The Pop Up Cannabis Dining Phenomenon: How Weed Is Infused With Fine Dining
If you thought eating weed was all about college kids baking their green into packet brownie mixes, think again. While you’ll still find students all over the country ruining great herb with terribly bland brownies, there is also an explosion of marijuana edibles that is geared towards more discerning tastes.
Every election cycle, new states are approving weed either for medicinal or recreational use. While most laws still require the herb to be consumed in the home rather than in public, more progressive regulations are resulting in more and more people openly experimenting with recipes that can incorporate marijuana in all kinds of foods to suit all tastes.
How Is Weed Infused Into Fine-Dining Food?
The most common way to use marijuana in cooking is to first infuse it with butter or oil which is then used in your weed edible. The nature of the weed-infused butters and oils means that they’re very practical for baked goods such as cakes, brownies and cookies. Some top quality chefs, however, have begun creating dishes that the average coed would never consider making with their pot. Pizza, sushi, soup, pasta and even drinks can now be consumed with some top quality bud - and in settings that resemble the finest of fine dining establishments.
Like a Michelin star restaurant creating a degustation menu to pair fine wine with certain dishes, top chefs are finding combinations of food and marijuana strains that compliment each other. Unlike when you were eating your weed brownies in your dorm room, these dining experiences aren’t about getting baked; they’re about the subtle high and the appreciation of the food and the accompanying herb. You don’t drink the wine at a fine dining establishment to get drunk, but that doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy the buzz.
Are Pop Up Marijuana Restaurants Legal?
For the moment, with most laws allowing for only personal use in the home, these experiences are still relatively rare. They are, however increasing, with several cities and states experimenting with short-term or temporary licenses to allow people to bring their own weed to be cooked into some marijuana edibles.
Colorado, for example, which made weed legal back in 2014, has recently started offering short-term licenses to allow people to consume their own weed in a public venue. These are generally offered as either inside licenses, for food or vaping, or outside for actually smoking.
With many localities having bans on smoking (including tobacco) inside public venues, it is thought that if legal use does expand to allow people to consume their pot in restaurants and cafes, edibles will be the primary means of consumption. As more states begin to legalize weed, it is expected that the regulations will become more and more liberal, allowing for more opportunities to consume edibles in a restaurant environment.
As of right now, the best that most of us can do is keep an eye out for pop-up marijuana restaurants and other events which manage to obtain temporary licenses to sell weed edibles that can be consumed on premises. In some cases, there are additional restrictions, such as requiring diners to have a medical marijuana card or being part of a certain club.
It is clear that as weed goes more mainstream, the options to consume good quality green in different ways will only increase and for those of us that have been introduced to the joys of fine marijuana dining, that is great news.