Justin Alexander
Aug 04 2018 . 12 min read





Without terpenes your cannabis experience would be a flavor void. Terpenes are the aromatic oils in cannabis that make up the distinctive and tasty flavors found emanating from the plant. Responsible for both the flavor profiles and medicinal effects of cannabis, terpenes are a determining factor in the kind of experience you will have. As more and more consumers become educated about terpenes, they are becoming more instrumental in how people shop.

“The cannabis community is educating itself one flower at a time. Compared to several years ago, terpenes weren't even part of the discussion when it came to cannabis. As the market continues to mature, cannabis users will start reading terpene profiles the same way people read beer, alcohol by volume,” explains Remedy’s Randy Villarba.

Nevada’s lab testing regulations and labeling requirements make it easy for users to find their favorite terpenes. “I would say the scent has always been an important factor in purchasing cannabis, but Nevada terpene testing is starting to shape people's choices in more than just taste. We like to teach that ‘your nose knows best’ because oftentimes if you are subconsciously drawn to a specific scent profile, you indeed could benefit from the medicinal effects of the terpenes making up that scent profile,” says TGIG’s Jonathon Cline, who adds, “increased understanding of terpenes has shaped a new appreciation for the scents and flavors associated with a specific strain.”

TGIG’s Strawberry Chem OG flower at The Grove

Strawberry Chem OG flower from TGIG offers a complex bouquet of flavors and scents that fit right in with today’s curious gastronomic palate. It’s definitely a bespoke mixture, according to TGIG’s Jonathon Cline, “it’s a cross between Strawberry Dogshit and Chemdawg with pronounced characteristics of Chemdawg and OG.” Chemdawg is known for its sharp, pungent, diesel-like taste and odor that can be detected from miles away, and Strawberry Dogshit…well, we’ll just leave it at that.

“The strain's genetics provide an interesting terpene profile on their own,” Cline says about the terpene mix of 1.425 mg of b-myrcene, 1.328 b-caryophyllene, and 1.256 b-pinene. TGIG puts a lot of TLC into their strains' terpene characteristics beginning in the grow room where they use all-natural living soil and manipulate their LED light spectrum to pack a hefty THC punch (in the case of Strawberry Chem OG it’s 16.56 percent) into each draw.

“Those who want to better themselves and enhance their comprehension definitely are becoming more aware of terpene profiles,” Cline says. “There are still some consumers who only care about THC potency and price, but many don't realize they can save money by understanding what [terpene] profiles will work best for what they use cannabis for. As we learn more about the effectiveness of terpenes, we are beginning to rejoice over the medicinal benefits that allow consumers to decide their own fate, taking their health into their own hands.”

Remedy's King Louis XIII

“I'm not sure if it's the official story, [but] I heard the King Louis strains were named because of their extremely strong and powerful stink dank smell. Much like the post-Renaissance kings of France, King Louis XIII has a distinct odor that can easily fill a room,” says Remedy’s Randy Villarba. “The Remedy cultivation team selected King Louis XIII due to its above-average THC levels, potency, and terpene profile. King Louis XIII’s vibrant terpene profile is attributed to its parent strains, OG Kush and LA Confidential. King Louis XIII is a heavy indica-dominant hybrid with uplifting sativa effects. Remedy's latest batches of King Louis XIII tested in the mid-20s, reaching as high as 28 percent THC.”

A heavy smoke, King Louis is a deep relaxing body high that hits quick and creates a super sedated effect. Perfect for insomniacs, this will also help curb stress, anxiety, and chronic pain. Like TGIG, Remedy emphasizes the importance of powerful and balanced terpenes. “Flavor is a key factor, but what really moves the needle is terpene profile. As more and more cannabis users are being educated about terpenes, people are realizing they can choose the right strain or concentrate to cater to the effects they want by reading a terpene profile. It's not a secret that patients are number-hunting THC percentages. [But] as more people are educated about terpenes, they'll realize it isn't always about that THC percentage when it comes to flavor and overall effects,” Villarba says. So, scan those labels—not all flower is created the same.

As for his favorite terpene, Villarba says it is myrcene. “I'm a bit high strung, I need it for anti-anxiety and sedation at the end of the day. Myrcene's anti-inflammatory effects are also great for this aging snowboarder's bones and joints,” he explains.

