipe resin or the end of a joint. Kush-like flavors of soil and vanilla with a sour overtone are followed by sweet, custardy flavors that remind me of a ripe banana, with slight hints of sour oranges or pineapples at the end.
Effects: Forget the granola bar before you head outside, and grab the Honolulu Strange, because this puppy provides sustained energy throughout the day. My focus typically returns within fifteen minutes of lighting up, the euphoria and creativity never leave, and the munchies are generally minimal. Outside of a dry mouth and the off chance that my focus stays fuzzy (usually after smoking too much), Honolulu Strange is very light on the side effects.
Where to find it: We've caught Honolulu Strange at Local Product of Colorado, Medicine Man, Nature's Kiss, Serene Wellness, Simply Pure, Sticky Fingerz and Sunrise Solutions, and hope more stores are carrying it. Host Cannabis Company is responsible for the majority of the Honolulu Strange out there right now, while Kush Masters extracts the strain. While the bud structure and trichome coverage are a little lacking, the smell and flavor certainly aren't, and the heady effects are an easy daytime high to handle. Sticky Fingerz grows an in-house version as well, but I've yet to try it.
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