If we had to briefly summarize what CBD is, we would say “it looks like marijuana, it smells like marijuana… but it’s not really marijuana”.
And if we had to explain it further, we would tell you that CBD is the acronym for cannabidiol, a molecule that’s present in the infamous green plant. It’s supposed to allow you to feel the relaxing benefits of marijuana without the cognitive side-effects of THC. In the last couple of years, its consumption has grown into a global wellness trend, giving birth to a myriad of health, beauty and cooking products. And now CBD is making its way into in our cocktails.
There are several ways to incorporate CBD in a drink. One way is to make your own CBD simple syrup, which will also add some sweetness to your concoction. You can also float a few drops of CBD oil on top of your cocktail for a more fragrant, in-your-face experience, or mix in some CBD tincture (where CBD is suspended in alcohol) for something smooth and evenly blended throughout.
In terms of quantity, when mixing a CBD-only, non-alcoholic drink, it’s good to start with a 25 mg baseline and, depending on how that feels, increase or decrease from there. When mixing with alcohol, 15 mg per drink is usually enough. The choice of spirit is up to you, just be mindful of the ABV: the higher the alcohol content, the more that will affect you, and the less you’ll feel the actual effects of the CBD. Too much CBD on the other hand may cause some drowsiness and fatigue.
Now for the taste, the distinctive vegetal-citrus flavor of marijuana can shine through in varying intensities – from almost no taste at all to – depending on the CBD product you’re using. It will pair particularly well with similar “green” tastes like mint, basil, and green or matcha tea, intensifying their vegetal properties. It also works wonders to inject a leafy nuance to any cocktail that could use it.
To get yourself familiarized with the taste and behavior of the different products, try some CBD simple syrup in a Mojito, a couple of drops of oil on a Gin and Tonic, and a bit of tincture in a Mint Julep. Then keep experimenting with other classics, or start coming up with some brand new cocktails of your own invention!