Our attention span is really something to behold. Joe Exotic has been a blast from the past since May, even though Tiger King came about two months ago. Remember how annoying those "woman yells at cat" memes were late last year? They've turned into digital dust, swept under the rug with condescending Willy Wonka and crying Michael Jordan. But there's always that one friend who still screams "Damn, Daniel!" when you show up wearing Vans, because nothing dies on the Internet.
The reel of shitty pop culture was spinning fast when I came across a strain called Chocolate Rain (the name of a cheesy YouTube music video in 2007), but the traumatic trip through the 21st century came to a screeching halt when I saw the weed's genetics and remembered that Chocolate Rain might have more under the hood than I'd initially thought. A hybrid of DJ Short's Cocoa Kush and Chocolope from DNA Genetics, Chocolate Rain is much more than a viral video, carrying such an enticing Dutch heritage that it made a list of ten strains I wanted to see in Denver back in 2017. Looks like I finally got my wish.
My interest in Chocolate Rain originally lay in the genetics, a tapestry of classic Blueberry, Cannalope Haze and Chocolate Thai strains. There's usually not much guessing in how these older cuts of chronic affect me — Blueberry keeps me on a comfortable low tide while Cannalope Haze gives me a snappy, energetic high — but mixing them together makes me uncertain. Hoping for an even-keeled high and focused head, I was excited to jump in the rain, but couldn't shake the possibility of finicky bewilderment or trips to my bedroom and then forgetting why I went in there. Or, even worse, getting the deep baritone voice of Tay Zonday singing "Chocolate Rain" stuck in my head.
But none of that happened. Instead, Chocolate Rain rolled out a velvet carpet for me throughout the rest of the day, making stressful things a lot less stressful in the afternoon and annoying tasks much less annoying at night. That tranquil mindset obviously turned me down a few notches, but far from the point of being glued to the couch. I suddenly found myself able to focus on handy chores and yard work, neither of which had seemed very important last week as protests over national police brutality hit Denver. Still, sometimes you need to focus on the small stuff before going after the big issues, and the tunnel vision provided by Chocolate Rain enabled me to do that for a few hours.
Looks: Like a page from High Times in the early 2000s, Chocolate Rain looks like a classic Haze, with small- and medium-sized coned buds, bright calyxes ranging from lime to wintergreen, and thin, milky trichomes that look like they might prick your fingertips.
Smell: Sweet, bitter and creamy notes teeter on, reminding my nose of chocolate before running into a brick wall of tangy, sour blackberries and lavender, with a skunky Kush back end. The aroma is less complicated than it sounds, and more subdued than pungent. Nothing about it suggests energy is in the future.
Flavor: Tasting a joint of Chocolate Rain is like smelling nugs of it in reverse. Smooth notes of lavender and sour, skunky flavors of grass land first, followed by quieter hints of chocolate, vanilla and dark berries, like a blend of Central American and Ethiopian coffees.
Effects: Classify Chocolate Rain as a smooth operator, granting me focus, curiosity and just enough ice in my veins to become the cool, stupid cucumber I like to be when June weather hits. However, my creative spark was lacking after every session, and my short-term memory was zapped for the week until I finished it off.
Is there a strain you'd like to see profiled? Email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Keep Westword Free... Since we started Westword, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Denver, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Denver with no paywalls.