No one is exactly sure how April 20 became the day to celebrate marijuana, but with the legalization of recreational cannabis in 10 states, events surrounding the unofficial holiday are blowing up this year. Denver is offering grow tours, a cannabis-themed beer tour and a custom sushi-and-joint rolling class, while a 4/20 four-course pot-infused dinner party is taking place in Anaheim, Calif.
In states where cannabis is not yet legal, loosened-up federal regulations now allow wider use of CBD (cannabidiol), the nonpsychoactive component of marijuana. Although laws governing CBD differ in every state, some operators are using 4/20 as an excuse to play around with the hemp derivative.
1. Fast-food high
Carl’s Jr. is the first national QSR chain to launch a CBD-infused item—but only in one Colorado location. On April 20, the Rocky Mountain High: CheeseBurger Delight (CBD for short) will debut at the Denver store for one day only. The item features two charbroiled beef patties topped with pickled jalapenos, pepper jack cheese and fries for extra crunch. In keeping with the theme, the burger is slathered with Carl’s Jr.’s signature Sante Fe sauce infused with CBD. The item’s price tag of $4.20 also fits the occasion.
2. Freshening up with CBD
Fresh & Co.’s hemp- and CBD-themed menu is running from April 12-30, so customers can partake before and after 4/20. Offers at the fast-casual concept include the Half-Baked Salad (hemp cakes, mixed hemp greens, sea beans, red onion, carrots, beets, crispy onions, jalapeno s’chug and CBD-infused ginger cashew aioli); Blazed Beet Sandwich (similar ingredients layered on beet bread); and CBD Pink Honey Ginger’ade Lemonade. The menu touts the health benefits of CBD and lists the cannabidiol levels in each item, which vary from 10-15 milligrams.
3. A taco for the times
For its Weekly Taco Feature (WTF), Velvet Taco is offering up the Tokin Tikka from April 15-21. The Indian-accented 4/20 taco starts with a homemade corn tortilla that is layered with arugula salad, rotisserie chicken, spicy tikka sauce, raita crema, hemp seeds and micro greens. The “tacos without borders” concept is known for its globe-trotting flavors, but hemp is new to the mix.
4. Feeding the munchies
The Smoke Show menu at Hopdoddy Burger Bar is a monthlong tribute to musicians believed to be marijuana-friendly. In the lineup at Phoenix-area locations are the Red Eyed Stranger Burger (a pork patty on a hemp- and oat-seeded bun) and the Young, Wild and Fries Shake (malted chocolate with an Oreo cookie-dusted french fry garnish.) On April 20 only, the chain is serving up the 420 Burger Remix, a munchies-satisfying special featuring a pizza bagel top bun, Cool Ranch-dusted french fries, Flamin’ Hot Cheetos ketchup and deep-fried Funyuns mayo on a taco patty.