Page 1

LAS VEGAS

THE NEW NORMAL

{plus}

Happiness

Celebrating an Illusive State

Foliage

12.2018

A Taste of Spain without the Bullsh*t

! F W

To Restore Health

Loving our Best Friends


sensimag.com DECEMBER 2018 3


4 DECEMBER 2018 Las Vegas


ISSUE 10 // VOLUME 1 // 12.2018

18

EVERY JOYFUL DAY Celebrate, explore, and define your happiness.

FEATURES

SP EC IAL R EP OR T

36 The Wonder Of Dogs

For many of us, life without animal companions would be a lesser life.

42 Kray-Kray: This Plant Heals

Kratom shows promise in treating depression, opioid withdrawal, and other ailments. Of course it’s being villified.

FEELING THE LOVE Dog = undying devotion.

36

42

MORE THAN A MIRACLE Nature shares another cure.

every issue 07 Editor’s Note 08 The Buzz 13 AskAngie

LITTLE DIFFERENCES

14 TasteBuds

OLÉ PAMPLONA COCKTAILS & TAPAS

18 LifeStyle

EXPLORE HAPPINESS

20 TravelWell

WINTER IS COMING

26 HomeMade

ICY + TOASTY

32 HighProfile

READY, SET, COOK, SMOKE

48 The Scene

CIRCUS COUTURE

50 HereWeGo

NATIVE SON

Sensi magazine is published monthly by Sensi Media Group LLC. © 2018 SENSI MEDIA GROUP LLC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

sensimag.com DECEMBER 2018 5


sensi magazine ISSUE 10 VOLUME 1 12.2018

EXECUTIVE FOLLOW US

Ron Kolb ron@sensimag.com CEO, SENSI MEDIA GROUP

Tae Darnell tae@sensimag.com PRESIDENT, SENSI MEDIA GROUP

Alex Martinez alex@sensimag.com CHIEF ADMINISTRATIVE OFFICER

sensimediagroup

EDITORIAL Stephanie Wilson stephanie@sensimag.com EDITOR IN CHIEF

Debbie Hall debbie.hall@sensimag.com MANAGING EDITOR, SENSI LAS VEGAS

Leland Rucker leland.rucker@sensimag.com SENIOR EDITOR

Robyn Griggs Lawrence CONTRIBUTING EDITOR sensimagazine

Ricardo Baca Dr. Angie McCartney askangie@sensimag.com COLUMNISTS

Dawn Garcia, Ryan Koller, Jake Larowe, Trevor Schneider CONTRIBUTING WRITERS

A RT & D E S I G N Jamie Ezra Mark jamie@akersmediagroup.com sensimag

CREATIVE DIRECTOR

Rheya Tanner, Wendy Mak, Josh Clark, Deb Matlock akers@sensimag.com DESIGN & LAYOUT

BUSINESS & A D M I N I S T R AT I V E

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BEING

editor’s

NOTE

Thomas Jefferson wrote in the Constitution that the pursuit of happiness is an inalienable right. This does not mean find-

ing happiness is automatic. Our right is to attain happiness, whatever that means to each of us. What defines happiness to me has certainly changed over the years.

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the resale value than sentimentality, but the memory also brings me enjoyment. A nice glass of wine conveys a sense of gratification. I feel delighted when I reconnect with friends found on social media. An anticipated romantic date produces a sense of excitement. I love my cats, and their presence creates security and peace within me. There are many roads to happiness, that indefinable state of being. Watching a rebroadcast of a television show recently brought to my mind the happiness living in states that have legalized cannabis brings to many of us. Undercover Boss follows CEOs as they work in disguise within their own company. The episode I watched focused on a national pizza chain and, in one segment, the CEO rode along with a delivery person. Filmed in Ohio, the delivery person spoke about getting tipped sometimes in cannabis instead of cash. The CEO was outraged and cautioned the driver that cannabis was illegal in Ohio. (Sadly, that was true when the episode first aired in 2015; medicinal cannabis finally became legal in Ohio in September.) What a feeling of joy, relief, and happiness to be living in Nevada in 2017 when adult-recreational use cannabis was approved! Some might search for happiness as a continual state of being, while others like me see happiness as a blend of emotions. I can be serene, joyful, or ecstatic and still be in a state of happiness. It is all about how you define it, pursue it, and hopefully attain it. Thank you for being part of the Sensi family and sharing happiness. Happy holidays to those who celebrate. I wish all of the best life has to offer to everyone now and in the coming year. Yours in the new normal,

Debbie Hall

M ANAG I NG E D I TO R SENSI LAS VEGAS

sensimag.com DECEMBER 2018 7


Sing A Song

Be the first to enjoy original music at The Composers Showcase. January 16, 2019 / February 20, 2019

(THECOMPOSERSSHOWCASE.COM) fills

row. The youngest composer, age 11, appeared on America’s Got Talent and the oldest is 75.

