4/20 in LA: Tasting a comfy, culinary CBD collab

As an LA-resident of over ten years, I’ve witnessed many a 4/20 in Southern California. Due to the state’s relaxed pot laws, 4/20 has always been an unofficial holiday, in which enthusiasts take off work or lose their entire weekend in Joshua Tree on a hash-induced vision quest.

However, this 4/20 was different. For the first time since the 1920s, recreational use of marijuana is completely legal in California for consumers over the age of 21 (though you still can’t smoke in public), and brands, fitness studios and retailers around Los Angeles used 4/20 as a way to dip their toes in the (pot) water.

We’ve seen several pot-themed collabs in the past, like The Standard Hotel’s partnership with cannabis brand Lord Jones or Netflix’s pop-up at an LA dispensary to promote its series “Disjointed,” but neither were timed to celebrate 4/20, so I was interested to see what brands would use the holiday as an excuse for brand activations and collaborations.

I was thrilled to discover Van Leeuwen ice cream’s collaboration with comforter brand Buffy on Instagram, and knew I had to check it out. It’s an unlikely (albeit, genius) brand partnership where, for one night only in their  New York and LA locations respectively, Van Leeuwen served up a CBD sundae, complete with ice cream, whipped cream, hot fudge, sprinkles and topped with CBD oil. They filled their shops with super-soft Buffy comforters and pillows, so patrons could curl up and cuddle once their CBD oil hit.

It was my first time partaking in 4/20 celebrations (I’ve never been much of a pot smoker), and I was not disappointed. The CBD oil made me feel relaxed but not high, my sundae was delicious, and I learned that CBD oil can actually intensify the flavours of food, which really open doors for restaurants, hotels, and brands to get in on the action. There are endless possibilities for tasting menus, specialty dishes and branded pot strains! Perhaps a multi-course CBD-infused dinner from Chef Ludo Levefre at Petit Trois or a CBD matcha at Matcha Bar!

I’m looking forward to next year, when perhaps more brands will catch on to cashing in on this unofficially holiday. I’m looking at you, Taco Bell.


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