It’s been four years since Colorado voted to legalize marijuana. Since then, the cannabis industry has become the fastest-growing business sector in the state. Now a billion-dollar industry, marijuana has truly become a part of the Colorado lifestyle with dispensaries popping up faster than Starbucks. Slowly but surely, the cannabis industry is shaking its stoner image, as everyone from small business owners to CEOs of major companies are investing and/or partaking. To keep up with such a lucrative industry, 420-friendly events have popped up around the city, from joint and sushi rolling classes to yoga and weed combos. But there’s one that lately got our attention: For a luxurious evening of chef-driven cuisine, music, and of course cannabis, experience a night out with Mason Jar Event Group.
Established in 2014, Mason Jar Event Group has crafted experiences focused on luxe cannabis culture, dining, and music. Known for its swanky dinner affairs—complete with long banquet tables, crystal glasses, china wear, and quaint flower arrangements—Mason Jar Event Group has produced elevated experiences centered around cannabis like no other.
Founder Kendal Norris—an avid cannabis user who once hosted private cannabis dinners in her own home—decided to start the company as a way to tell a new story about cannabis. “I became inspired after personally meeting with cannabis industries, discovering how they got started, and how they’ve tried to maintain a positive image,” she says. “I wanted to do a series of celebrations to showcase this niche community.”
Thus was born Mason Jar. The company promotes a lineup of elevated experiences surrounded by cannabis, from swanky dinner parties inside the Boulder Collective, to Yoga with a View, an outdoor yoga class complete with breakfast and cannabis pairings. The event pops up all throughout the Front Range, from the mountains of Lyons to the heart of Denver. But don’t worry about the drive, as the company also provides shuttle service to and from the events (allowing for safe transportation as well as a little pre-gaming).
To craft the perfect pairing, Norris chooses a local chef for each event, collaborating with local favorites such as “Top Chef” winner Hosea Rosenberg and, most recently, Creative Director and Executive Chef of Lola Coastal Mexican, Jamey Fader. The two then go through the arduous process of picking the right strain, taking into the consideration the flavor, aroma, and overall feeling. “It’s a collaborative effort,” explains Norris. “We meet with the chefs at a dispensary and learn about the lineage and the history behind a strain or a product. We then choose our favorites, while the chefs have the task of picking a food that will complement it. Most chefs have never done it before–it’s truly an exciting challenge to take on!”
The pairings aren’t just limited to bud, either, but span the many cannabis products Colorado companies have to offer. “For many people, our event is the first access point to a variety of different strains and products in the cannabis industry,” explains Norris. “We like to offer a nice slice of what is out there.”
The January dinner offered Neos Electronic Vaporization Oil, a vape pen that vapes top quality bud, a variety of concentrated resin from Olio, and the super sleek Pax Era Vaporizer, packed with Panama Punch Era from The Clinic. Of course, to keep in line with the legality of selling marijuana, guests have to purchase their pairings from a local dispensary before attending the event.
For the January soirée, Chef Fader showcased a menu of Mexican cuisine, exemplified in dishes like Hamachi Organic Salmon Tiradito and Braised Oxtail, each paired with a special resin or strain. Even the dessert, The Spiced Chocolate Caked crafted with hibiscus jam, had a delectable pairing, as guests were encouraged to shave chocolate from Blue Kudu’s Cherry Almond Dark Chocolate Bar on top.
Whether you are an experienced “cannasseur” or a newbie looking to explore the scene, Mason Jar Event Group is an event sure to please all. For first time users, enjoy at your own pace, ask a lot of questions, and prepare to be wowed by an evening of arts, cannabis, and culture.
Want to elevate your 4/20? The next event from Mason Jar Event Group will be held Thursday, April 20, at the Space Gallery in Denver. Request an invitation to the event here.
By Morgan Carter, Editor