First Encounter: AROMA
Top-shelf flowers boast complex aromas- pungent and tactile. When smelling each flower, notice the distinction between the aromas and sensations present in the inhale versus the exhale. Applying pressure to the buds helps release the pungent oils. Cracking the buds open and breaking them down also releases deeper, stronger aromas.
Breaking the weed down in a grinder temporarily diminishes the pungency. We recommend allowing freshly-ground bud to rest--as you would a steak--before evaluation and use.
Cannabis connoisseurs judging at state cups have adopted rating systems based on sorting flavors and aromas into four categories: fuely, fruity, earthy, and floral. By nature, these categories originated through genotype of flowers-- one of the most observable characteristics being aroma.
Aroma profiling can be very subjective, especially given the complexity of each bouquet. To help guide each palate, A Higher Standard organizes particular scents into broader categories, giving the terpenes the credit they deserve: FUELY, FRUITY, EARTHY, FLORAL, SPICE, and CITRUS. The details lie within these categories- you may smell crushed basil, rich olive oil, and cracked black pepper-- the strain is earthy and herbaceous with pungent spice tones.
One palate may smell forest-floor, another detects cedar or pine. These distinctions can be categorized under the broader, more simple, characteristic of earthy. Maybe you detect a blend bright fruit tones, definitely lemon-- you can categorize the profile as lemon-forward fruity.
Our sense of smell can be broad, specific, and reminiscent-- when you can hone your articulation, you can better express your palate’s experience, find common ground, and build a strain-specific knowledge base. This type of organization is meant to assist the palate recognize and identify their subjective aroma-experience and categorize it into a more objective aromatic profile.
The same concept and categories apply to identifying and categorizing the flavor profiles unique to each flower. [These categories are open to interpretation and evolution.]