There’s a new job in Denver, Colorado in lieu of the state’s decision to legalize marijuana for recreational use: the marijuana critic.
Just as a food critic distinguishes the flavors in a new dish, and a wine critic discerns the taste of a fine wine, a marijuana critic gives a full report on the different strains and high’s of various types of weed. To attain this job, one must be well versed in the hundreds of strains of marijuana, from OG Kush to Northern Lights and everything in between.
Jake Browne is a marijuana critic for the website TheCannabist.co, which is run by the Denver Post. “I mean, it definitely wasn’t where I saw myself,” he said, “My dream job was to be a lawyer. Now I just hope I won’t need one.”
As required by Colorado law, Browne samples marijuana in the privacy of his home, but likes to write his reviews at local coffee shops around the city.
After taking a hit of a new strain of marijuana he was reviewing, Browne told CBS News “Nice, a little hashy, but it tastes like a clean flush. It’s almost kind of like a movie theatre popcorn flavor, which is nice.”
William Breathes is known as “America’s first marijuana critic,” and writes a column called “Ask a Stoner” for the Denver Westword, an alternative weekly newspaper. In a 2013 interview with The Daily Beast, Breathes described why he does what he does, saying, “I like to think I’m helping patients find really good places to find medicine.” He later continued, “Having a column that deals with marijuana in it every week normalizes it and puts it out there for everyone.”
Browne also described what he looks for when reviewing the drug, saying, “You are also going to have visual cues from marijuana — whether it’s dense, or does it tend to grow a little bit longer, different colors, all those things help you make that full diagnosis.”
TheCannabist.co’s editor, Ricardo Baca, said he looks for reviewers who are experienced writers and smokers, with have a vast array of knowledge on the drug.
As marijuana legalization for recreational use gains traction, the profession of cannabis critic is likely to grow. TheCannabis.co may be getting some serious competition from other critics in the very near future.