Is it an oil or a beverage?
ocs.ca lists this in the oil section, but the product is really intended to be used to infuse your own drinks. I suspect Veryvell listed this as an oil to side step the stringent 10mg thc limits the government has placed on cannabis edibles and beverages.
The low cost per mg of CBD attracted me to the drops by. I also wanted the freedom to infuse any beverage rather than being limited to one of the few pre-made CBD drinks currently available.
Problem is, even ten of these bitter drops impart a fairly strong flavour. It doesn’t really taste weedy. While the product description on ocs.ca mentions a ‘subtle hint of passion flower extract’, the ingredient list only mentions different components of the cannabis emulsion and ‘flavouring agents’. While researching passion flower I’ve learned some use it as a natural remedy for anxiety, but it’s taste is described to be earthy and bitter. Odd choice for a flavouring agent. In my opinion the bitterness of the drops is not even a good bitter as far as bitters go.
So, ultimately you have to find a way to make your beverage work around the taste profile of the drops. You probably don’t want to put these in just anything. Here’s what I tried:
In water, mixed with a few spoonfuls of an apple blossom honey is a combo I loved with the TGOD THC infuser. With Exhale it was horrid.
Mixed with Black River’s Bartlett Pear Nectar the result was actually pretty decent. If not a complementary companion adding balance, the drops are at least pushed well behind the full mouth intensity of the juice.
In plain water? Ultimately, I’m not really looking to increase my juice intake. Water really would be my beverage of choice. At first it was quite off putting. By the end of my glass it grew on me enough to be tolerable.
The Truss website recommends adding it to tea. I tried a quality high grown Ceylon English Breakfast tea steeped in 95°C water for 5 minutes. I can’t say the Exhale drops improved the tea, but they blended well together. The bitterness stood out less behind the mellow astringency and full-bodied flavour of the tea. If I didn’t know better I would have just assumed I was drinking a lower quality tea and nothing more. Not too bad. After adding bit of milk and a Japanese knotweed honey it was actually to delicious drink.
The faq on the Truss Beverages website states:
We believe Veryvell™ Drops onset time can be as little as 15 minutes* or as long as 2 hours.
My personal experience, as with other emulsified beverages, was that effects could generally be felt fairly quickly. Starting in as little at eight minutes after the first sips, peaking within an hour, and notably diminished with 2.5 hours of finishing the drink.
Unlike oils, it seems I experienced faster onset and stronger effects when consumed on an empty stomach.
Similar to what I noted with Basecamp CBD Iced Tea, a little CBD seems to go farther than you would expect in these emulsified drinks. After a week of no cannabis use, the effects from just 5.5mg sipped over 20 minutes was noticeable. After a week of use, and likely a higher tolerance to the small thc component in this product, I had settled on 10mg doses.
When my THC tolerance is lower I feel:
- A stronger sense of physical relaxation around my face
- More of a mental zing
I was always reasonably focused.
Complexity of THC and CBD interaction
A curious thing happened when I consumed high THC alongside this product. I had vaped Pedro’s Sweet Sativa a little over an hour before taking the photos for this review. I’m not sure exactly how many drops fell into the cup while taking the photos, but I don’t think it was that many. Likely less than 10, no way it was more than 20. After getting the shot, I drank a little of what was in the cup. I didn’t finish it. I had read about the idea of CBD potentiating, or increasing the impact of THC, before:
Low doses of CBD when combined with THC enhanced, while high doses of CBD reduced the intoxicating effects of THC. The enhancement of intoxication by low-dose CBD was particularly prominent in infrequent cannabis users and was consistent across objective and subjective measures.A randomised controlled trial of vaporised Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinol and cannabidiol alone and in combination in frequent and infrequent cannabis users
However, this was the first time I had experienced this phenomenon in an obvious way. I was really surprised by how dramatic of a shift I felt. It seemed to give my THC dominant experience a new set of legs. It took on a new dimension. I was also more spaced out.
The convenience of large amounts of low-cost, water soluble CBD distillate in a concentrated form is what makes the product attractive. If you want a CBD beverage, nothing else currently comes close to competing with this in terms of cost per mg. It’s also super nice to be able to choose both your desired dose and the quantity of liquid you want to drink.
The packaging is better than average. A glass bottle in a sturdy cardboard tube suggests it should be easy to recycle. Given it’s concentrated, this one bottle might replace a couple dozen bottles of a pre-made beverage. +2 for sustainability. Unfortunately, the ingredient list includes palm oil. You may recall that I’ve ramble on about palm oil sustainability before. I sent Truss a message asking for more details on how they source this ingredient and will update here once I receive a response.
Bioavailability, and onset times can be great, but overall effects are around average.
Unfortunately, the overall experience, is sub par. The strong bitter taste is Veryvell Exhale’s weakest point. This is a good value buy if you can get past that and don’t mind that the ingredients include palm oil.
Date: June 20th 2020
Dose: Approximately 11 drops (5.5mg) in 250ml of water.
First drop took a moment to fall, then the dripping gradually picked up speed. Probably best to only let a few fall at a time if you want to be really accurate. Can’t really smell or see it at all in the water. Not super strong, but an unpleasant taste. Bitter. Makes me wonder if the ingredients went rancid.
Can already feel initial effects.
Finished the drink. Could taste it all the way to the last drop. Suggesting a little stirring with a spoon is enough to have it uniformly mixed. In the end it was tolerable, but I’ll likely mix this in with honey in the future.
Can feel a subtle tingle around the temples. Sense of calm alertness.
Had lunch with the Family. Got into some silly finger walking with the kid.
Overall effects are very present. Perhaps a touch on the lighter side compared to what I’m used to from vaping flower, and stronger than what I’m used to from 20mg of oils.
Feel more a full face relaxation than I did before. In a decent mood. Ready to tackle some work projects.
Organized files and worked on editing photos.
Clear headed and focused. Feel as though effects are diminishing.