It's about time.
High Times magazine's Cannabis Cup, the world's most prestigious (only?) marijuana judging competition is finally coming to Los Angeles after decades in Amsterdam and years in San Francisco.
What took them so long?
We asked associate publisher Rick Cusick:
The first one in the U.S. was a coin flip between Los Angeles or San Francisco. We always had our sights on L.A. The Cannabis Cup and L.A. is like soup and a sandwich.
The Cup and its related marijuana expo commeth to the downtown-area's L.A.s Center Studios Feb. 11 and 12. (Strangely, the Studios pulled out of hosting a rave last year following bad press).
High Times states that the expo will feature a "medicating section available that will accommodate the needs of medical marijuana patients."
The event will also have ...
... California's best indicas, sativas, hybrids, concentrates and edibles will be judged, the winners awarded prizes and afterwards be known as the top in their fields.
Samples will include entries from L.A.'s own array of 500 or so dispensaries (and beyond, considering the outlets outside the city limits).
We always wondered, with no wine-tasting-style spitting available, how the hell judges for these things don't end up passing out after an hour of sampling the finest bud in the land.
Cusick explained that judges will be allowed to live with the weed for a week, take notes according to a questionnaire, and compare notes at the event.
Marijuana entered for competition is judged first and foremost for potency and flavor, High Times' Nico Escondido told the Weekly. Other factors include aroma, taste, visual aesthetics and "burnability." Lab results for THC and Cannabidiol also weigh on the strain's potency score.
High Times is heading back to Amsterdam this year for the 25th anniversary of its Cup there.
Organizers expect no problems in L.A., the medical marijuana capital of the nation, although the municipality's top prosecutor, City Attorney Carment Trutanich, is no fan of medical marijuana culture.
"We're trying to be as transparent and upfront wih the authorities as we can be," says Cusick.
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Tickets start at $30 a day. Patrons must be 18. Cusick:
We've been waiting to come to L.A. for a long time. It's probably going to be the best one.