Granddaddy Purple/ Photo by Baynard Woods / Courtesy Democracy In Crisis.

Though it’s difficult to capture in our photo, Granddaddy Purple is a marvel to stare into up close. The way its core green-tinted, Grimace-purple color is cut by veins of burnt orange and red with dandruff dots of white crystal, it’s like looking at the cover of Can’s “Soon Over Babaluma” or holding one of those far-off Pop Art-designed planet sets from “Star Trek: The Original Series” between your thumb and forefinger.

Granddaddy Purple, mind you, is a mix of Big Bud and Purple Urkel, which immediately begs the question, “OMG, WHY THE HELL IS THIS NOT CALLED BIG URKEL?” I mean come on, what a lost opportunity. The way pot people play fast and loose with good taste, or really with good-bad taste—to steal a phrase from John Waters—is endlessly disappointing. In a world where Berry White exists or Zappa-esque, jam-band-song-sounding nonsense such as Big Buddha Cheese is a classic, the decision to not dub this Big Urkel and conjure up the image of a massive, oversized Jaleel White makes no damn sense.

In all of the ways that matter, though, Granddaddy Purple delivers, thanks to it being a 50/50 indica and sativa mix that makes you really, really relax. I smoked some out of a big bong—the kind you should arguably not still own or use into your early ‘30s—and got immediately pounded by a coughing fit hit. Smoke didn’t so much enter my lungs as crawl down my throat and grab onto my lungs and poke, prod, and pull. With my throat and chest aching, my head tilting back like a newborn baby’s, and my eye sockets vibrating from the aforementioned massive bong rip (no other way to describe how stupidly I inhaled here . . . this was an epic rip) I just let GDP do its thing. The night was over and I was nothing more than thud on the couch. Though this wasn’t one of those menacing, dead-in-the-head kind of highs that some unforgiving strains have, it was a halfway out-of-body high that transitioned nicely back to being sober or falling asleep.

Click here and you’ll see Baynard Woods praise a mix of Granddaddy Purple, Blackberry Kush, and Northern Lights, which he calls Grand Black Northern, and which seemed to foment a smoking habit revolution in his household. He called Grand Black Northern “almost a miracle” in the way that it calmed him down, shifted his productivity habits, and at the same time transitioned him from a pretty much smoking-free flu interregnum and back over to the jacked-up sativa smoking he was usually all about. So reviewing Granddaddy Purple, just one part of the beloved Grand Black Northern, is a bit like reviewing say, just the drums on a dense, free jazz-like tapestry of sound sort of record, though that’s actually not far off from what GDP’s like on its own anyway: tough and a bit overbearing with a rhythm that’s hard to parse or predict, though if you let go and let it do its thing, its stubborn intensity is its own reward.

  • Strength: 10
  • Nose: Watered-down Welch’s Grape Juice
  • Euphoria: 9
  • Existential dread: 4
  • Freaking out when a crazy person approaches you: 4
  • Drink pairing: Watered-down Welch’s Grape Juice
  • Music pairing: Ginger Baker’s Air Force, “Ginger Baker’s Air Force”
  • Rating: 7

Brandon Soderberg was the Director Of Operations and is a cofounder of Baltimore Beat. He is the coauthor of the book I Got a Monster. Previously, he was editor-in-chief of Baltimore City Paper. His work...

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