Dear Stoner: What's the weed version of barrel aging? I love a good aged beer, and wanted to find an equivalent in cannabis.
Dear David: Barrel aging is generally done to add new flavors, increase alcohol content and, in some cases, even ferment sours and wild ales as yeast and bacteria convert sugar into alcohol. In the cannabis world, the closest thing to that would be curing — but unlike booze, curing is done to reach par, not go past it.
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Curing should be done to cannabis flower after the initial drying process, which takes anywhere from five days to two weeks. After that, growers who value their reputations will cure the flower, or place it in resealable containers and burp them to release moisture over the next several weeks. The better you are at curing, the more the cannabis will retain terpenes as it further flushes itself of excessive nutrients, providing a smoother smoke. Proper curing also ensures more favorable cannabinoids, like THC and CBD, as drying buds too quickly will end biosynthesis and reduce the strain’s potency potential.
Again, all growers should be doing this to the best of their abilities, and not present it as something special, like barrel aging. But I’d be remiss if I didn’t tell you about moon rocks: Also known as caviar, moon rocks are buds that have been doused in hash oil, then rolled around in kief. These little space nuggets might be the stiff equivalent of that barrel-aged stout you’re looking for.
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