If you like seeing hash porn on your Instagram feed, you’ve probably come across some shots by Extracts Daily.
Mitch — the man behind the lens — is an incredibly talented photographer and videographer who’s made his niche in the hash scene. While based in Colorado, he’s traveled internationally to work with top brands and makers and capture cutting-edge events. He’s also a small-batch grower producing living soil flower, single source rosin, and the star of today’s Q&A series…solventless edibles!
Extracts Daily “Rosin Rings” have all the makings of an ideal munchie. They taste out of this world, have just the right texture, and are perfectly packaged. Plus they smack.
So for our latest Q&A series, I met up with Mitch in Denver to chat about what’s most important in a gummy, why you should experiment with different edible recipes, how he branded a small-batch solventless product, and more…
Combining Passions for Cultivation & Creativity
How did your love for hash develop alongside your talents with the camera and lead you to start Extracts Daily?
I got into photography in high school but didn’t smoke until I was 19. When I started smoking, I would take pictures of the buds I was getting because I was getting some really beautiful flower. I’d also take pictures of me smoking, and I actually keep one of my first-ever self-portraits on my phone just as a reminder of how far I’ve come. I’m like 20 years old in it, ripping a bong, just absolutely getting after it!
Fast forward a bit and the first dab I ever took was in 2011. It was Durban Poison and I was obsessed with the flavor. For me, the flavor of things is so important. When I take tolerance breaks, I almost miss just tasting the dabs as much as I miss getting high. So that’s what really hooked me and brought me to eventually making hash for the first time.
This was in 2013 or 2014 and I tried making dry ice hash with some plants that randomly grew in my parent’s backyard. I got maybe a half ounce of some decent stuff. It almost bubbled — not quite, but it did get me extremely stoned. That’s what first made me realize the potency of cannabinoids and got me excited to learn more.
Over those years I’d taken a break from photography, but I picked it back up because I started growing myself and wanted to document the process. I met Nikka T shortly after that and asked him if I could take pictures of his stuff for free just to have something to photograph. That was the first time I took pictures of actual ice hash rosin instead of just flower rosin, which is what I’d been making.
After photographing and trying it for the first time, it just changed my life. I immediately was in love with rosin. Nowadays, it’s kind of just intersected where it all culminates together and I was able to start a business that involves the two. I feel very grateful for that. It feels awesome that I was able to let those two passions merge at some point into Extracts Daily.
How has seeing the way so many other makers and brands operate when you’re capturing content for them helped you in your own lab?
It’s been a hugely beneficial help! I’m somebody who, before I do anything, has to research it to an exhaustive effort. Being able to be in other people’s labs is the best of both worlds for me because I get to make things that look beautiful, but I also get to learn. I’m extremely grateful that a lot of these people I get to learn from are some of the best hash makers around.
It’s for sure given me a leg up with my own single source. By the third round, I felt like I was making some pretty dang good rosin but it’s because I’ve seen countless other people make it with so many different techniques. I could pick and choose what I wanted to try and now I’ve found what I like and what works best for me.
It has also made me feel a little less worried about doing something “the wrong way” because I got to see how many different ways there are to do the same thing. And anytime you can learn a lesson without having to sacrifice your own material, it’s very nice. Especially because sometimes I only have so much material being a small batch grower!
As a small batch grower, tell me a little bit more about how you’re running your garden. What are your preferred methods? Are you breeding and pheno hunting in-house?
I’m a living soil grower and I do both indoor and outdoor. Indoor, I’m running under LED lights. Outdoor, it’s just been under the open sun this year but I’m hoping to try some greenhouse to see the difference.
As far as growing specifically for resin versus flower, one of the most important things to me when growing for resin is controlling the environment so that it’s not gonna be too hot. When you start getting up in those high 80s, the cuticle of the plant is harmed in a way that is not beneficial for hash production. It’s way easier to control temperatures inside, so what I like about growing indoors is that ability to fine-tune the environment for hash specifically. However what I noticed about outdoor is the flavor and effect is, in my opinion, way better. So personally, I enjoy growing outdoors more but it can be easier to optimize yields and plant health indoors.
As far as pheno hunting, I’ve only been able to do a couple here and there. The max I’m doing is like 10 different phenos of one plant and that’s mostly a space constraint. But last year I did make my first seeds crossing Papaya Syrup from Oni Seed Co. with Purple Ice Water from Bloom Seed Co. I happened to have a male Purple Ice Water plant that was just beautiful, and I thought why waste the pollen? Plus, I really liked both flavors separately and figured they could be even better together.
This year, I grew some of those seeds outside and I made hash from the two females I ended up getting. It made some really, really tasty rosin. I got a lot of good feedback from it and I personally really enjoyed it, so it lit a fire under my ass to do a lot more breeding and selecting for flavors that I like.
