Abdullah Saeed is the host of "Bong Appétit" on Viceland. Up-and-coming chefs cook haute cannabis cuisine. (Courtesy of Viceland)

Culture

TV Review: ‘Bong Appétit’ cooks up cannabis cuisine

It used to be that the extent of edible marijuana offerings were the old standbys – pot brownies, cookies and Rice Krispies treats. Any dish using the reduction of butter with weed leaves was eligible to be infused. Usually, these items were far from delicious, and their effects were unpredictable at best. Every batch was a roll of the dice on the taste and potency.

That was then, but the TV series “Bong Appétit” airing on Viceland is now. The show features dinner parties thrown by up-and-coming chefs with gourmet cannabis-infused dishes the star of the table. Host Abdullah Saeed throws elaborate dinners using a solid recipe for success. A chef makes sure the entrees are prepared to be delightful, and a marijuana expert makes sure the potency is correct.

Quality gourmet food and spices are used, and the cannabis content can come in many forms – from flower and extract to odorless and tasteless distillate. As you might imagine, the results are overwhelmingly enjoyed by the attendees at each party.

Among the dishes created on during the first season are Cannabis Smoked Tuna, Canabutter Braised Beef Cheek in Honey and Soy, as well as hibiscus & habanero or persimmon ice cream. All of which can be paired with a number of beverages, including weed wine. Culinary techniques such as molecular gastronomy with marijuana legitimize the movement and take it to a “higher” level. Most of the chefs abstain from partaking until the dishes are complete, but guests usually enjoy the fruits of their labor along the process. Taste is subjective with people and their food, but most attendees agree the results are a success.

The first 10-episode run which airs at 10:30 p.m. Wednesdays on TV channel Viceland run the gamut of guests, from young chefs to a Ganja grandma. Themes range from holiday parties to breakfast. There’s even a weed taco night complete with a cannabis-filled piñata.

It’s fun to watch a reality show with a distorted perspective and to become immersed in the parties as they unfold. After all, we aren’t talking Martha Stewart or Julia Child here. This is Anthony Bourdain with weed instead of booze, and Los Angeles instead of Buenos Aires. Everyone is having a good time and you can see it as they both get the munchies and cure them at the same time. Plus, it will definitely get the wheels of your mind spinning for your next dinner party.


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