Trulieve recently dropped the first two strains of flower to come from their partnership with Connected Cannabis: El Jefe and Nightshade.
Disclaimer: If you’re coming here from the Florida Medical Trees subreddit, there is an elephant in the room with this drop that I’ll go ahead and get out of the way: The discussion around this flower on that subreddit has been a bit contentious due to the price tag, which is the most expensive I’ve ever seen in Florida at a whopping $65/eighth. The disagreement with this price tag is understandable (I’m one of those who disagrees with it myself – we will get into that later). The problem is that some who feel very passionately about this subject, have resorted to personally attacking other patients who have the disposable income and have opted to purchase the Alien Labs/Connected flower despite the high price tag.
My opinion is that we should draw the line there. I am a strong advocate for speaking up against bad business practices, unethical and immoral acts, etc – but when we are talking about business practices, the discussion should focus on the entity itself and not patients who partake in it. I realize we can argue the semantics of how compliance is encouraging the practice in question, etc. – but that is my personal stance – let’s not attack fellow patients; save it for the corporations.
With that out of the way, this review will focus on the flower itself. I will speak my thoughts on the quality vs. price at the end of the review, but I don’t want that to be a distraction from objectively looking at the product itself.
For those who don’t know, Connected Cannabis is a California-based cannabis company (same creators as Alien Labs) that has been around for many years now, and has been one to research and develop many “exotic” strains. More of those will be coming to Florida in the coming weeks and months, according to their social media reps and Trulieve. We’re also told that Alien Labs and Connected trained the growers who eventually moved to Florida to grow their flower here; this way their brand is consistent across the country.
I’ve managed to get an eighth of El Jefe and Nightshade a few weeks ago once it was released for online ordering. Due to the holidays I’ve been a bit behind on getting reviews up, but we’re here now!
On to the review —
Price at time of review: $65/eighth
Like the Alien Labs Kryptochronic flower that I reviewed last month, it’s easy to tell that this is different from your run-of-the-mill Trulieve flower. This eighth of El Jefe is caked in trichomes and looks to have been allowed to grow and mature well, as evidenced by amber trichomes mixed in all over the buds.
Unfortunately (especially at $65/eighth), this El Jefe isn’t quite as good as the Alien Labs Kryptochronic here. It is slightly dry and seems to break apart easily. It is a little sticky, but not what I expect at this price point.
It breaks down fairly fluffy and spongy, but it still feels like it just missed the mark here. At $65, you’ve got to get close to perfection; while this El Jefe is good, it does not quite meet the standards I had in mind.
Appearance/Cure Rating: 7.00/10.00
The smell of El Jefe upon opening the jar is immediately strong, reeking of sweet tangerine citrus, hash, and hints of gas and earthy notes. It reminds me a lot of the old Clementine flower that MUV used to carry. This isn’t your typical terpinolene “lemon floor cleaner” smell either, but a much more full and (in my opinion) pleasant smell of orange tangerine citrus. In some ways, it reminds me of the sweet & sour aspects that I have sometimes smelled in Sour Diesel flower as well.
When El Jefe is broken down or ground up, however, it takes on a completely unique smell here. I am surprised at just how garlicky, funky, and stinky the flower turns when it is broken or ground up. There may even be a hint of a cheese smell in there. None of these smells are very apparent right out of the jar, but just completely blast forward when you get into the buds. The sweet citrus hash is still there, but it is dominated by the funky, musty garlic.
The taste when smoked is sweet, spicy, earthy, and hashy. Again, completely different from the smells of the flower, minus the hashy notes.
Overall, this is a really enjoyable strain in this category. The nearly 2.6% terpenes translate to the smell and taste nicely.
Smell/Taste Rating: 7.20/10.00
Like the Alien Labs Kryptochronic, this Connected El Jefe has good, well-rounded “classic” cannabis effects.
Of the two Connected strains that have been released so far (El Jefe and Nightshade), I found El Jefe to be the more balanced hybrid, or even a bit sativa-leaning. The effects come on quickly, with the feelings first noticeable behind the eyes and through warm full-body relaxation.
This seems like a good strain for general lounging and relaxing, leisurely activities. It does not jump out to me as an energetic or motivating strain, but it isn’t so heavy that you can’t function, either. It could potentially be an all-day strain, with lower doses best for the early hours, and heavier doses best reserved for the late afternoon and evening.
I asked myself the same question with El Jefe as I did when I tried the Kryptochronic flower: are these effects really all that different or better than lower-priced flower? Unfortunately, the answer (on average) is: “not really”.
Possibly good for treating:
- Moderate aches and pains
- Headaches and migraines
- Moderate nausea/gastrointestinal issues
- General Relaxation
I’m definitely no medical doctor, so please take the preceding conditions only as my own personal observations from using this strain and having experience with a multitude of different cannabis strains. Everybody is different, and every body reacts differently to various medications.
Effects Rating: 7.00/10.00
Overall Rating: 7.06/10.00
Overall, I would best describe El Jefe as a “good” hybrid strain from Trulieve and Connected.
So with all that being said – I have to say that I do not feel this flower is worth the $65. Do I regret getting it? Absolutely not. It’s good and it is different from a lot of other options, especially since I can’t order from The Flowery or Jungle Boys.
Truthfully, I feel this is what the $50 flower should be, if we’re going to have “premium” options. I understand that more attention and time/labor was given to the product; it shows in the final result. But considering that I have comparable options in my cabinet right now that I paid less than half of $65 for, it’s hard to think of this as anything other than a “every once in a while” situation if I have any extra disposable income. Unfortunately for many Floridians, that is not often or ever a reality.
Despite my ramblings, this is good flower. If you have the funds and you want to try it, do it. If you will never pay more than $50 eighth and will never try this, I completely understand that as well.
Happy New Year to all of you from FLMCC! I’ve already got about 7-8 more flower reviews queued up to write; I’ve just been busy with the holiday season and haven’t had time to get to the site this month until now – so know that this is the first of many new reviews slated for the coming weeks. As promised during my initial September 2022 return from hiatus, FLMCC.net has been updated with 2-4 new reviews per month, and that will continue (or be exceeded) throughout this year too.
I look forward to another great year with all of you in 2023!
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