About a year ago, when Lyden Henderson took a sip of a nonalcoholic, cannabis-infused beer, he discovered something was amiss: The beverage was chunky — bits of cannabis floated throughout the beer, creating an unpleasant consistency. “It tasted kind of like I was drinking milk that had been sitting in the refrigerator for two or three months,” Henderson says. “It had the worst texture. It was one of the grossest things I had ever tried in my life.”
Just call that negative experience research. Henderson and his colleagues at Outbound Brewing, the nonalcoholic THC- and CBD-infused-beer company he co-founded in 2018, spent more than a year and a half making sure their nonalcoholic cannabis beer wasn’t chunky or lumpy. When the beverage line launched earlier this year, Henderson was sure each 12-ounce bottle maintained a smooth drink infused with 10 mg of THC or 20 mg of CBD. It felt like they’d cracked a code.
Cannabis is notoriously difficult to effectively infuse into beverages. Cannabinoids, the compounds in the cannabis plant, such as tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and cannabidiol (CBD), are fat-soluble and not easily mixed with water. (Another liquid product, tinctures, use alcohol as a base in which to mix cannabinoids, though the consumption experience of placing an eyedropper under your tongue to dispense the solution is a far cry from sipping a drink.) For oral-ingestion purposes, edibles and baked goods have long been the standard, since cannabinoids are easily mixed with fatty butters and oils. While THC is soluble in alcohol, it is illegal to combine alcohol and cannabis in the United States — so water-based drinks prevail.
The number one spot on our list has to go to Artet’s cannabis-infused non-alcoholic drink that brings together cocktail culture and the sociability of cannabis. Every batch of it is made with a blend of seven botanicals and cannabis. Inspired by traditional Italian liqueurs, like Campari and Aperol, Artet’s flavor profile balances floral, herbal, and dry notes that make it perfect for drinking alone on the rocks or for mixing into your favorite cocktails. Each bottle of Artet has fifteen shots of 2.5mg THC and 37.5 mg THC in the entire bottle, making it perfect for cannabis newcomers and longtime users alike to find their perfect pour.
It is a sessionable beverage that will accompany you through your nights of good food, good friends, and good conversations. Besides, Artet uses nanoencapsulation technology, which means that its effects can be felt in just less than 15 minutes, faster than typical edibles, and similar to drinking a glass of wine. Artet is a pioneer in the promising cannabis drinking culture, and this product will surely become a must-have for all bartenders and at-home imbibers.
What are thc and CBD drinks?
THC and CBD drinks are beverages infused with cannabis and are also known as “liquid edibles” or “drinkables.” Beverages infused with THC are psychoactive, which means they will make you feel high, while drinks infused with CBD are intended to help you relax without feeling intoxicated.
Unlike smoking or vaping, which both deliver cannabis effects almost immediately, edibles have to go through your digestive system to take effect. Unfortunately, there’s no way to pinpoint exactly how long it will take for that to occur. According to a study published on the National Center for Biotechnology Information in 2016 on the subject of cannabis edibles, “Weight, metabolism, gender, and eating habits also contribute to how soon and for how long someone will feel intoxicated following oral ingestion.” The study goes on to say that the effects could take between 30 and 90 minutes to occur, but last much longer than the effects of smoking or vaping, with a peak occurring two to four hours after ingestion.
Because edibles affect everyone differently, it’s best to approach with the rule of “start low, go slow.” This is especially important for THC-infused drinks, as drinking too much at once could make you feel sick. There’s a little more flexibility with CBD since feeling high is not a risk, but it’s still important to practice moderation.
Types of THC-infused drinks
From flavored waters, seltzers, coffee, tea, and soda, THC-infused drinks have something for every taste. THC beverages can be mood-specific (sativa, hybrid, or indica) or even taste and smell like your favorite cultivar.
The bottle or can should clearly show the amount of THC milligrams inside the full container. There may also be a label stating how many doses are in the container, which is important to know if you’re a beginner. The industry-recommended single dose of THC is technically 10mg. However, if you’re new to cannabis, 10mg of THC is a lot to consume at once. We recommend a first dose much lower than that — no more than 5mg to start, or even lower if you want to play it very safe (and we recommend always playing it safe).
2020 was truly a breakout year for cannabis beverages. According to a report recently published by Fortune Business Insights, the market is projected to reach over $8 billion by 2027. Here are some of the best-tasting, best-selling brands on the market.
Billing itself as the world’s first low-dose cannabis beverage in a can(n). Cann tonics are comprised of just five natural ingredients (carbonated water, agave, juice, essential oils, and Californian cannabis extract). The beverage provides a lighter, less impactful, and more controlled approach to cannabis consumption (2mg THC & 4mg CBD).
Nectr is a zero-calorie, zero sugar, vegan, uber-refreshing sparkling water that’s for day or night. And at 10mg of THC per bottle, the beverage is a perfect introduction for the canna-curious or regular cannabis user.
3. Matt’s High Soda
Cannabis-Infused Uncle Arnies Iced Tea Lemonade is the stoner version of an Arnold Palmer. Packing a whopping 100mg of THC, the iced tea enough to make you take a whole afternoon away from reality. It sells out fast, but you can check: for a list of dispensaries that sell it.
4. Tomato Jane by Van Doran Brand
A new way to enjoy Bloody Marys with a THC twist. This cannabis-infused tomato juice comes with 10 mg and tastes like the tasty tangy weekend drink minus the vodka.
Infused with 100mg of glorious THC and expertly blended with sweet ‘n tangy fruit juices, S*SHOTS is meant to be hit like a shot. Each bottle contains10 servings for a flavor-explosive, full-body high.
6. Mad Lilly Spritzers
Each beautiful bottle is filled with clean ingredients (all-natural fruit juices and sparkling water with no added sugars or preservatives) and infused with a 1:1 ratio of 5mg THC and 5mg CBD for a perfectly balanced, relaxing experience.
7. Viv & Oak
Viv & Oak is an innovative wine alternative for people who love wine but wants to avoid alcohol. With only 3 grams of sugar and 19 calories per glass, it’s also a lot less fattening.
8. Pabst Blue Ribbon cannabis-infused seltzer
Yes, the same Pabst you know and love now comes with a different kind of buzz. This light and refreshing seltzer is made with California grown cannabis, has only 25 calories, 4 grams of sugar, and zero ingredients that are hard to pronounce. Each 12oz can has 5mg of THC, or as we call it, the right amount to start having a good time.
9. House of Saka
House of Saka was established with a mission to bring the Saka’s cannabis-infused wine tradition into the modern age. Saka WHITE is the color of muted sunlight with mouth-watering aromas of ripe peach, apricot, and toasty oak. With 30 mg of TCH and 6 mg of CBD per bottle (6 mg of THC, and 1mg of CBD per 5oz serving), Saka WHITE delivers a sensual, relaxing high with rapid onset and offset effects for a truly safe, predictable, and social cannabis experience.
Last but not least, Artet is s non-alcoholic and cannabis-infused aperitif. Each batch is a blend of cannabis and eight botanicals that work in harmony to make Artet delicious on the rocks, intriguing when mixed, and always enjoyed in good company. Born out of a backyard BBQ in Los Angeles, Rosemary Jane quickly became a favorite among Artet drinks.