Medizin’s THC Syrup

What better way to refresh your parched palate this summer than with a swallow of crisp mineral water and a splash of THC syrup? It’s the green goddess’ answer to La Croix, except instead of the merest hint of flavor, you get a sip of a high.

“Medizin sought to create a great-tasting beverage for those looking to mix it up,” says Medizin’s David Farris. “Our flavors offer a great pairing to your choice of soda water or tonic water. We currently offer sour green apple, watermelon (.138 percent THC), lemonade (.125 percent THC), blue coconut, and strawberry-kiwi. Our syrups have little to no marijuana taste, making this a go-to infused product.”

You can add Medizin’s 100mg THC Syrup to your favorite summer libation, or you can take the plunge with a teaspoon straight to the dome—it’s up to you. This is a fast-acting product, cutting down on the time that it normally takes for an edible to kick in.

Daddy Mack’s

Chill Powder

You can tickle your taste buds with terpene-free treats or you can turn anything—literally, anything—into an edible with Daddy Mack’s Chill Powder. This miraculous powder is odorless, tasteless, vegan, and gluten-free, and it can be “mixed in your water, protein shake, coffee, tea; shaken on your pancakes or burger; or even used in baking, as it is decarboxylated and will not change through the baking process,” says Nevada Powders’ Steve Mack. “You do not need to hide our product in your foods, and your recipes will taste like they should. Our powder makes anything an edible.”

According to Mack, the namesake of Daddy Mack’s, of course, “people who want to medicate but do not like the taste or do not like to vape or smoke will love this product. It is discreet because it looks like you are adding powdered sugar or a powdered supplement to your food and drink.” Chill powder is made using a hybrid strain from Evergreen Organix and contains 100 mg of THC with each 1/3 teaspoon measuring in at 10 mg.

Cannabiotix Sour Grapefruit flower

Cannabiotix’s Sour Grapefruit flower is so flavorful it could count as one of your recommended daily servings of fruits and vegetables. Because it is a cross of Grapefruit Kush and Sour Diesel, “it only made sense to call it Sour Grapefruit,” says Cannabiotix’s David Lloyd. “When we bred Sour Grapefruit we wanted to blend the lemon-citrus OG flavor with the sour spiciness of the classic Sour Diesel. What we ended up with was a beautiful flower that expresses high levels of limonene (9.1 mg) and b-caryophyllene (10.4 mg). Enjoyable at all times of the day, its high is euphoric and relaxing, with notes of sweet citrus and that classic ‘gas’ smell that true connoisseurs all love.”

For Lloyd, terpenes are king and his favorite is myrcene, a relaxant that makes lower level THC strains seem heavier. “At first, everything was about THC. The bigger the number the better. And one could argue that THC is still the number one constituent driving sales. But as budtenders are helping to educate the consumers more and more, I have noticed a shift towards paying more mind to terpenes and their effects.”

Sour Grapefruit is part of the popular trend toward fruity cannabis flavors that still pack an OG punch. At 25.8 percent THC, Sour Grapefruit is a great strain for pain-relief, anxiety, depression and many other ailments and it equally hits the mind and body for a balanced effect.

Exhale Chocolate Chip Square

The classic chocolate chip cookie is an edible slam dunk. You can’t go wrong with a warm cookie studded with gooey chocolate chips. “Who doesn’t love a chocolate chip cookie?” asks Exhale’s Marc Baldwin.

Unlike the original chocolate chip cookie, which was created by accident when Ruth Wakefield ran out of baker’s chocolate in her Massachusetts kitchen, this cookie “was definitely not an accident,” says Baldwin. “We continually strive to acquire the best genetic profiles. We pride ourselves on having the best strain/terpene profile on the market.”

Exhale’s chocolate square maximizes the terps. “The effect users feel has a lot to do with the terpenes and flavor profiles. As end users become more educated and sophisticated, they are developing awareness of the ability to craft the experience through specific dominant terpenes and also secondary cannabinoids, which are extremely important—though they do not seem to be getting the same press as terpenes are these days,” explains Baldwin.

This cookie tastes true to form and it also has a hint of vanilla bean. With a total of 100 mg divided into 10 pieces for the perfect dose, remember to wait a few hours before upping consumption—even though it tastes to good not to. Then ride a sweet delicious wave of euphoria.

