Dab to the Future: Guild Extract’s THCa

By Greg Zeman on January 23, 2016@cannabisnow

Alchemy, the superstitious medieval ancestor of chemistry, is best remembered for its failure to discover the “Philosopher’s Stone,” a magical substance that would turn lead into gold and cure all illness with its immortality-granting “elixir of life.”

Guild Extracts strictly uses modern chemistry – molecular isolation to be precise – and while the appearance of their crystalline 99.677 percent THCa is more reminiscent of diamonds, one dab is all it takes to confirm that Guild has created pure gold in a laboratory.

Examining the crystals, I’m blown away by how much they resemble clear rock candy or barbecue salt, and just how little they look like cannabis. Smelling the jar of the rare gems reveals no telltale aromas and a tiny granule sacrificed for the purpose of tasting confuses my tongue, which anticipates saltiness that never materializes.

One interesting thing about a pure THC dab is how subtle its impact is without a terpene profile to “inform” the effects. It isn’t totally imperceptible, but the subtle shifts in perception are hardly the experience you might expect from such a potent product.

But adding some “high terpene extract” (also available from Guild) or a piece of your favorite terpy shatter unlocks the full potential of these “magic” crystals and kicks their effects into overdrive.

I take a large dollop of “Lily” HTE from Guild and sprinkle it with a generous coating of crystals until it somewhat resembles a spotted amanita mushroom from a children’s book. I lower the glistening glob onto a quartz banger and experience a momentary sensory explosion that borders on disorienting – my lungs and mouth flooding with sharp floral flavors as my neurons crackle and whir like an electric motor.

The high is astoundingly clean and focused, with a cerebral effect so pronounced it takes on body of its own – a light speed bullet train to the cosmos, speeding through the skull with such velocity the spine shudders in its thundering wake.

A pronounced sensation of mental clarity gradually builds towards a hyper-focused trance state, until whatever task is at hand becomes saturated with the fanatical urgency of a holy crusade. Time your dab correctly and that laser focus might mean finishing a long overdue project. Time it wrong and you might spend three hours sculpting your mashed potatoes into a shape that “means something.”

At a sesh price of $100/gram, and with availability more or less limited to the West Coast, it may be a couple years before you see a product like this on your local dispensary shelves.

But make no mistake; a real renaissance is happening in cannabis extraction, one that only now is beginning to approach its pinnacle thanks to the efforts of cutting edge extractors like Guild.