Honey Stick

The honey stick by Alaska-based Igloo Glass is an affordable and easy way to try concentrates.

Using marijuana concentrates isn’t for everyone.

If good ol’ traditional combustion of bud is like drinking a beer, then dabbing is like drinking hard liquor.

But even that analogy doesn’t entirely capture what it’s like to dab. Consider the comparative complexity of dabbing — heating a specialized bowl with a blowtorch and dropping in a piece of wax or shatter — and it can be like taking gulps of vodka from a funnel.

Suffice it to say, dabbing takes some practice, and even then the occasional way-too-big-of-a-hit is still plenty possible.

Enter a Good Titrations-branded Grav Vapor Straw and Dish that was included in the VIP bag to the 420 Green Spring Concert and Expo in Wasilla, and my entire view of dabbing has changed. Grav isn’t the only maker of the vapor straw. There are others out there making dab straws like the Alaska-based Igloo Glass, which sells a $5 honey stick at stores like Anchorage’s Enlighten Alaska.

Instead of plunking down a piece of concentrate into a superheated quartz bowl and hoping for the best, a dab straw puts more control into the hands of the user. A blowtorch is still required as you’ll be heating up the tapered end of the straw, but it allows the user to take smaller, controlled hits.

You’ll poke the hot end of the straw into the concentrate (as long as it’s stored in a heat-safe container) while inhaling. Each poke vaporizes about the same small amount of concentrate, introducing some consistency where there wasn’t consistency in the past.

It also does a good job at maintaining the flavor of the concentrates if that’s something that’s important to you.

Think of it as a hummingbird taking a drink of nectar — there’s even a brand that makes deluxe versions of these straws called Nectar Collector that cross the $100 mark.

The Grav Vapor Straw is available for less than $20.

The hitch with these, though, is that the high heat and pressing motion have a chance at slowly deforming the tip and potentially rendering it useless. In two months of use, the Grav Vapor Straw is now slightly bent but still functioning. Looking online, there have been reports of some straws closing altogether, but there are guides about how to use the heat to reopen them.

With a generally low price of entry, dab straws are certainly one of the easiest ways to try concentrates.

— Matt Buxton, Anchorage

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