Kynd’s LA OG Flower

Everyone loves the classics. The tried-and-true, the go-to, the time-tested and time-honored favorites. Think baked Alaska, filet mignon, a glass of Champagne—and Cheech and Chong. Into this celestial realm enters Kynd’s LA OG flower. “LA OG is a cross between two powerhouse strains—LA Confidential and none other than staple indica OG Kush. When you combine them, you make LA OG. It clearly pays homage to its hometown of Los Angeles,” says Kynd COO Stacy Castillo.

Leaving aside Los Angeles’s obvious place as second best city (Las Vegas is clearly number one), who isn’t captivated by hallowed OG Kush’s earthy pine and lemon scent, as well as its mysterious genetic origins reaching deep into ’90s LA lore? Combine that mystique with LA Confidential’s powerful psychedelic punch and classic skunk aroma, and you’ve got

a winner.

You can count on Kynd’s superior staff to do justice to this strain. “Flavor has always been an important factor in our grow cycle. Our cultivation team takes pride in its processes, which we have down to a science. It’s also not a one-approach-fits-all strain process—every strain has a tailored process, and we treat them all individually in both the grow cycle and the curing to foster the most flavorful cannabis possible,” Castillo says. “LA OG was one of the very first strains that we grew, and it remains a standard in our lineup, as well as one of our most favored and popular indica strains.” With a terpene profile of 3.9 mg b-caryophyllene, 3.5 mg limonene, and 8.1 mg myrcene, expect notes of coffee and fresh green with sweetness and the classic OG flavor. With 20.51 percent THC, the effects are a therapeutic body high with extended relaxation, perfect for right before bed.

State Flower Cannabis’ Pineapple Tonic flower

What luau or exotic barbecue is complete without a pineapple in one form or another? Pineapple upside-down cake, pineapple pizza, even just a plain old plate of sliced pineapple. Purple City Genetics’ Pineapple Tonic is a delicious CBD-rich strain that crosses Pineapple OG with Cannatonic.

“Their breeding was no accident,” says The Apothecarium’s Matthew Janz. “It was a deliberate, methodical creation. Pineapple OG is known for its tropical, pineapple-esque terpene profile. It has a vibrant nose and is potent. Cannatonic, on the other hand, is a well-known CBD strain which has a more earthy terpene profile. Combine the two and you get the best of both worlds—powerful effects and tantalizing taste.”

With a terpene profile of 8.06 mg b-myrcene, 3.84 mg a-pinene, and 1.93 mg caryophyllene, Pineapple Tonic calms the nerves, expands the mind AND relieves the kink in your back. “Despite being a CBD-heavy strain (12.14 percent), Pineapple Tonic carries much of its Pineapple OG parent qualities. From its strong lineage comes a sativa dominance—it’s a CBD strain that’s great for relief and getting your day started. It boasts a large spread of medicinal benefits that can help manage the symptoms of a multitude of ailments.”

When talking terps, Janz touts the benefits of myrcene, found in both indica and sativa strains lending analgesic, anti-inflammatory, and, in some cases, sedative properties. “Myrcene can even be powerful enough to create typical indica effects in sativa strains. One of our favorite parts of myrcene is that it lowers the resistance in the blood-brain barrier, allowing for easier absorption of other terpenes and cannabinoids. When myrcene is combined with other terpenes and cannabinoids it can open up our body’s responsiveness, thus making each component more effective.” 

Nevada Made’s Kabunky Sugar Cookie flower

Can you ever have enough cookies, especially cookies of the cannabis-infused variety? The answer is no, you can’t. Celebrate palate-popping sweetness and all its delicious iterations with Nevada Made’s Kabunky Sugar Cookies.

This indica-dominant hybrid is a cross between Crystal Gayle, a Northern Lights descendant; Blue Hawaiian, a Blueberry and Hawaiian sativa; and Sensi Star, a powerful indica known for its cerebral effects. Combine all three and expect a tropical berry aftertaste resulting in a terpene mix of 1.3 mg caryophyllene, 3.09 limonene, and a smidge of terpinolene at .10 mg as well as deep, full-body relaxation from 22.1 percent THC.

This flower smokes deep in the throat, is potent, takes effect very quickly, sweeping your cerebrum away on a confectionary journey that relieves ailments such as migraines and back pain. You might want to save this cookie for an after-dinner treat rather than an afternoon pick-me-up, unless you like long, delicious naps with your sweet, sweet sugar snaps. We may have to dub this one the “med for bed.”