My birthday is coming up, but I won’t be asking for cake. I’m a pie guy and always have been. Yet despite my affinity for pies, I’ve never come across a grape pie. Growing up, I saw purple filling in cartoon pies, but those were always filled with blackberries...weren’t they?
Turns out Concord grape pies are actually a thing, baked mostly in western New York and parts of Pennsylvania during harvest season. But in progressive Denver, Grape Pie bakes you.
A heavy indica-leaning hybrid of Cherry Pie and Grape Stomper, Grape Pie offers sweet, doughy flavors similar to Cookies variants, but with a syrupy-grape addition. The strain is gaining steam among home growers and dispensaries in California and Colorado since its introduction a couple of years ago, and is growing in popularity thanks to breeders like the Jungle Boys and Cannarado Genetics. At first glance, I assumed Grape Pie was some purple-strain-crossed with Girl Scout Cookies, but I was intrigued to learn that its parents are Cherry Pie and Grape Stomper. I’ve always been a fan of Cherry Pie’s prolonged high and tart cherry flavor, but Grape Stomper’s sativa-leaning high and tart, acidic flavor have always been hard to figure out, especially during my first few experiences with it, as most grape strains carry heavy body highs.
The Stomper’s cerebral effects didn’t go unnoticed after my first slice of Pie. Writing, cooking and a walk around the neighborhood were all more interesting and entertaining — but there’s no escaping the crash, which is just as sedative as that of Grape Ape, Purple Kush and all the other purple strains that put me in the dirt like an angry hippopotamus.
Grape Pie seeds and an entire line of other strains bred from Grape Pie are sold in Colorado by Cannarado Genetics, but I haven’t seen it in clones yet. Kind Love is one of a few dispensaries selling Grape Pie flower, though, so maybe that will change soon. Frosted Leaf and The Health Center have also carried the strain, while Green Dot Labs sells a version in concentrate form.
Kind Love’s cut is worth the extra money and drive to Glendale; its foxtailing buds are a complex purple, with a heavy dose of trichomes and intense sweet flavor reminiscent of grape soda or even a grape blunt — but don’t burn through this pie with any flavored crust. Enjoy it with an unflavored joint or clean glass, and your lips will smack until you pass out.
Looks: Like a modern version of old-school purple strains, Grape Pie is more visually striking than most of its forefathers. Under magnification, you’ll see deep-violet hues covering much of the leaves and jagged, foxtailing calyxes, as well as limited pistil coverage and a thick coat of trichomes.
Smell: The combination of syrup and sour notes swells in the nostrils to the point of pinching them and almost feeling spicy, but a calming fruity sensation and subtle grainy notes of soil appear to balance it out.
Flavor: That soda-like grape sweetness isn’t as overpowering here as it is in Grape Pie’s aroma, but it dominates the palate nonetheless, with a strong sour kick making it hard to notice other zesty, earthy flavors.
Effects: Although you’ll initially feel euphoric and creative, even high-tolerance users will only experience that for an hour or so, as the crash is inevitable. The strain’s potent THC content and stiff body high make it a good candidate to treat body pain, headaches, glaucoma, sleeping disorders and boring chores around the house — especially if you want to nap afterward.
Home grower’s take: “It was pretty hard to get these from Cannarado at first, but I think they sold more because of the demand. Pretty surprised it’s even hit the dispensaries, honestly. Looks like theirs is a little more purple than what I’ve seen, but that’s not a surprise. Really sticky buds and a ton of resin, so the hash is amazing.”
Is there a strain you’d like to see profiled? Email email@example.com.
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.