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20180918_leiffa-lab-arcpress-22 (1)Courtesy of Leiffa/Hillary Rowe

After medical marijuana was legalized in California over two decades ago, the technology behind cannabis consumption started taking off, and it’s truly exploded since 2014, when Colorado became the first state to legalize the plant for recreational purposes. The innovations took the industry from older, water-based extractions, like bubble hash, to advanced methods using solvents such as butane and CO2 to create wax and shatter.

But hash makers didn’t stop there. They soon figured out that freezing cannabis flower immediately after harvest preserves terpenes and plant oils before extraction, leading to the rise in “live” concentrates, like live resin. The newer, stankier product became the preferred dab for connoisseurs, further pushing back solventless and water-based extraction. But the progression of cannabis concentrates continues at a quick pace as newer extraction methods using rounds of ice-water extraction, heat and pressure produce concentrates that easily stack up with their solvent counterparts.

Cannabis extraction companies like Leiffa produce rosin and ice-water hash that looks, smells, tastes and lifts us to the moon like more traditional concentrates — and with the peace of mind that comes from knowing that no butane or ethanol stuck around. Although Leiffa’s Lakewood dispensary is only for medical marijuana patients, the brand’s wholesale concentrates are a growing and popular presence in recreational stores around Colorado.

papayaHerbert Fuego

Dispensaries tend to sell their cannabis to customers based on indica, sativa and hybird or nighttime/daytime designations, but I’m a flavor guy. Give me something new, juicy or pungent.

I don’t care if it’s gassy, fruity, creamy, earthy, sour or floral — the wide span of cannabis flavors is a delight to research. Almost any strain can bring a lip-smacking smoke if grown correctly, but some are more predisposed to good taste than others. Here are ten strains we’ve seen around Denver that make great appetizers:

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