I was masked up and distanced, at the shop for a to-go order within 24 hours of seeing the vid on Instagram.
The Lincoln Park brewery is a few week’s deep into offering Lucent CBD Water — seemingly the first in town to crack into the market of an NA bubbly infused with cannabinoids that might or might not tamp down your anxiety or help you sleep better.
A Bent Paddle employee described it as tasting like grapefruit LeCroix — a fair comparison. The CBD water pours opaque, though, and its carbonation has more sizzle. It’s a fresh blast of citrus, refreshing and clean. It doesn’t walk or talk like an IPA, but it feels special in your hand — which is a requirement if you’re going to sip something that isn’t a beer while at a brewery.
Bent Paddle’s list of NA offerings, before the addition of the water, included root beer, cold press coffee, kombucha.
“We’re always looking for balance,” said Pepin Young, director of taproom operations. “We noticed there’s a trend of people who are sober curious or looking to find an alternate to alcoholic beverages in general.”
With a few CBD aficionados on site, Young said, there was enough personal connection for the company to go forward with infusing sparkling water. They didn’t need any new equipment to create the fizzy water, which adds locally made CBD and high quality fruit ingredients, he said. The recipe calls for 10 mg per 16 ounces.
While it’s non-alcoholic, Bent Paddle won’t sell it to anyone younger than 18.
CBD oil is legal and available for purchase in splashy roadside shops or at the Whole Foods Co-op. Cannabinoid is taken from a hemp plant and the result is non-psychotropic.
The big Q, of course, is does it work?
Who knows. I have anxiety and age and sport-induced aches and inflammations. My CBD intake has ranged from drops to gummies to candies and recently, an impulse buy at the register Zenith Bookstore, CBD chocolate. And my experiences have ranged from meh to the kind of chill out that makes you wish there was an entire channel for just jellyfish.
“Each person experiences it in their own way,” Young said, adding that CBD is meant to relieve, not induce. “CBD isn’t going to chemically change your peripheral vision or change your mood, it’s more of a reduction that you may be feeling that might be negative.”
Anyway, jellyfish or not, it’s a fun and fresh drink.