Also fine-tuning things to be more of a medicine that works for my body specifically. Certain strains like Garlic Juice just do wonders for me. It settles my stomach, if I have pain in my body it kind of tempers it down, and it also gets me feeling more creative and ready to work. My goal with breeding is trying to find specific effects like that. Basically, I want it to be so that I can have a medicine cabinet of hash and choose the effect that I need based on how I’m feeling that day.
Talking Tools & Tech
What are some of the must-have tools and tech in your lab?
A lot of the products that I use come from Rosin Evolution, and a big part of that is because they’ve been awesome in helping me learn and supplying me with the things I need to learn more while I’m making hash. Press-wise, just out of everything I’ve used so far, I like Low Temp. It’s just pump, press, rosin. Super user-friendly. For freeze dryers, I use Harvest Right, but that’s one category where I’m interested to see what other people are bringing to the market now because there are finally multiple brands coming out. It’d be cool to see some technology that allows you to get more specific with how you want to tailor your drying.
One tool that’s a must-have for me is a metal spoon because it retains cold better, especially when you’re working with a greasy strain. A lot of what I grow tends to be greasy, so I learned this very quickly! A cold spoon does better about not just pushing the hash around and forming a greasy rail along the side of it, which ends up sticking to the bag and makes collection harder down the road. So pro tip: metal spoon.
Are you using any automation in your washing process?
I’m currently hand stirring, but that’s just because I’ve never had a harvest big enough where I really needed to use a machine for it. Plus since I’m still learning, I think I get a better feel for the resin using my hands. I can actually feel and see the difference between plants and how the resin reacts. It gives me more room to learn and grow, so it’s just a personal preference at this point.
However, seeing some of the machines like the Hashtek that are coming out nowadays is making me question trying it out a little bit more. So that may change down the line!
We’re here today to talk about solventless edibles tech specifically — you make these Rosin Rings that are awesome. What made you decide to venture into edibles in the first place? Was it always gummies or were there other iterations?
The first reason I wanted to start making edibles is because after I started smoking more solventless, I ended up saving like an ounce of reclaim. It looked nice, it was still a beautiful golden color and smelled pretty good. It felt like it was a waste to just toss it. I decided I’d make some edibles with it but wasn’t sure what kind just yet.
Then I saw Curtis Terps making some basic stir-at-home edibles with Jolly Ranchers. I did that with some Starbursts and a few other things first. I ended up actually making rice krispies and cereal bars more than anything else. After a while I got sick of how much sugar I would have to eat just to get stoned so I decided to switch over to gummies and found a recipe online from Diamond Delight Edibles.
As I kept learning and trying more things, I figured out I really like eating hash, too. I felt I got a more well-rounded high when I had different cannabinoid delivery services as opposed to just smoking. So whether it was in my lungs and my stomach with edibles or my mouth with a tincture — I felt better when I had multiple forms of it.
I just really enjoyed making the edibles and loved how they made me feel. I kept dialing things in until I came up with the recipe I use now!
Branding Small-Batch Solventless Edibles
How did you go from experimenting with different kinds of edibles at home for personal use to branding a product?
I was making care packages for my close friends during COVID and dropping them off around town. I was like, “Let me get you all stoned at least because we’re all fucking struggling.” I just had so much fun with it, that was first and foremost.
Then more and more people liked the stuff I was making, and so I started doing it more. It kept growing organically and got to the point where it felt like it was worth branding and actually making into something. Once I did that, it all just took off even more to be honest.
People really like the bright tin and how the gummies look inside with the colored sugar on them. These are little touches that I add because aesthetically pleasing things please me so much. The reason I do it for others is because I’m doing what I’d like for myself. It just so happened that other people liked it too.
Speaking of those perfectly Instagrammable pink tins — where did the inspiration for the branding come from and how did you bring it to life through your products?
Shoutout again to Curtis Terps for the inspiration, because seeing him kind of run away with his branding and spend time on branding himself is what started things. He was the first person I saw doing it from the ground up who wasn’t already established, and it made me realize, “Oh, you can just do that. Make something you like, get it out of your brain, and put it into the world.” After seeing him do that, I knew I wanted to go in a certain direction with it.
I’ve always been a fan of pink so I just felt like it worked for the brand. I started with mylar bags and then my buddy Chris of Conventional Dabber sent me a photo of this black tin he had found one day. It clicked in my brain to use that because I was sick of my gummies getting squished in the mylar bags. Once I saw that, it just ignited something under me where I wanted to spend so much more time on my own branding.
My buddy Nathan who I’ve known since middle school has done all of my graphic design work. He came up with the logo. He changed my life because he was the one who took all the thoughts and ideas in my head and gave me a vision.
I actually just did a little brand refresh and ordered new packaging for the Rosin Rings from Missouri Packaging Co. They did all my stickers for the top and bottom, and I’m still debating if I want to do special branding for each collab or have different colors for different flavors. I recently did a rosin collab with Tapatio Melts and I loved the way our co-branded labels came out. Being small batch, having to print individual labels for each drop can quickly get overwhelming but it’s something I’d love to start doing more of!
