The late Jack Herer – the legendary hemp activist, agitator and author of the hemp legalization bible The Emperor Wears No Clothes – enjoys a permanent high position in the legal cannabis world, even among young people who have no idea who he is. This is the status you enjoy when one of the best known and most popular sativa strains is named after you.
But the pure Jack Herer – roaring, soaring and fruity – is not for everyone. Like his outspoken namesake, Jack sometimes needs to chill out.
Black Jack is such a softening attempt. Here, a portion of Jack Herer is crossed with Black Domina, a dark-and-musty indica-dominant strain that has largely disappeared from the menus of Northern California dispensaries in the past six years. That’s a shame, because Black Domina has a uniquely earthy funk reminiscent of skunky strains from Prohibition days – in a good way – and a relaxed, mellow buzz.
So what happens when you combine the high with the low?
Our Black Jack looked modest, with a small, nickel-sized top that didn’t shine like a trichome diamond — but, but all the flavor and effects of Hemperor’s namesake were there. As you would expect with a combination like this, the highs aren’t that high, but the dominant strain is definitely the Jack.
My lips were smacked with the strong dominant notes of fruit and my head was buzzing with the well-known cerebral effects. Thanks to the Domina’s earthy, almost peppery influence, things softened a little faster than with a straight Jack, leaving plenty of room to think about the differences between the Earth and the sky long enough before the relaxation kicked in.
A yellow-green top that seemed almost dusty because it easily fell apart in my fingertips – which were then covered in trichomes. (Jack Herer is known for his tall, spindly, hard-to-grow plants, so that trait is definitely dominant.)
You get that tangerine and fruity nose from the Jack, but there’s a savory meatiness to it – a funk or a musk, you might say, due to the earthy, indica-dominant Domina.
It’s all fruit on the dry hit of a freshly rolled joint, with the slightly tart sweetness of tangerine. The taste hits the back of your mouth with other juicy fruit notes in one fell swoop. It’s almost lip-smacking sweet. After a few hits, some more spicy notes of pepper and limonene started to appear. More complex than it seemed at first glance.
Jack was king, with a mind-buzzy, uplifting head-dominant high out of the gate.
Depression and pain seem to be easiest to resolve with Black Jack, which can be a little too spicy for someone who needs to sleep or calm their mind.
Not top notch, but a good break from pure sativas, for a day when you are energized and activated while a little bit of mellow is important, or for a relaxing boost to start the evening.
Photo by Jessica Christian