• October 27, 2020

Canned Cannabis Comes to Oregon, and it’s a Fun Ride

 Canned Cannabis Comes to Oregon, and it’s a Fun Ride

CBD Soda Magic Number

When many hear “Bend, Oregon,” they think epic skiing, insane snowboarding, and dank craft beers, but Bend is home of another trailblazer, Magic Number. The company claims to be Oregon’s first canned cannabis beverage company, which is what first peaked my interest. 

Their canned cannabis soda drinks contain, “100% all natural ingredients and flash frozen, single strain live resin for the world’s finest, smoothest, most delicious cannabis beverage.” They currently offer cannabis tinctures, ginger beer, and two flavors of cannabis extract sodas in a variety of THC/CBD quantities.  

The Flavors are On Point

It’s 6 pm on a Thursday evening, and we’re still in these pandemic days so I’m at home. After giving the unopened can of one of their Mandarin Lime live resin sodas a few shakes to mix the ingredients, the can opens softly with a “pop” sound like a slightly less carbonated soda would. One of my wine glasses (chosen to maximize my perception of the aromas) fills with a mildly effervescent, hazy, coconut white colored soda. It’s carbonated somewhere between softly sparkling and petillant. It instantly smells less like the citrus notes I expected and more of cannabis extract. There are more lime notes than mandarin. The lime is closer to Kaffir lime leaves or lime zest, though its cannabis backbone partly masks the lime citrus and mandarin aromas.

Wait a minute. I just had the sudden realization that the natural flavors of this beverage may not be mandarin and lime flavored, but in fact ‘mandarin lime’ flavored. A single hybrid species of fruit also known as rangpur, which is a cross between mandarin orange and citron fruits. That might explain why the aromas were different than I expected. Whoa. Either way, it smells relatively tasty and as described.

I take a few requisite can photos for social media and I quickly move to the kitchen to weigh out the can’s contents. My scale says the can contains a full 12 fl oz. I pour all but a couple of ounces of the live resin soda into a mason jar, seal it, and place it into my locked beer fridge away from the rest of the family. The amount remaining in my glass should contain little more than 10 mg of THC.

The more I breathe in the aromas, the more it smells of a cannabis tincture to me. The first sip is clean and smooth. I swoosh it around my mouth, bathing my entire palate and tongue. I draw in a slow whistling breath through the fizz in my mouth so as to get a deeper appreciation for the aromas emanating from this magical elixir. It is bright, mildly sweet – but not in a cloying sort of way. It has a very light texture and feel to one’s mouth, and it has no off-putting characteristics. It isn’t oily or waxy. It isn’t oxidized, bitter, acidic, or metallic. Overall it’s balanced and finishes cleanly. It could either be sipped and savored, or quaffed in its entirety in a handful of gulps. I could see blending this with a spirit like vodka, garnishing with citrus and/or fresh herbs for an extra special craft cocktail libation. A few sips later and my glass is empty. Now to sit back and watch some TV.

The Ride: The Cannabinoids Kick In

For me, the cannabinoids were fast acting. After about 35-40 minutes, I have begun to feel a head high with an increased awareness of the intensity and beauty of bright colors. My eyes are definitely more dilated and mildly more light sensitive. The colors pink, red, yellow and fluorescent green are strikingly beautiful right now. 

The sounds of nature on TV, combined with the wind rustling leaves and the rain outside sound more heavenly – in that earthy sort of way – than usual. My mouth’s hungry, but my belly isn’t. That sounds odd, but the munchy effect is as real with canned cannabinoids as it is with smoked ones. So I saunter to the fridge for some leftover pasta with freshly shredded cheese. 

My mouth isn’t dry, but I’m thirsty and drinking plenty of water. My head feels light. I’ve noticed a slight hesitation with getting words out sometimes. It’s like the words themselves are vibrating. 

My breaths feel deep, wonderful and full. That’s appreciated, because fresh air has been rare on the West Coast of late, as we’ve been devastated by forest fires recently – thus smoke has filled our usually healing air for weeks now. 

