Drugs are fun, but combining drugs is even more fun. And the single best combination of drugs on the planet is that of caffeine and cannabis.
There’s something downright divine about this mix, and I am certainly not the first person to notice. There’s even a group that built it right into their religion. The Love Israel Family—Washington State’s largest hippie commune during the 1970s, that at one point included more than 350 people living communally in a dozen Queen Anne homes—considered coffee and marijuana to be spiritual sacraments and consumed them together at their daily predawn ceremonies.
So the question of whether or not coffee and pot are a good combination was answered long before Washington legalized weed in 2012. But legal weed has brought us a new question: Should we consume pot not only with coffee but inside of it?
Seattleites can buy coffee dosed with THC, lattes served with CBD, and, most technologically advanced, THC- infused single-use Keurig coffee pods. With the push of a button, you can now consume both coffee and pot not only in the same sitting but literally in the same sip.
Is this a good thing? Is it better than just smoking some weed while sipping a cup of joe?
I had to find out, so I borrowed a friend’s Keurig machine—my own collection of coffee hardware is dictated by flavor, not convenience—and acquired a few samples of Canna-Coffee made by Kirkland weed brand Olala. The following morning, instead of making my usual pour over, I loaded an Olala K-cup dosed with 10 milligrams of THC into the machine, pressed a button, and out came a jet-black brew that any diner in rural Western Washington would be proud to serve.
Which is to say, it was an all right cup of coffee, but it lacked any nuance and was a little too acidic for my taste. There was a faint herbal spiciness to it that might have been a lingering weed flavor, but overall it was neither an offensive nor a very interesting cup of coffee.
I drank it slowly, and after about an hour, I could feel the energetic and introspective weed-coffee mood coming on, but it remained weak, never growing into that stoned urge to reexamine my life. Likely this was because the state-mandated limit of 10 milligrams of THC wasn’t enough to get me very high. I prefer my coffee and weed buzz to have a heady intensity to it.
When done right, combining coffee and weed feels like adding fuel to the same fire, which might not be too far from the truth. Researchers recently found surprising evidence that coffee can interact with the same part of our nervous system that pot uses to get us high. And there’s also scientific evidence that when consumed together, caffeine accentuates the effects of pot. In a 2011 study, monkeys with an unlimited access to THC used less of pot’s most famous intoxicant when they were on a caffeine-like drug. The study also gave some indication that monkeys that had been habituated to use caffeine and cannabis together found it more difficult to quit, which makes sense because the combination is fucking fantastic.
If you’re a lazy person, you might want to check out Olala’s K-Cups. Or if you’re like me, you’ll just continue making your own coffee, and as it brews, roll up a joint (and maybe mix in some tobacco if you dare), and bask in the religious glory of weed and coffee.