Featuring: La Familia Agua Fresa and Good Stuff Beverages Reviews and Chef Jenn
This week I did an Instagram Live with Chef Jenn Felmley, a culinary instructor and personal cannabis chef that makes custom, delicious, infused meals for her clients. She was also a contestant on Chopped 420. For our Happy Hour session, she created a decadent mocktail inspired by those Strawberry Shortcake ice cream bars using Producto De Los Angeles’s Agua De Flor, Fresa.
I’m not a chef; once a waitress but never made it to bartending. However, I can still mix a few things for a little mocktail. I picked out one of my go-to favorites, Good Stuff Beverage, Strawberry Hibiscus, to sip on while I chatted with her about our love for cannabis, infused beverages, and the ins and outs of working in the industry.
What is a cannabis beverage?
Cannabinoids like THC and CBD are not water soluble (hydrophobic), so they must undergo a nano emulsification process to break down and blend well with liquid. There's a lot of science behind how that happens. As a consumer, the most important fact is that this means the cannabinoids process in your system faster. That’s right. Instead of waiting 30 minutes to two hours for the edible to hit you, beverages have an onset time of 15-30 minutes.
The rapid onset time makes them great to enjoy while sitting in a group and enjoying a few hours of socializing. Some brands sell their drinks in packs or as a mixer, making them great to share.
Beverages Reviewed: Agua De Flor, Fresa & Good Stuff Beverage, Strawberry Hibiscus
Although I couldn’t join Chef Jenn and try her scrumptious Strawberry Shortcake-inspired mocktail, I have tried the product before. So I’ll give a quick review of both products we enjoyed as they come on their own.
Agua De Flor, Fresca: 8/10 Simple, but all necessary information is clearly listed. It’s a tall 16 fl oz glass.
Good Stuff, Strawberry Hibiscus: 8/10 They just changed their packaging from glass bottles to plastic, and although I understand the logistics of it, it's such a bummer. I loved their original packaging. The new bottle has the same logos, a 12 fl oz bottle, and product information clearly listed.
Touch & Texture: I’ll base this on the texture of the liquid
Agua De Flor, Fresca: 8/10 It isn’t thick and syrupy but tastes like it. I needed to mix this with something.
Good Stuff, Strawberry Hibiscus: 10/10 Classic refreshing beverage texture. I enjoy this as is, most often.
Smell: I realize the odor of a beverage is weird to judge, but it’s also not. So I’ll judge it.
Agua De Flor, Fresca: 10/10 This smells like a classic old-school fruit punch.
Good Stuff, Strawberry Hibiscus: 7/10 As much as I love to drink this, smelling it was weird. Maybe it’s the plastic bottle? I couldn’t quite put my finger on it.
Agua De Flor, Fresca: 7/10 It’s a hard beverage to enjoy. It’s super sweet, and I get more fruit punch flavors rather than fresa. It’s good but needs a companion drink.
Good Stuff, Strawberry Hibiscus: 10/10 This beverage is so freaking delicious. As is, it’s light, refreshing, and heavy on the hibiscus flavors.
Agua De Flor, Fresca: 10/10 I love the rapid onset times. It hits me nice and heavy in the eyes, and it’s super mellow in the body. It’s categorized as a hybrid but feels heavier on the indica side.
Good Stuff, Strawberry Hibiscus: 10/10 Again, I love the rapid onset. It’s nice and heavy in the eyes and body. This one is an indica variation.
Agua De Flor, Fresca: 9/10 You can add this drink to lots of other beverages for a mocktail. For a happy hour, it’s really a perfect beverage to feature in mocktails and share with friends, especially if you keep everyone at a comfy dosage level.
Good Stuff, Strawberry Hibiscus: 10/10 This is my favorite drink for sexy time. Especially because I can keep it bedside as a fresher for my partner and me to keep the vibes going, but it’s also amazing to enjoy in any other social or intimate setting.
Agua De Flor, Fresca: 8/10 $20 (pre-tax) for 100 mg. The price point is average, but since I wasn’t absolutely obsessed, I’d only buy it if I knew exactly what to mix it with.
Good Stuff, Strawberry Hibiscus: 9/10 $20 (pre-tax) for 100mg. Again, an average price, and it’s one of my top 5 favorite beverages, so if I can, I treat myself to it.
Agua De Flor, Fresca: 8.6/10 Overall, enjoyable and an excellent mixer for cannabis mocktails.
Good Stuff, Strawberry Hibiscus: 9.1/10 Overall, still one of my go-to cannabis beverages. Delicious and refreshing as is.
How to mix up your cannabis beverages
The greatest parts about cannabis beverages are their rapid onset time and their versatility in blending them into other drinks. So how does one start mixing their own cannabis beverages?
To start, pick what you’d like to enjoy. Are you feeling like having refreshing margarita flavors? A more simple spritzer vibe? Or maybe a decadent milkshake-style drink like Chef Jenn? You can always find a classic cocktail recipe online and substitute the alcohol for the cannabis beverage. Or you can create your own recipes like Chef and I did.
Next, find your cannabis beverage. The beautiful part of the California cannabis industry is the plethora of drinkable flavor options – lemonades, sodas, and even aqua frescas. Choose which one matches the flavor profile of your desired drink. Also, think of other edibles that might make a nice garnish if you want to get fancy. (I’m picturing someone topping a fruity mocktail off with some sour edibles, mmm)
Once you decide how much you want to dose the drink, you just have to mix the ingredients up, garnish and enjoy!
I kept my drink super simple. I mixed 7-up, 15 mg of Good Stuff Strawberry Hibiscus, poured it over ice and garnished it with fresh strawberries. Chef Jenn was more intricate and made a puree style syrup with the Agua De Flor, Fresa, and poured it over vanilla ice cream.
There are really so many ways to get creative with beverages, so please stay curious. For more fun cannabis drink recipes, you can check out Chef Jenn’s Patreon at https://www.patreon.com/ChefJenn or on Instagram at @chefjenncooks.
Why choose cannabis beverages?
In California, cannabis edibles remain among the top-selling products on dispensary shelves, and infused beverages are set to be the next big star. Global Cannabis Beverages Market estimated cannabis beverage sales to be at $146.7 million for 2022.
As someone who spent over two years as a Budtender selling legal weed, I can tell you that customers are still learning how great canna-beverages are. They were my favorite product to throw in as an add-on or talk about them trying next time, as well as my favorite way to consume in a social setting.
Smoking can be stinky, and finding a chill spot to spark up can be hard. Tinctures can taste gross and don’t offer the same effects as other consumption methods I enjoy, and regular edibles take a while to kick in. Since cannabis beverages have a faster onset sit, are easy to hold on to and sip slowly while chatting, and have a super chill high to hang out to, I love bringing them to a friendly gathering.