"Welcome to Psychedelicatessen, a weekly column exploring the world of cannabis cuisine, including recipes from the great chefs and ganjapreneurs who fuel our appetite for adventure."

The custom of combining cannabis with coffee goes way back to French artists and writers who frequented the infamous Club des Hachichins ("Club of the Hashish-Eaters") in the mid-1800s. At these gatherings, intellectual elites including Charles BaudelaireEugène Delacroix and Alexandre Dumas would mix crumbled up hashish into their coffee and talk late into the night. 

Mixing cannabis and caffeine has been popular ever since, with the combined effects of the two substances producing an alert but relaxed state conducive to creative work. Flash forward to the modern day, and you’ll find comedian Rob Cantrell rapping about wake-and-baking with “Coffee and Weed,” colloquially known as a “Hippie Speedball.”

Moving this proud tradition forward, today you can find many cannabis-infused caffeinated beverages for sale in dispensaries, or for a simple yet elegant pick-me-up, you can elevate your morning coffee by dissolving cannabis-infused chocolate into it. Blue Kudu, based in Denver, has captured a faithful fan base who swear by the high-dose, small portion size of their chocolate bars, precisely dosed to deliver anywhere from 40 to 225 milligrams of THC depending on the chosen product. 

Founded in 2011, the newly legal recreational market has allowed this small, family-run business to expand to over 150 retail stores and dispensaries in Colorado. Andrew Schrot, Managing Director for Blue Kudu, believes that “nationwide legalization is coming soon in the future, and we plan to expand to other states,” and that the novelty of non-combustible, cannabis-infused edibles will capture a large market share amongst people who would never consider smoking anything.  

When you consider how ubiquitous coffee is in our culture, it’s not hard to imagine Starbuck’s adding shots of cannabis chocolate to their drinks in a few years’ time! Or make your own at home with this easy recipe. Jeromy Jones, a Facebook friend of the fledgling edibles business, contributed this recipe for Blue Kudu Espresso Shots. Look for Blue Kudu at the upcoming U.S. Cannabis Cup on April 19-20 at Denver Mart, where they’ll be competing for top honors.

Blue Kudu Espresso Shots

Makes 5-6 shots

-1 whole Blue Kudu Hybrid Chocolate bar* (grated or finely chopped)
-4 oz. fresh brewed Marley Coffee espresso (hot)
-1 oz. milk, soy-milk or your favorite creamer
-5-6 tsp. whipped cream for topping

Pour hot espresso or coffee into a 1 qt. glass pitcher. Add chopped chocolate and milk. Whisk till froth is formed. Pour into shot glasses and top with whipped cream.

*Choose the Blue Kudu bar that’s dosed appropriately for you. Recreational stores carry bars with 40mg, 80mg or 100mg of THC, while medical patients can obtain higher doses of 225mg.