Last Saturday, the 18th Annual Emerald Cup Awards was held at The Montalbán Theatre near Hollywood and Vine in Hollywood in Los Angeles, California—and...

Last Saturday, the 18th Annual Emerald Cup Awards was held at The Montalbán Theatre near Hollywood and Vine in Hollywood in Los Angeles, California—and it was truly a spectacle to behold.

As people shuffled in, creating a continuous stream of advocates, patients, breeders, and growers, the venue filled quickly. Some attendees made their way to the dab bar and drink bar at the Mezzanine level, and others made their way up to the rooftop, which is where the real magic began.

I walked through a vine-covered corridor into the rooftop party area where vendors such as LitHouse and Fig Farms handed out generous gift bags with eighths and double pre-rolls. A sprawling 360-degree view of downtown Hollywood provided the backdrop. Musical performances by Andreas One, Jasmine Solana, and Lafa.

Courtesy of Danny Lee

As for the ceremony itself, there was a whopping number of categories—over 50—and it was hosted by a number of special guests including Ngaio Bealum, Whitney Beattie, and the clear fan favorite hosts, Swami Chaitanya and Nikki Lastreto of Swami Select, who we also recently profiled in print.

We were impressed by the powerful sense of community. On one hand, the ceremony felt like the Academy Awards, as Rolling Stone puts it, but on the other hand, there was a strong craft farmer and hippie vibe undercurrent. For instance, when the hosts asked a question, the crowd answers back loud and clear.

“It’s our culture, it’s, it’s our community … they feel like there’s an ownership here because of my deep roots and connection to the community,” Tim Blake told High Times. “And they just feel the love. We don’t do it for the money, we do it to really do something special. You know, at the Harvest Ball last year, we gave away over 50 free booths. And people just know who we are and where we’re coming from.

“We’re not a big crew, our local people, and we love our, our community. And so it’s just a mutual love affair,” Blake added. And people feel it.” Individual, personal use categories were included, so that people without expensive licensing could participate.

Tim Blake, Courtesy of Danny Lee

The Emerald Cup and Blake are both mostly associated with the Emerald Triangle encompassing Mendocino, Humboldt, and Trinity Counties, but this year the event was moved to Los Angeles to represent a strategic move.

“In 2017, legalization came in, I knew then that for our contestants and our vendors and sponsors that the future was LA—the largest cannabis market in the world, the largest media market in the world,” Blake said. “This is where they need it, we’re gonna do their Academy Awards in the cannabis industry.”

The judges had to go from 700 entries, all top-shelf, and narrow them down to just 182 winners. In some categories this year, the process involved blind or doubleblind methods in order to prevent bias for any one farm or company.

The trophies were hand-blown by glass artist Ryan Fitt in collaboration with Puffco. The event was overseen by executive producer Taylor Blake, Tim’s daughter, who is increasingly taking in the reins of the enterprise.

It took 150 expert judges to find the winners including Alec Dixon of SC Labs, Bill and Jeff Levers, Eric Brandstand, Guy Rocourt, Jimi Devine, Maya Elisabeth, The Dank Duchess, Abdulah Saedd, and too many others to list. The crew of judges mobilized last February, and according to Swami Chaitanya, were confined to a room until they could narrow down the contestants.

Dennis Hunter from Farmer and the Felon had to return to the stage many times, as the team won award after award. I was able to snag some Farmer and the Felon seeds. LitHouse, Rebel Grown, and Fig Farms also took home several awards that night. The crowd went wild when Huckleberry Hill Farms won an award.

Since 2004, the Emerald Cup has served as “a grassroots celebration of the cannabis plant and harvest, and as an unbiased, free, and fair competition,” but Blake and the leadership of the event emphasize that it is really about people—farmers, judges, entertainers, and attendees.

Courtesy of Danny Lee

The Willie Nelson Lifetime Achievement Award

Woody Harrelson was the guest of honor, receiving the coveted Willie Nelson Lifetime achievement award. Past winners include Winona LaDuke, Tommy Chong, Valerie Corral, and Willie Nelson himself. Harrelson was an advocate going back decades, with a proven track record of serious activism.

