While putting together the Psychedelia Issue, we at the Leaf absolutely had to book Garcia Hand Picked for the Strain of the Month stage. What is more psychedelic than Jerry and The Dead?
The legend of Jerry Garcia weaves like hemp fabric through the American cultural tapestry. The sense of companionship, freedom, and unbridled creativity that he and The Dead championed and inspired in a legion of Deadheads lives on, long after the man himself departed the corporeal realm.
The minute I held an eighth of Garcia Hand Picked flower in my hands, I knew it was special. We see a lot of celebrity-based brands come and go at the Leaf – while there are some high spots, we’ve been vocal in the past regarding our skepticism of efforts to cash in on nostalgia and stardom. After spending some time with the Garcia HP flower, we can say that Trixie, Annabelle, and the Garcia family honored Jerry’s legacy with this homage.
Each eighth comes packed in a silk-screened jar, tucked away inside a box wrapped in swirling, hallucinogenic portraits of Jerry and vibrant, abstract patterns. When you open the top flap, you’re greeted by song lyrics, Jerry quotes, sheet music, abstract patterns and the Garcia Hand Picked logo – Jerry’s four-fingered hand on a guitar pick – smack dab in the center of what is undoubtedly the trippiest jar lid in the Cannabis industry.
The Garcia family explored options for creating a brand to honor Jerry’s legacy for years, and finally partnered with Holistic – a vertically integrated multi-state operator with the systems and branding expertise to build Garcia Hand Picked into a national Cannabis brand. They launched in California, partnering with NorCal Cannabis for their indoor whole flower, and full-term sungrown farms in the Emerald Triangle for their pre-roll packs.
We got our hands on a trio of tasty flowers, all selected by the Garcia family: the sweet, indica-leaning Peanut Butter Souffle, the deliciously potent, sativa-dominant Chem Diesel, and the indica-leaning hybrid we’ll discuss here – the Sour Bubble OG. A potent phenotype of B.O.G. Bubble, these light green nugs hit you with the gas, along with tones of earth and grass. It’s kind of like sitting cross-legged next to a bus outside of a Dead show. Somebody pass me a Samuel Smith’s Oatmeal Stout.
The flower draws smooth, filling the mouth with fuel, followed by an almost immediate soothing euphoria. This isn’t couch-lock, but it’s definitely not “get up and do shit” weed. The effects amplify steadily as it creeps, and you may even experience a bit of a standing wobble if you’re not paying attention. It’s a perfect strain for swaying on the lawn at a concert, if and when we get to do that again. At that time, the Garcia Hand Picked tour bus, lovingly named Bertha, will be making its rounds throughout the country, spreading the love of Cannabis, Jerry, and The Dead.
What a long, strange trip, as Jerry would say. At least we have good music, good Cannabis, and each other. And now, thanks to the Garcia Family and Holistic, we have a Cannabis brand that speaks to Jerry’s legacy.
This article was originally published in the March 2021 issue of California Leaf.
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