Why Colorado Tokers Love Denver Maple

Cozy up by the fire with a stack of pancakes and some Denver Maple.
Cozy up by the fire with a stack of pancakes and some Denver Maple. Herbert Fuego
It doesn’t really matter what part of the world a strain comes from, but all things being equal, I’ll choose the local bud. My lungs swell with pride whenever I inhale a hit of Commerce City Kush or Colorado Cough, so my choice was easy when I saw Denver Maple on the menu at Ballpark Holistic Dispensary.

Taking home third place for Best Indica at the 2014 High Times Colorado Cannabis Cup, Denver Maple is one of Ballpark Holistic’s flagship strains — and one of its most expensive. While this local delicacy won’t rival the sap of Vermont anytime soon, it’s still a fitting Denver take, sort of like Moonshine Haze from Rare Dankness, another Denver breeder.

Denver Maple’s looks won’t move you — if it didn’t have a reputation, I probably wouldn’t have picked it from the lineup — but it stands out in every other aspect. Ballpark Holistic won’t share its genetics with customers or other dispensaries, but the smell, flavor and different tones of light and dark greens make me think that Denver Maple is a rare OG Kush phenotype, or perhaps its lineage is heavily OG. Piney, earthy notes with a kush sweetness are clear OG traits, and Ballpark Holistic was able to pull out an incredible spice that’s perfect for the holidays. You might have to pinch a bud and focus, but zesty scents and flavors of cinnamon and cloves are undeniable — a delicious match with a winter warmer or Christmas ale.

Since Ballpark Holistic is the only dispensary in the country carrying Denver Maple, the strain has the rare designation of being incomparable — and its price reflects that. Eighths of Denver Maple run $45 before tax, but its sharp kush flavors and sweet, zesty overtones make this Mile High delicacy worth a try.

Despite the contrast of greens and a sticky coat of trichomes, Denver Maple’s buds wouldn’t impress a shallow stoner. Small, open-bud structure and fluffy calyxes look more like a limp sativa than an award-winning indica — but that’ll just make it all the more fun when you surprise your friends.

More like maple leaves than maple syrup, the strain’s smell furthers my theory that OG dominates the genetics. While there’s a light sugar overtone and subtle cinnamon and clove spice at the end, the stronger aromas are pine, rubber and soil.

Denver Maple’s flavor isn’t as potent as its smell, but it’s definitely more complex. Sweet, piney flavors of kush and a unique zest on the end make this a lip-smacking toke.

Although it’s an indica, Denver Maple’s high is much thinner than molasses, with uplifting, creative effects at the beginning. The calm, elated effects can be deceiving, though, so don’t spark three bowls in a row, or paranoia can set in. This daytime indica is good for pain and stress, relieving tensions with virtually no crash.

Commercial grower’s take:
“No clue on what the ‘real’ genetics are, but it’s a creation we really envy in our grow. Anytime you’re able to take an OG, or at least something like it, and create something totally awesome and different from what other people are doing, that’s really cool. A friend of mine made a point — and I think it’s a good one — that the way it looks and its high, and that rubbery flavor, might mean it has more of a sativa influence than you’d think. And I don’t think Ballpark advertises it as this heavy, knockout indica — that’s just what we tend to think when we don’t know much about it.”

Is there a strain you’d like to see profiled? Email [email protected]

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Herbert Fuego is the resident stoner at Westword, ready to answer all your marijuana questions.
Contact: Herbert Fuego