Why Colorado Tokers Love Sour Pez

Pez dispenser takes on a whole new meaning in Denver.
Pez dispenser takes on a whole new meaning in Denver. Herbert Fuego
I received a lot of Pez dispensers when I was a kid: Bugs Bunny, C-3PO, Scooby-Doo, Pikachu — you name it. While I later found out that my mom just bought the dispensers as an excuse to eat the candy that came with them, that didn’t dissuade me from trying out a strain inspired by Pez. A heavy, relaxing hybrid that tastes like candy sounded good on a recent dispensary visit, so I bought an eighth of Sour Pez, a special that day, without doing much inspection of the strain. The jury’s still out on whether that was a mistake or not.

This form of Pez was bred by La Plata Labs in southern Colorado. La Plata took a male Sour Diesel plant and crossed it with a female Pink Pez, a fruity-smelling indica with a surprisingly zesty taste. Luckily, the parents’ genetics, which carry opposite highs, don’t conflict with each other. Sour Pez’s scent takes after its father’s, with a classic rubbery funk and fruity, herbal undertones — but as with its mom (and mine), that fruit flavor is just so much talk. Hits from joints, clean glass and a vaporizer all carried a peppery, herbal flavor, with notes of Diesel and sugary fruit quietly pulling up the rear.

Despite my gripes with Sour Pez’s smell-taste conflict, its resin production and smell are undeniable — and some of my home-growing friends say it’s worth waiting an extra week or two before harvest for a sweeter flavor profile. The strain’s high is also something to appreciate, especially as the weather gets colder. Heady effects will keep you stimulated and distracted, with a small body high to keep you grounded and warm.

Despite being born in Colorado, Sour Pez is still relatively rare in Denver. You can buy Sour Pez seeds online, or find the strain at Buddy Boy, Frosted Leaf, L’Eagle, Nature’s Kiss and Northern Lights Cannabis Co. Northern Lights carries the most flavorful version, but concentrate forms at Buddy Boy and Nature’s Kiss might be sweeter.

Looks: Bright-green and prickly, Sour Pez has spiky, foxtailed buds covered in trichomes that might even give Gorilla Glue a run for its money. Rust-orange pistils and occasional spots of bright-purple and pink speak to the Pink Pez lineage, but the nugs are a little loose and leafy for an indica.

Smell: Sour Pez carries a sour funk, with sugary-sweet notes and hints of fruit, like tart cherries or strawberries. A heavy push of herbal spice comes in at the end, though, making the flavor hard to predict.

Flavor: Too herbal and spicy for my taste, Sour Pez probably needs at least one extra week to bloom (and a good flush) for its flavor to live up to those Diesel and candy-like expectations that the smell gives off. However, I’ve heard of cuts carrying distinct notes of Diesel, OG and Shock Tarts, so maybe I’ve just been unlucky.

Effects: Sour Pez’s high isn’t debilitating unless overdone. One or two hits can quietly take away stress and induce appetite, while several more will bring on an unfocused head high that, while not good for chores, is great for the couch. Minor pain, headaches, nausea, eating disorders and mental anguish can all be treated by Sour Pez, which is closer to a 50/50 for me.

Home grower’s take: “You can find seeds of these puppies online, and it’s not very hard. Pretty easy to show off to friends, too, because it carries this sweet Diesel smell that appeals to a lot of generations. Classic, but distinct. The resin glands really pop out, too. Great for kief or blasting. Online seed banks will say only 55 or 60 days to bloom, but I’ve been holding on until ten or eleven weeks, and the taste is much better. The yield is pretty good, so the extra time won’t kill you.”

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