“So we got the information to Woody, and he checked us out,” Blake said. “And, you know, he almost thought about not taking the award this year, because Green Street lost their permit. And then The Woods couldn’t get their permit to open. We didn’t have a venue. And so what was he going to do? And in the course of one week, we found this place, and he got a permit to open his place. And he called me up and we had a long talk. And he said, you know, heck, I’m gonna come out there and join you guys. And I’ll tell you what, I was tickled pink, I told him, I said, You know what, you have no idea what this means to us. And now, seeing The Woods open up.”

Courtesy of Danny Lee

Harrelson was chosen not because of his celebrity star power, but based on his activism in the cannabis space. That dates back to Woody’s symbolic protest by illegally planting a hemp seed in Kentucky in 1996 and his vocal activism in favor of environmental sustainability, veganism, and regenerative agricultural practices.

It’s the same environmentally healthy practices that are already a part of the Emerald Cup.

“For the first time ever, we had more indoor than the sungrown entries, which is, you know, pretty big change,” Blake said. “The beverages and the edibles are just blowing up. The enhanced beverages are unbelievable and the pre-rolls had gone from like afterthought D grade trim to where it’s like just stunning representations. We did a classification system separating the terpenes into classification systems and gas and desserts and sweets and whatnot, so that we could really do an educational process not only for our judges, but for our community, and get people really to break out of that mold and looking for the highest THC and start looking for the right cannabinoid profile fits best for them.”

Courtesy of Danny Lee

Wooks, Wizards, and Warlocks

Some guests were dressed up as wizards, and another was dressed in a zoot suit period piece. Others looked as though the hippie lifestyle never faded at all since the ‘60s. Pebbles Trippet was a center of attention, being a longtime advocate, and she received devotionals from both Blake and Harrelson.

“People down here are pretty cool,” Blake said. “And they get to get dressed up for a show like this. And now people are just, it’s exciting for a lot of these hill people to have a reason to come out, come down here and get dressed up. And they’re not they’re not pitching at all. They’re excited. And they’re coming up and telling me how wonderful it is.”

I returned to the rooftop where the most fun was to be found. There, I bumped into Shavo Odadjian of System of a Down who was there to promote his flower from 22Red. I found a shrine with beautiful Hindu representations.

Throwing events such as this isn’t all fun and games when the rules become involved, but Blake is hopeful.

“This year, the DCC [Department of Cannabis Control] came in heavy at the Harvest Ball,” Blake said. “They were telling small farmers that they couldn’t display things; they were going after small farmers and people … in their booth smoking, you know, it’s like that personal stuff. So we had to continue that educational process. But it’s so critical for farmers and brands to have direct access to consumers … We need to open that up. And so it’s educating the DCC so that we set the bar and show them how to do it so that these farmers markets and all kinds of events, not just ours, can happen all over the state because it’s so critical for the consumers and for the farmers.”

Courtesy of Danny Lee

Coverage of the 18th Annual Emerald Cup Awards at the Montalbán Theatre will be provided by ALTRD.TV. You can watch all taped educational fireside chats, exclusive interviews, and the ceremony. A full list of winners, provided by the Emerald Cup, is below:

FLOWER

Sungrown Flower Category Winners
1st Place Farmer and the Felon – Lemon Sponge Cake
2nd Place Rebel Grown – Double OG Chem
3rd Place Farmer and the Felon x Cookie Fam Genetics – Georgia Pie
4th Place Farmer and the Felon – Double OG Chem
5th Place Full Moon Farms – Black Water OG
6th Place Canna Country Farms – #26
7th Place Rebel Grown – Natty Bumpoo
8th Place Farmer and the Felon – 92 OG
9th Place Huckleberry Hill Farms – Mom’s Weed
10th Place Esensia – Lime Juice

Sungrown – BREEDER’S CUP Category Winner
1st Place Rebel Grown – Double OG Chem

Mixed Light Flower Category Winners
1st Place LitHouse – Modified Grapes
2nd Place LitHouse – Jealousy
3rd Place LitHouse – Lemon Lava
4th Place Safier Family Farms x Peak Humboldt x Mattole Uplift Cooperative – Angel Food Cake
5th Place Healing Herb Farms – Lemon Head OG x Zkittlez
6th Place Monterey Kush Co – Matchalato
7th Place LitHouse – Paragon
8th Place Bono-Ape – Ice Cream Cake
9th Place Monterey Kush Co – Citra-Lato
10th Place Booney Acres – Strawberry Jelly Flower

