Ed Haas is living the dream. The 37-year-old Denver-rooted real estate professional is getting paid to tell folks about one of his favorite passions: Flavor-oriented pairings of craft beer and super-terpy hash.
Yes, seriously. And Haas knows what he’s talking about. He even started a blog to track his findings and spread the good word, and those taking his Green Labs class later this month are sure to get an education on the subject.
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“One of my all-time favorite pairings was having a glass of Mikkeller Spontan Cherry, which is a cherry-infused sour ale, and pairing that with Cherry Afghan CBD dabs,” Haas told me recently. “The way the different interpretations of the cherry played off of each other was really interesting and super flavorful.”
I spoke with Haas about his pairing passion, the class he’ll be leading later this month and how he feels that there is more depth in this beer-and-hash flavor combination than a scotch-and-cigar outing — so do read on.
The Cannabist: So Green Labs is calling it a hash and craft beer pairing course, but you were telling me earlier that it’s more like a craft beer dinner with some “terpene education.” So what should people expect?
Ed Haas: Someone coming to this event should expect to perhaps learn more about terpenes and their role in the flavor and aroma of marijuana strains, plus their role in beers as well. With three different high-quality beers being paired with three quality hashes, they should also expect to learn about different styles of both beer and hash, while also hopefully seeing how they themselves can go pair these items in the future.
Cannabist: What do people need to bring?
Haas: People coming to this event should bring an open mind, curiosity and hopefully a love or interest in both good beer and good hash.
Cannabist: Tickets are $45. What’s included?
Haas: Three different beer and hash courses. We’re still nailing down sponsors and products we’ll use, but ideally I’m shooting for pairing a good sour, a good IPA and a good stout, preferably barrel-aged with three different, very terpy hashes that will be picked to go well with each style of beer. You won’t be getting a Sam Adams and some brown crumble hash. Think more like a good, local double IPA being paired with strong pine/resiny/forest-flavored hash.
Cannabist: Do you think that beer and cannabis can be legitimately aesthetically paired? Or is it more just a fun idea, a great combination?
Haas: When I first started to pair good beers and marijuana or hash, I did it purely because I enjoyed the buzz of both together in small amounts. It took me discovering some of the incredible, local water hash being offered by Pink House and Kind Love before I started to tinker with different combinations regarding flavor pairings. So after a few years of doing this, I can definitely say that there is a legitimate world of flavor combinations, probably more than a person who enjoys a glass of scotch and a cigar would ever find. It’s also a really fun idea, too!
Cannabist: Why are you the right guy to be leading this conversation?
Haas: Mostly I think because I have a love for both good beer, really good marijuana and hash, and that I’ve been pairing on my own for a few years now, starting a blog focused on this topic as well as throwing the first craft beer and hash pairing event with Cannabase in 2014.
Cannabist: So you’ve done this before? And now you’re doing it again?
Haas: Having already done the event with Cannabase last year, I’ve been keeping my eye on the scene to see if another venue or group would be interested in helping me put something like this on. It’s always fun to meet like-minded people, so when I saw that Green Labs had been doing wine-and-cannabis nights as well as sushi-and-cannabis rolling classes, I knew these were the people I wanted to talk to.
Cannabist: Why hash and not flower?
Haas: Flower, as terpy as it can be, loses a lot of its flavor after a few hits in a bowl, bong or even a flower vaporizer. One could argue that the first hit of flower may carry more of the flavor than the hash overall, but the hash tends to keep its terp profile longer, and in the case of really good clean BHO, you can just take four or five really small dabs in a sitting and still get immense flavor from each hit.
Cannabist: And there are no issues with on-site consumption at Green Labs?
Haas: Nope, it’s a paid event held on private property.
Haas’ afternoon of craft beer and hash is 2 p.m. March 21 at Green Labs, 1250 31st St. in Denver. Tickets, $45, are available via Green Labs’ website.