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!