Cannabis-Infused Wine: Reviving an Ancient Tradition

The popularity of cannabis-infused wine is soaring as legalization becomes a reality. But the use of “green wine” has been documented for centuries.

With new industry, comes new opportunity. Sometimes, this opportunity provides a foothold for groundbreaking innovations and inventions — creations that have the potential to change the world.

Other times, the new industry sheds a light on the benefits of older traditions. Traditions that can be repurposed and applied to the modern world. So while cannabis-infused wine may seem like the next best new invention, the practice actually dates all the way back to the 28th Century B.C.

A Brief History of Cannabis-Infused Wine

During the second century A.D., archeologists in China found records for a surgeon named Hua T’o. It was noted that he used wine fortified with cannabis resin to reduce pain during surgery. In addition, various religious groups drank psychoactive wine as part of their practice.

In Ancient Greece, Cults of Demeter and Persephone held yearly initiations involving cannabis wine. Also, early Christians and allegedly even Jesus Christ took sips of the green wine. Carl Ruck, a professor of classical studies at Boston University coined the term “entheogen,” when describing psychoactive used for religious ceremony. He says in comparison to early additions to wine like salamander venom,

“cannabis would be one of the less dangerous additives.”
Cannabis-infused wine
As early as 2737 B.C., it is believed the mythical Emperor Shen Neng of China was prescribing marijuana tea for the treatment of gout, rheumatism, malaria and, oddly enough, poor memory. Via Cosmos

Cannabis-Infused Wine for the 21st Century

Now with the aid of modern technology, ganjapreneurs and wine enthusiasts alike are looking to cash in on the ancient technique. One company, in particular, seems to be leading the way.

cannibis infused wine
Mary Jane Wine bottles. Via The Sun

Canna Vine is a commercially produced wine infused with a blend of high-end organically grown indica and sativa. The company is spearheaded by Lisa Molyneux, a cancer survivor, and owner of the late Santa Cruz dispensary “Greenway.” Molyneux creates the wine to produce a balanced sensation that is both uplifting and relaxing. Molyneaux and fellow owner Louisa Lindquist swear by the benefits of the product. In an interview with LA times, Lindquist says,

“Cannabis wine has been so effective as a stress reliever, as a mood elevator, and as a medicine…whatever I make I want it to be safe, made from pure ingredients and, hopefully, delicious.”

According to Insider, the process requires around a pound of marijuana. The weed is wrapped in a cheesecloth and added to a barrel of wine. There it sits nearly a year to ferment and repose. Once bottled and ready, the wine delivers a mellow “body high” without the “mental high” caused by THC. Canna Vine currently retails to only Californian medical marijuana users at $120-$440 per half-liter.

With legalization coming to Canada, there is a high possibility cannabis-infused wine becomes mainstream and available to everyday consumers.