Mixed Light – BREEDER’S CUP Category Winner
1st Place Healing Herb Farms – Lemon Head OG x Zkittlez

Indoor Flower Category Winners
1st Place Fig Farms – Animal Face
2nd Place Panacea – Pablo’s Revenge
3rd Place Fig Farms – Blue Face
4th Place NUG – Chocolatina
5th Place Fig Farms – Holy Moly!
6th Place Sovereign – Lemon Vuitton
7th Place STIIIZY – Blue Burst
8th Place Cure Company – Marathon OG
9th Place Source Cannabis – Quest
10th Place Atrium Cultivation – Juice Z

Indoor Flower BREEDER’S CUP Category Winner
1st Place Fig Farms – Holy Moly!

Sungrown Greenhouse Flower
1st Place Local Cannabis Co – Sherbhead
2nd Place Glass House Farms – Glass House Farms Waiting Game
3rd Place Local Cannabis Co – Ice Cream Cake
4th Place Local Cannabis Co – Orange 43
5th Place Harborside Farms – The Mac
6th Place Harborside Farms x Bloom Farms – SFV OG
7th Place Humboldt Redwood Healing x The Humboldt Brand – Sour G
8th Place Country Club Cannabis – EVB Rainbow Frootz
9th Place Ridgeline Farms – Ridgeline Runtz
10th Place Harborside Farms – Motorhead

Personal Use Flower
1st Place Parker PZ Moselle – Ohrangatang Titties
2nd Place Colin Teurfs x Dan Pomerantz – Double OG Chem 4
3rd Place Matt Jones – Cheese
4th Place Brandy Schneider – AM Lime
5th Place Mary Polson – Pink Champagne

3rd Party Certified Sungrown Flower
1st Place Emerald Spirit Botanicals – Farm Cut – Pink Boost Goddess

3rd Party Certified Mixed Light Flower Category Winners
1st Place Old Briceland Cannabis Company – Epiphany
2nd Place Old Briceland Cannabis Company – Area 41
3rd Place Old Briceland Cannabis Company – White Gummies #1

Best in Show Category Winner
1st Place Farmer and the Felon – Lemon Sponge Cake

PRE-ROLLS

Pre-Roll – Infused Solventless Extract Category Winners
1st Place Sovereign – Geode Joint – Modified Lemons
2nd Place El Toro Verde – El Toro Verde Cannagar
3rd Place Vital Grown x Sticky Fields x Compassionate Heart x Massive Creations x Feeling Frosty – Mendo Massive

Pre-Roll – Infused Solvent Extract
1st Place Paletas – Paletas Mother’s Milk Infused Blunt
2nd Place Sugar Daddy – Sugar Daddy Indica 2.5G Infused Blunt
3rd Place Weedwoodz – Weedwoodz XOXO

Pre-Roll – Non Infused Category Winners
1st Place Lost Paradise Organics – Gelonade 6pk Flower Pre-Roll
2nd Place Atrium Cultivation – Juice Z Pre-Roll
3rd Place Country – 1:1 Good Neighbor Pre-Roll 6pk

SOLVENTLESS CONCENTRATE

Ice Water Hash Category Winners
1st Place Heritage Hash Co – Whitethorn Rose Live Bubble Hash
2nd Place el Krem – Papaya Bomb Ice Water Hash
3rd Place Papa’s Select – Amarelo #9 90u Ice Water Hash
4th Place Feeling Frosty – Banana Cream Cake x Jealousy 120u Ice Water Hash
5th Place Kalya x Dancing Dog Ranch – Double Rainbow

Rosin Category Winners
1st Place Rosin Tech Labs x Luma Farms – Papaya
2nd Place Heritage Hash Co – Whitethorn Rose Live Rosin
3rd Place Kalya x LUMA Farms – Lemon Limez
4th Place FIELD – FIELD Papaya Cold Cured Live Rosin
5th Place Rosin Tech Labs – Garlic Cookies
6th Place Rosin Tech Labs – Garlic Juice #3 Cold Cure
7th Place el Krem – Strawberry Runtz – Rosin
8th Place Moon Valley Hash Co – Strawberry Banana Cold Cure Live Rosin
9th Place Doc Green’s – White Buffalo Cold Cured Live Rosin
10th Place Have Hash – Zkittlez Cold Cure Live Rosin (Headstash)

