My review today is a product from Gage Cannabis Co., a brand owned by Hamilton, Ontario-based licensed producer (LP) Radicle Cannabis Inc. To be honest, I haven’t heard much about either the brand or the LP.
With each province regulating retail in a different way in Canada, there seems to be some pretty big regional variation when it comes to availability. Something I can buy in B.C. may not be available at all in other provinces.
As a result, small regional bubbles have formed, with unique characteristics like hyped up cultivars and brands. It has always been this way, with each region developing its own cannabis character.
Here on the west coast exists the oft-repeated and notorious B.C. Bud reputation, much of which stems from a permissive era of non-enforcement prior to legalization. There are dozens of cultivars that have come and gone over the years, brands of good and ill repute, and a continued robust illicit marketplace.
Because of the almost exclusively regional nature of the B.C. cannabis scene prior to legalization, we have a tendency to focus only on what is happening here. The thing is, a lot of the legal cannabis on shelves today comes from all over the country, particularly Ontario.
It makes sense. Southern Ontario has the highest concentration of greenhouses in North America, and many of the legal industry’s early movers were based in our biggest province. When I think of Ontario legal weed, my mind immediately goes to the big corporations with big greenhouses—but Radicle looks to be aiming to fill the gap in the high-end market.
I have heard all about Broken Coast and Qwest and Tantalus and CannaFarms and Whistler here in B.C., but brands like Gage may not have registered as strongly with me as a result of my western bias. In reality, I can’t remember anyone who ever brought weed in from Ontario prior to legalization, so it has never been much of an option.
Getting the weed
This cultivar was $42 plus tax for an eighth at my local spot, putting it in the mid-level price range for higher-end legal weed. It is still a bit high, but it is good to see the $30 to $45 range start to fill out with promising options. It only makes sense that more competition would be good for the retail purchaser eventually, and I expect this to continue, at least to some extent.
Everything but smoke
It smelled strongly of kush when I popped the top. Kushy to me is its own gassy, caramely, earthy smell that is easy to identify once you know it. Add a bit of fruit, and this sample smelled excellent.
It looked good, too, with nice nugs of a good size. It came in a plastic jar, but smaller and more appropriate for an eighth than some of the others I’ve tried.
It broke up nicely, and as I did so, the smell of berries became more pronounced. This eighth had proper moisture content, and I was looking forward to smoking it by the time it was rolled up.
It tasted a lot like berries, with some floral flavour in there. The smoke was definitely sweet. It burned great from beginning to end, and I really enjoyed it.
I am not a huge fan of the old kushes here in B.C., generally labelled Purple or Master or Bubba, because they make me want to take a nap. Napping is awesome, but it is not what I like in my weed.
This was smiley and relaxing, without that sedative feeling, which falls right smack-dab into my wheelhouse. I like weed that makes me smile, and this was an example of exactly that.
Gage Strawberry Fire OG
A new high score from me. This was tasty, burned great, and had enjoyably euphoric effects. There is still some room to improve, but an impressive effort from Gage. I will definitely keep an eye out for more of their products in the future.