The pencil I’m holding feels like it is molding into my index finger, and my general perception is slightly altered. The label indicates 30-90 minutes typically to feel the effects of the cannabinoids, which was pretty spot on. The chronically tight and painful areas of my back are more noticeable now. My attention keeps being drawn to these regions of discomfort. As the dispensary only had the 50 mg THC version in stock, next time, I’ll try a little less than half of the 1:1 THC:CBD 25 mg:25 mg version of this product and see if I feel any relief. 

This naturally flavored, Mandarin Lime Soda is available in a 12 fl oz can. You should pay close attention to the 10/25/50 mg THC strengths printed at the top of the label. It can be easy to mix up the strengths if you’re not watchful, and as my dear grandmother Mum used to say, “We wouldn’t want you to get a wee drop taken (fucked up) my dear.” Mum was always concerned about being responsibly irresponsible with intoxicants.

Realizations from this Soda Pop Journey

My TV speakers really suck, which needs to be resolved ASAP. I’m watching Wholey Moley, the Ninja Warrior of competitive miniature golf, with funnyman Rob Riggle who has me in stitches. Next I’ll probably watch some Archer reruns, but first I settle on the news. 

The local news has a segment with American Sign Language which is both beautiful and amazing to watch while high. But then I feel the need to find some rock concerts on YouTube where the camera is focussed on the person doing the signing. I should probably learn more sign language than just the alphabet. I notice that I’m spending less time on my phone, which I think is a good thing… (these random thoughts persist for some time). 

After about 90 minutes I’m feeling  intensely relaxed, even a little sleepy. This sleepiness fades after about 5 minutes – the transitional period of the high. 

Now I’m feeling more balanced – awake but not wired. Aware but not fixated. Relaxed though not sleepy: The sweet spot for one’s senses and thoughts. There’s a slight awareness of incoordination of kinesthetic senses and proprioceptive perceptions. My motor control – hands, feet and the like – are slightly altered. –  And for some reason my handwriting keeps getting smaller and smaller and smaller. 

Have you ever noticed that pandas always look sad, like they’ve been crying and their mascara is running? I have. It’s sad. 

Time check: 9:45 pm. Yup, I’m still high, but it’s nice and mellow.

That was Fun

Now it’s 10:15 pm and the effects have worn off. Alright, it’s time for a beer. That was fun.

Overall, I’d rate this product as Very Good. It scored well within my expectations of the style parameters for the product. And there were no significant flaws. Just like it says on the label, “Don’t forget to shake well,” especially if you’re sharing a can. This will give the cannabis extract and other natural flavors the opportunity to be equally distributed throughout. 

Benefits: Fast acting, affordable, low calorie, ideal to share (or to get you really fucked up.

Critiques: Pay attention to the THC quantity at the top of the label. You or a friend wouldn’t necessarily want to go for an unexpectedly wild ride by accident, or get too little THC and have a bummer buzz if your tolerance is on par with members of the Wu-Tang Clan. 

Thoughts: Now, how do we get vending machines stocked with cannabis sodas? Which reminds me of one of my favorite buzzed games to play, “What would you want sold in a vending machine?”

Check out the Magic Number, LLC website http://drinkmagicnumber.com for drink recipes. 

Final thought: After writing this article I called Jon at Magic Number and he confirmed that he was not familiar with Rangpur fruit, and that the natural flavors used are indeed mandarin orange and lime, two separate fruits. Who knows? Maybe they can make a Rangpur soda next. Please enjoy responsibly! 

Christopher James

Christopher James

Based in Portland, Oregon, Christopher can be found exploring the Pacific Northwest for the latest craft beers or wild mushrooms. He’s an experienced craft beer & cider judge who’s been homebrewing since the early 1990’s. His friends know him as The King of Paella and the host of PDXbottleshare. Follow along with his shenanigans on Twitter @Portland_Beer

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