Personal Use Solventless Category Winners
1st Place Alice Reis x Flynn Abeln – Wooksauce Winery Screaming Mimis
2nd Place Brett Byrd – Modified Grapes Full spec 45-159 creme brulee consistency w/THC-A layer
3rd Place Brett Byrd – Gush Mints Full Spec 45-159
4th Place Brett Byrd – Modified Grapes Full Spec 45-159
5th Place Brett Byrd – Apple Fritters Full Spec 45-159

CARTRIDGE

C02 Cartridge Category Winners
1st Place Haku – Haku CO2 Live Resin
2nd Place Featured Farms x Burzt Farms – Burzt by Featured Farms
3rd Place Wildseed Co x Cannabis Refined – Cherry Wife CO2 Cartridge

Distillate Cartridge Category Winners
1st Place LEGION – Monarch – Strawberry Banana – Cannabis Derived Terpenes
2nd Place GoldDrop x Fig Farms – Kush Mint Cookies Nug Run Vape Cartridge
3rd Place Beezle Brands – Orange Blossom Buzz Cartridge

Live Resin Cartridge Category Winners
1st Place URSA Extracts – Liquid Diamond Sauce Humboldt Jack
2nd Place Arcata Fire x Humboldt Seed Co – Raspberry Live Resin Sauce Cart
3rd Place Lemon Tree x Holy Water x Orchard Beach Farms – Kiwi tree Single Source Live Resin Cartridge
4th Place ColdFire Extracts x Turtle Pie Co – Prickly Pear Juice by ColdFire Extracts
5th Place Friendly Farms – Friendly Farms Liquid Live Resin Apple Fritter
6th Place The Bohemian Chemist – The Bohemian Chemist Cart Blanche .5g Hotsy-Totsy Live Resin Cartridge
7th Place Halara – GMO Live Diamond Sauce
8th Place Friendly Farms – Liquid Live Resin Flight #23
9th Place ColdFire Extracts – UpDog Juice by ColdFire Extracts
10th Place Oakland Extracts – Papaya Pucker

Solventless Cartridge Category Winners
1st Place Doc Green’s – Runtz Live Rosin Vape Cartridge
2nd Place Jetty Extracts – Fatso Solventless Vape
3rd Place Arcata Fire x Highwater Farms – Key Lime Pie Solventless

SOLVENT CONCENTRATE

Hydro-Carbon Solid Category Winners
1st Place Beezle Brands x Luma Farms – Key Lime Paya Live Resin Budder
2nd Place Beezle Brands x Earthen Farms – Gary Payton Live resin Budder
3rd Place URSA Extracts – -Live Badder Modified Grapes
4th Place Cookies x ArcataX – Day Day
5th Place PaperPlanes Extracts x Land Hammer Farms – Donnie Burger #5 Live Resin Batter

Hydro-Carbon Liquid Category Winners
1st Place Cosmic x Peak x Feeling Frosty – White Runtz
2nd Place FIELD x Wizard Trees x Doja – FIELD x Wizard Trees x Doja RS-11 Live Resin
3rd Place Cosmic x Peak x Feeling Frosty – Orange Daiquiri
4th Place Terphogz – Live Resin Sauce Melon Brainz
5th Place Orchard Beach Farms x Holy Water – Kiwi Tree

TOPICALS

Therapeutic Topical Category Winners
1st Place Care By Design – CBD Joint & Muscle Cream
2nd Place Kush Queen – Kush Queen Transdermal THC Water Based Personal Lubricant
3rd Place OM x Feeling Frosty – Sweet Dreams CBN Rosin Bath Bomb

Cosmetic Topical Category Winners
1st Place Proof – Face Serum
2nd Place OM x Feeling Frosty – Himalayan Kush Rosin Bath Bomb

Personal Use Topical Category Winner
1st Place Erica A – Deep Muscle Rub – Liniment Lotion

TINCTURES

Tincture Category Winners
1st Place Care By Design – Refresh Drops 1:1 MAX
2nd Place Santa Cruz Mountain Tops – La Luna
3rd Place Lempire Farmaseed – LEM OG 1000mg Rosin Tincture

