Celeb chef tech now powering Evervibe drink mixes, Infused Element beverages
Azuca. It’s fun to say. That’s probably in part due to its similarity to the word for sugar in Spanish, which gets your mouth spritzing, and because it sounds like a cartoon car horn. A-zooooo-cah!
As for the reason the word keeps popping up in Mass cannabis—well, Azuca comes in handy. Not just for getting super stoned—we’ll get to that part in a moment—but also for people who want to consume edibles without burdening their liver. A lot of heads are already concerned about the extra sugar they’re consuming by munching any THC treat in sight, but on top of that, there is the way your body processes infused foods.
Put simply, most of the time, your liver does most of the work. And while the jury is still out on whether processing high or even massive amounts of cannabinoids definitely causes damage to that organ, research suggests that such behaviors may lead to increased enzyme levels, especially if mixed with other substances. The liver is also an imperfect tool for producing predictable effects, since everybody’s functions in a unique fashion.
Enter Azuca’s signature hydrophilic technology that “bypasses that lengthy trip through the liver, and instead absorbs directly into the soft tissues of the mouth, esophagus, and stomach to reach your endocannabinoid receptors quickly and efficiently.” As the company puts it, “This allows cannabinoids to take effect in a groundbreaking, consistent, and predictable five to fifteen minutes.”
That has long been our experience with products from Wana, which is famously in cahoots with Azuca founder and esteemed chef Ron Silver. So while there will always be a jar of Wana gummies in our cupboard, it’s great to see more Bay State brands starting to innovate with this combo of “smaller particle size and water-friendly coating that enables the body, which is made of over 60% water… to absorb products with unprecedented efficiency.”
We recently met the crew from the Holyoke-based Infused Element, which produces a line of infused pastries under the name Izzy and Ezra as well as the Honeycat brand of infused beverages. The latter’s soda pop, cold brew, and margarita are outstanding, natural and delicious-tasting to the final drop. And in our experience guzzling three at a time, they kick in quickly.
“We have hash rosin-infused beverages that are healthy, low sugar, and have all-organic ingredients and a fast-acting delta-9 [THC] experience,” Co-Founder Ezra Bleau told Talking Joints Memo. “The cold brew is a Peruvian fresh roasted [bean] from a local roaster in Northampton—Enchanted Forest. They roast it, and we make it the next day.”
Co-Founder Isaias “Izzy” Rosario noted that Azuca’s not their only key scientific ingredient—they also use a proprietary plant-based preservative for freshness. Regarding their drinks, Wholesale Account Director Ben Kenison said they are among the fastest-acting in the market, taking five to ten minutes to activate. Kenison added, “It’s about simple ingredients, no preservatives, chemical free. We’re focused on solventless rosin and integrity throughout the whole product. Everything is simple, everything is fresh.”
We also checked out the Evervibe launch party at the Summit Lounge last week. We already tend to favor drink mixes for their portability and convenience—you can dump as many as you wish into a drink, depending on how high you want to get, plus they fit in any purse or pocket—and these new packets have the added benefit of leveraging Azuca.
“It’s an edible. It’s not just classified as a drink, because you can also eat it.” Evervibe Senior Account Manager Ryan Goodwin explained how it works along with his own personal preferences. “I like to eat it like Pixy Stix every now and then, but it’s completely water soluble, absorbed by the soft tissue because the molecule is so small, and it has a super rapid onset.”
Though it is an upstate New York-based company, Evervibe’s Massachusetts drink mixes are their first product, manufactured in partnership with the Orange-based Temple Hill Collective. Goodwin continued …
“We wanted to provide something that was light on the flavor side, and light on the sugar side. We didn’t want anything that was too overbearing, so with blood orange, you can really use that with any type of drink or water. Same with strawberry-lemon and grapefruit; they wanted something refreshing too. It launched in the summer, so those are more the summer flavors, but there will be other seasonal flavors too further down the line.”