Focusing on Flavor & Effects With Solventless Edibles
In your opinion, why solventless edibles when there are other options out there for inputs?
Cheaper isn’t always better, you know, and that’s kind of what I live my life by. Especially when you’re putting things into your body. I like to dab high-quality, great-smelling rosin that is full of flavor when it goes into my lungs so why would I not want to do the same for inside my body, you know?
When I eat distillate edibles, they work but they almost always make me feel tired. No matter the edible, it’s always the same feeling of being groggy. It’s just kind of a flat high — one-dimensional with not too much to it.
Trying solventless edibles, I felt it was a more well-rounded high, it was multi-dimensional. I wasn’t just bogged down and groggy. Some of my pain subsided and I felt more creative. Overall it just felt like my body accepted it a little bit better. Something about solventless just piques my interest more, and I feel safer working with that than other forms as well.
With so many edibles (and especially gummies) on the market these days, do you have any tips for standing out and seeing success?
Honestly, the main thing is to have fun with it. Try new flavors that just sound good to you that you haven’t seen before. Play around with vegan edibles, pectin, gelatin —all the different forms. You never know what you’re going to find that you like.
There are recipes and resources online, even powder mixtures where you literally just mix water, your rosin, and your surfactant then put it in a mold and wait. If you’re interested in getting started just go for it and enjoy yourself.
Product-wise, the most important thing for me when it comes to gummies specifically is texture and flavor. Effect too of course, but it’s important that the flavor is there and it has that bounce that a gummy should have. Aesthetics are nice, but they’re not everything. They can be a great way to differentiate your brand, but I think taste, feel, and effect are most important at the end of the day.
You have some unique gummy flavors on your menu like coconut blue razz — how did you come up with the combinations and do you have a favorite?
My personal favorite has gotta be between the apple mango and the strawberry splash. I just started mixing flavors that I liked personally and going from there. Then I realized I should have multiple flavors available, not just one at a time. So I made a set of standard flavors and started running with them. This makes it easier for people when they’re choosing off the menu as well because they already know what they like and it’s not gonna be a surprise. I know I’m not the only picky person in the world!
Now that I have my core lineup of flavors, I enjoy picking which I’m going to use for each batch. When I cook, I know what smells go together, and so I kind of do the same with the pairings. I’ll get a particularly good batch of rosin to work with and try to decide which flavor it would go with best.
For example, I’ve had some trop material before that I paired with my tropical wave gummy flavor. All those tangy tropical notes played off each other perfectly. But I’ve also paired trop strains with the apple mango flavor, which brought out more of that orange terp and made it pop in an unexpected way.
I know you worked with Aleks on our simple rosin gummies calculator. Have you had a chance to play around with some ‘single source’ solventless edibles that have no additional flavorings other than what comes from the rosin?
I haven’t yet, but that time collaborating with Aleks has inspired me to! We were talking about this Real Cannabis Chris material we both saw that was just exceptional and smelled so good. He brought up a good point — why not showcase that as the flavor? It got me thinking for sure.
I’m actually doing an upcoming collab with Chris and playing with some potential new gummy flavors for that. I think for one of the batches I want to do a “flavorless” gummy and let the hash be the flavor. We’ll see how things turn out!
Speaking of flavors, your head stash is one of the best I’ve ever seen and you’re always pulling epic jars out of the vault when I see you at events around town! What are some favorites you’ve been seshing on lately?
It’s so hard for me to choose but there are a few that have stood out more than anything recently. One is the Garlic Juice from Tree City Solventless. Like I said before, I just love that flavor and its effects are really medicinal for me. I dabbed the entire jar in probably a week. I literally could not stop. The flavor was so loud it was nose-tingling — super garlicky but with this kerosene sharp gas flavor that cut through.
Real Cannabis Chris, his Michael Jordan 23 I got to try at The Smoking Jacket, that was unreal. I got different flavors depending on the temperature I went in on, and I don’t experience that often. I also got a different flavor dabbing it out of an Indux Labs versus a rig, which was mind-blowing to me.
The Kush Mints from Portal Provisions is another one. I have the same cut in my garden but he is just a phenomenal grower. It was some of the loudest Kush Mints I’ve ever had. That’s another one that has effects that do good things for my body, so it’s always going to be a standard one I love.
After I took a tolerance break recently, I took a dab of TerpWizard’s Sour Diesel x Blueberry Watermelon and almost had a religious spiritual experience. It was borderline psychedelic. One of the best highs I’ve had since I started smoking. That one was up there, if not the top.
And maybe one more…oh it’s so hard…I’ve gotta go with the Honey Banana from Real Deal Resin. I tried that one down in Mexico City on a recent trip and instantly fell in love. It’s just so good.
The last honorable mention is Papaya from Mighty Melts which is one of my favorite papayas ever. There’s more but I could go on for days, so I think I’ll keep it to those.