Johnny, Kevin Jodrey and William Pedro took on the task of judging the Emerald Cup 2014.
Johnny, Kevin Jodrey and William Pedro took on the task of judging the Emerald Cup 2014.

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With the Emerald Cup less than two days away, the panel of 20 plus judges gathered one final time at Area 101 in Mendocino to select the best flower entries from an extraordinary pool. More than 600 entries were placed before the mercy of the judges’ keen palettes and discerning tastes.

The Emerald Cup is in its 11th year and is the longest running event of its type. Cultivators from around the state submit their outdoor flowers for judging and they had a record number of entries this year. People come together to celebrate cannabis, get educated from the workshops and panels and find out what the top strains are in California right now.

One Disqualified Because Indoor Won’t Do

For the first time in the Emerald Cup’s history, one killer strain was disqualified. All the judges loved it — many would have put it in their top 10 — but it was clear to many who are familiar with the Cherry strains that it was cultivated indoors.

How They Narrowed Down 600+ to a Top 20

They started with the top 40 picks and whittled it down to 20. Jars passed from judge to judge as they deliberated — sometimes loudly and with great passion — what strains were worth rolling up more than once, which ones had shown some mold, and which ones had lasting flavor all the way through the roach.

From the “real,” compiled top 20, all the judges put down the order they though those 20 strains should go in. Then Swami and Nick compiled the lists and came back with the ordered list of 20. Many judges picked the same strain as No. 1, and it did indeed come through as No. 1 in the end.

Tim Blake said it was important that all the judges agree on the order. And that turned out to not be difficult. The ordered list of top 20 was quickly agreed upon and approved.

Everyone at the judge’s meeting has been sworn to secrecy regrading who the winner is and what the winning flower is. All will be revealed at the Emerald Cup Awards Ceremony on Sunday!


    • The judges said they knew this Cherry strain so well that they could tell by the coloration and the development of the flower that it was clearly indoor. They let it go through the ranks in case it was light dep but upon a closer inspection of the strain by all judges, almost all voted to boot it because they considered it indoor. First time they’ve ever done that in the Emerald Cup so it’s not something they do lightly!

  1. Q: Where is a complete list of winners from all categories and why after more than 10 days post EC has this info not been made public?

    Q: When was the EC planning on lab testing the remaining 93 out of 95 edibles entered in this years cup — now that 3 winners (none labtested) in the edible category have been named.

    Q: Why did the organizers of the EC twice extend the deadline adding an additional month for new entries?

    Comment: This was my first and probably my last EC. I walked away feeling nothing short of disappoint and a huge lack of integrity in what was touted my many as the most prestigious cup of the year.
    Although there may have been a time when this event was worth attending, The Emerald Cup fell short in 2014 by a long shot.

  2. a community of growers supporting there buddies…….time to change the judging group…..judging 600 + flavors takes more time than a couple weeks…….and a handful of people…

  3. […] Not the roughly 800 entries submitted last year. Contest coordinator Jeb Berman said he can’t project the total they’ll receive, but there were more than anticipated. “When we scheduled a time to come pick up the entries and got an estimate of how many each place had so we knew how many boxes to bring, most of them told us they had 10 or 15. Those numbers quadrupled while we were sending drivers down.” […]

  4. just out of curiosity, can you post the entry number of the “Cherry” strain that was disqualified, Emerald Cup 2014?


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