EDIBLES

Edibles – Beverage Category Winners
1st Place HiFi Sessions x Lagunitas x Absolute Xtracts – HiFi Hoppy Chill
2nd Place Pure Beauty – Little Strong Drink
3rd Place K-Zen Beverages – Mad Lilly Passion Fruit Mango Spritzer

Edibles – Beverage Enhancer Category Winner
1st Place S*Shots – Berry Blast

Edibles – Gummies Category Winners
1st Place Kalya x Elephante – Papaya Rosin Gummies
2nd Place Space Gem – Sweet Sleepy Fig
3rd Place Queen Mary – Enchanted

Edibles – Sweet Category Winners
1st Place Cosmic Edibles x Kalya – Solventless Rosin Plant-Based Chocolate Chip Sprinkles Cookie Dough
2nd Place Oasis – Peanut Butter Cup Minis
3rd Place Mammamia – Capri Lemon Cake Bites

Edibles – Savory Category Winners
1st Place Potli x SF Roots – Shrimp Chips
2nd Place TSUMo Snacks – TSUMo Snacks Classic Cheese Crunchers

ALTERNATIVE CANNABINOIDS

Alternative Cannabinoid Flower Category Winners
1st Place Pure Beauty – Terry T & Gelato 33
2nd Place Glass House Farms – Jelly Fish
3rd Place Glass House Farms – Tangelo Flow

Alternative Cannabinoid Flower Breeder’s Cup Category Winner
1st Place Pure Beauty – Terry T & Gelato 33

Alternative Cannabinoid Hemp Flower Category Winners
1st Place Flowgardens – Orange Glaze #32 
2nd Place Flowgardens – Grapefruit

Alternative Cannabinoid Edible Category Winners
1st Place Papa & Barkley – Sleep Releaf
2nd Place Granny B Goods 1:1 Canamels
3rd Place Hi Burst Raspberry Lemonade Fruit Chews

Alternative Cannabinoid Beverage Category Winner
1st Place KHEMIA – Chakra Chai

Alternative Cannabinoid Topical Category Winner
1st Place Carter’s Aroma Therapy Designs – Rasta Roll-On

Alternative Cannabinoid Tincture Category Winners
1st Place Sunrise Mountain Farms – PACIFIC – Full Spectrum CBD Rich Tincture
2nd Place PROOF – CBN Tincture
3rd Place Fiddler’s Green – Kindred Spirit – Raw Tincture

Alternative Cannabinoid Cartridge Category Winners
1st Place Chemistry – Serpentine
2nd place Kurvana –  CBD All-In-One – Banana Smoothie 5:1:5

Hemp-Derived Ingestible Category Winners
1st Place Green Truth – Trifecta Immune (CBDA-CBGA-CBDVA)
2nd Place Kurvana CBD Dream 2:1:3

Hemp-Derived Topical Category Winners
1st Place WeedSport – WeedSport CBD Muscle Stick
2nd Place Pure Dharma – Glow CBD Activated Oil Serum

Most Innovative Product – Consumable Category Winner
1st Place Holy Water x Honey Suckle Lotus  – Jelly Ranchers. Unholy Rosin/Resin Split Jar

Most Innovative Product – Industry Asset Category Winner
1st Place Huckleberry Hill Farms – Sow Your Own Magic

Breeders Hall Of Fame Category Winner
1st Place Greg McAllister

Visionary Award for Glass Artistry Category Winner
1st Place Scott Deppe – Mothership Glass

Regenerative Farm Award Category Winner
1st Place Emerald Spirit Botanicals – Farm Cut

Best Photo Contest Winner – Amateur Category Winner
1st Place Claudia Price – Pancake Stomper No. 5

Best Photo Contest Winner – Professional Category Winner
1st Place Benjamin Neff – The Heart

Best Dispensary – Northern California Category Winner
1st Place Mercy Wellness – Redwood Dr – Cotati

Best Dispensary – Central California Category Winner
1st Place Big Sur Canna + Botanicals – Carmel Rancho Ln – Carmel

Best Dispensary – Southern California Category Winner
1st Place Cornerstone Wellness – Colorado Blvd – Los Angeles

Eco-Conscious Packaging – Category Winner
1st Place Sol Spirit Farms

Environmentally Conscious Indoor – Category Winner
1st Place Moon Valley Cannabis

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