Whether you love her, hate her or hate to love her, you’ve got to admit that when Kim Kardashian makes a move, the world watches. So when the social media starlet announced that her fourth baby shower would be “CBD-themed,” with A-listers like Paris Hilton, Chrissy Teigen and, of course, the entire Kardashian clan blissing out with a sound bath and making custom CBD bath salts, cannabidiol had officially gone mainstream. With millions of fans watching along on Instagram, it’s easy to imagine countless mental lightbulbs going off as people mused: I can entertain with cannabis, too!
I’m obliged to give Kim K. props for her contribution to normalizing cannabis, but it’s just the tip of the cola, if you will, when it comes to the world of high hospitality. Entertaining with cannabis can take many forms, from infused dinner parties to elegant joint tray-passing affairs. But no matter what sort of cannabis party you’re hosting, the most important thing you can do to make your guests feel welcome and comfortable is to ensure that they’re educated about any cannabis products they’ll be consuming throughout the evening.
Serving infused bites? Let guests know the dosage! Mixing up mocktails? Tell them about your tinctures! Staging a beautiful bud bar? Know what’s what, where it’s from and what your guests can expect from each product. Welcoming your guests with knowledge demonstrates not only mindfulness and consideration of your guests’ experience, but also calms the inexperienced, who will appreciate your efforts.
One of my personal favorite ways to kick off a cannabis party is with a well-appointed joint tray, served alongside some bites and non-alcoholic beverages. I’m a firm believer in the joint tray as the perfect pot party starter because when done well, a joint tray is more than just beautiful—it’s also an ideal way to encourage your guests to mix, mingle and meet. After all, who hasn’t made a new friend over a shared joint or a quest for a lighter? Make your guests feel at home, at ease and fancy AF by following some of these tips for building the perfect joint tray to accompany any cannabis culinary event.
The Necessities: Start with your favorite flower and roll enough joints to have one for every two people. This will encourage guests to make new friends as they puff, puff, pass. Also, make sure you have plenty of lighters, as we know those have a way of disappearing into people’s pockets and purses.
The Details: Decorate your tray with florals for the season. Summertime calls for fragrant roses, hibiscus and lilies, but fall seeks brightly colored leaves for an autumnal harvest look. Fresh-cut citrus makes for a beautiful winter display, and if you’re offering up a high-limonene variety, it will celebrate terpenes and offer another educational touchstone for your guests. Anything green and in-bloom from your garden is perfect for a springtime celebration. A few High Hospitality pro tips: Keep your joints from rolling by placing long, flat leaves in an “x” across your tray, and lining the joints on top. I’ve had success with all kinds of leaves, especially fern leaves. Wrap leaves loosely in a damp paper towel until you’re ready to place on the tray in order to keep them from becoming dry and brittle.
The Pairings: Match the flavors in the variety you’re passing with a bite you’re offering. Have a high beta-caryophyllene Purple Punch? Match it with parmesan popcorn with fresh-cracked black pepper. Working with a pinene-heavy In the Pines? Try rosemary roasted potato bites. Remember, you don’t need to be a professional chef to create perfect pairings if you let terpenes be your guide.
There are no right or wrong answers to hosting the perfect cannabis party, so feel free to experiment and find what works for you and the occasion you’re enjoying. Happy hosting!
Originally published in the print edition of Cannabis Now.