The waves crash right up against the end of the street in Pacifica, California and less than a block away from the saltwater spray, nudged between year-round Christmas knickknack stores and wine bars in the small coastal town, one finds the 150 Collective. It’s a small space with a big perk, a dab bar located near the beach, and today’s adventure includes a demo on one of the hottest emerging methods of cannabis concentrate extraction – rosin.
Made by squeezing the THC-rich trichome heads from the plant matter using only heat and a press, more and more consumers are finding rosin as a solventless solution for potent, concentrated applications of cannabinoids. Pressing cannabis in this way leaves two end products, an extremely flattened bud and a piece of parchment paper lined with what Allie Butler, the force behind The Hepburns, coins “instant dabs.”
“It’s all terps,” Allie says as she samples out huge globs of fresh-pressed rosin made from a beautiful strain called Sherbert.
We’ve reached magic hour and golden beams of light are pouring into the room through a window. After Allie presses out a selection of Do-si-Dos with her manual Medisun press, she holds the parchment paper against the window for the group to see the clarity of the end product. It’s a gorgeous yellowed hue and bursts with terpenes when brought to the nose for closer inspection. In order to smoke it, the fresh dab material is gathered together with a metal tool and repressed by hand using the heat of a small glass art piece that looks like a miniature clothes iron.
As Allie uses true physical strength, standing on top of the press and placing the whole weight of her body down on the press, a young man gathered in the room for the demonstration compares her to Rosie the Riveter. The comparison is easily drawn, she’s manually operating a large piece of machinery in a realm that continues to be dominated by men. By taking up the tools of the solventless revolution she preaches, Allie is breaking new ground for a female force in the marijuana marketplace – but she’s also not doing it alone.
Behind the dab bar, Adam – the extraction artist responsible for Hashbury Extracts and Allie’s partner – begins an involved process that ends up taking the better part of an hour. In between dispensing dabs of his ice-water hash (which is quite literally finer and much lighter-hued than the beach sand outside) he’s rolling a joint of epic proportions. The flower component behind the joint is Julio’s Dog, a cross of Cookies and the Chem-dominant phenotype Cherry Alien Dog, which is typically saved as the headstash of the grower Adam partners with. Also included in the joint are rosin made by pressing Julio’s Dog as well as a “shatter snake” crafted from ice-water hash derived from Julio’s Dog mixed with hash derived from a different closely related phenotype called Julio Jones. To simplify, he’s gathered all the branches of Julio’s family tree together for a spectacular smoke session.
As Adam fires up the joint, the pressing continues, with Allie offering patrons who brought along their own herbal selections the chance to see how their strains will fare in terms of rosin production.
While offerings in dispensaries can include rosin pressed from buds, they also sell rosin as ice-water hash which has been pressed, leaving savvy consumers to ask whether the rosin is “nug run.” In the cannabis forum, trends and a new vernacular to describe them are constantly emerging and evolving.
Have you tried rosin?