Myron’s Cabaret

Developed by Thompson in 2006, the showcase be-

Jazz at The Smith Center for the Performing Arts with

came a nonprofit in 2017. “In a town that is the enter-

original music. The monthly showcase, hosted and

tainment capital of the world, where so much empha-

emceed by Thompson, unites the theatre, music, and

sis on cover bands, popular material, and established

arts communities while pioneering new avenues.

artists with a repertoire of well-known music, my

Composers and songwriters present original musical

mission is to make Vegas a cradle of original music

material performed by singers and other entertainers

and artistry—in writing, creating, and producing new

to a supportive audience in the informal cabaret-style

works,” explains Thompson.

setting. The diverse, eclectic, and extremely entertaining show features the highest caliber of musicianship and artistry. These creative spirits relish the outlet for artistic expression as the audience applauds, creating a memorable time. Genres including Broadway tunes, pop, jazz, blues, rock, country, gospel, and classical are created by composers of all ages, with seasoned, young, and new writers creating the music of tomor8 DECEMBER 2018 Las Vegas

–Debbie Hall

PHOTOS COURTESY OF THE COMPOSERS SHOWCASE

The brainchild of longtime Broadway and Las Vegas composer Keith Thompson, The Composers Showcase


This Vape Stays

The Ghost MV1 revolutionizes vaping. The state-of-the-art Ghost MV1 (GHOSTVAPES.COM) portable vaporizer, which debuted at Champs Las Vegas, takes vaping to a new level. MV1 features advanced on-demand true convection heating technology, a long-lasting removable and rechargeable battery, and high-grade ergonomic alloy chassis. Its bluetooth ability controls temperature and other settings through the Ghost Vapes App available for iOS and Android. The smartphone connectivity adds a child-safe Lock My Vape function for added security and the ability to receive over-the-air firmware updates. The vaporizer is accessorized with rose gold, satin silver, nickel, and black chrome finishes. “Ghost is one of the best tools out there for anyone looking to enhance their life from a health and wellness perspective. The way you can curate your vaping experience is really revolutionary for many reasons. The aesthetics of the brand and the top-notch ISO medical-grade device are highlights of why we believe top reviewers have validated us in the space,” says Tara Kelly, president of Ghost. –DH

On The Record The reinvented ‘60s comes to Las Vegas. December 31

Anyone who lives and plays in Los Angeles has been to one or all of the imaginative clubs and speakeasies brought to life by the Houston Brothers, Mark and Johnnie. With some of the most design- and period-specific clubs around, they offer detail, history, signature style, and impressive bar programs. Their company, Houston Hospitality, has introduced guests to over a dozen original bar and nightclub concepts reminiscent of old movies with dream-like design, and intentional thoughtfulness in visual appeal. They put their heart and soul into whatever they envision, and this month they’re taking their vision to Las Vegas with their latest project, On The Record (PARKMGM.COM/EN/ NIGHTLIFE/ON-THE-RECORD.HTML), opening at the MGM Las Vegas on December 31. Expect to be wowed the minute you step inside this 1960s-themed nightclub. With a double-decker 1963 Bristol Lodekka passenger bus in the entry, the latest concept by the Houston Brothers pays tribute to the Beatles and their dad, another reason this will be one to experience. The 11,000-square-foot portal into the seductive ’60s will introduce Vegas to a whole new world the way only Mark and Johnnie can. –Dawn Garcia

sensimag.com DECEMBER 2018 9


Show Me The Money

Nevada’s legal cannabis industry reports $1 billion in revenue.

Economically, it has been a good year for Nevada, eslegal on July 1, 2017. According to the Nevada Dispensary Association, the legal cannabis industry has generated nearly $1 billion in revenue since its inception. Auxiliary businesses that supply, outfit, and shelter cannabis companies have added 8,300 full-time jobs. According to Andrew Jolley, president of the Nevada Dispensary Association, the illegal market currently outsells legal cannabis by a wide margin. Nevada State Sen. Tick Segerblom, who sponsored and helped pass the legislation to legalize cannabis, stated that the legal industry needed to give consumers better incentives to purchase the plant as registered state cardholders. Since recreational marijuana launched last year, the number of medical card holders in Nevada has dropped more than 40 percent from its peak of 28,000 in June 2017.

–DH

Food Safety

Allergen Awareness: A Chef’s Perspective serves essential info. Keith Norman, South Point Hotel assistant executive chef and food safety manager, genuinely cares about the food we eat, and that inspired him to write his first book,

gram,” says Norman, who implemented such a program at South Point. The book addresses people who are newly diagnosed with food allergies, have been living with them for a more

Allergen Awareness: A Chef’s Perspective. More than 15 million people have food allergies.

extended period, and “risk takers,” people who don’t take

This tell-all guide details proper food safety mea-

allergens as seriously as they should. “I wanted to give them

sures for both indus-

some tools on how to communicate when dining out,” Nor-

try professionals and

man says. “If someone has allergies, the server or chef should

those who suffer from

not have to ask, but that information should be given out.”

food allergies.

Many customers are too intimidated to say anything,

“I felt there needed to be more of a blueprint on the hurdles and

10 DECEMBER 2018 Las Vegas

challenges

to

so Norman outlines strategies for how to best express limitations without embarrassment or hesitation. The chef’s background and personal stories, as well as insights by other Las Vegas culinary industry profession-

create a more exten-

als, add extra flavor and spice.

sive food allergy pro-

Purchase a copy on AMAZON.COM

–DH.

PHOTO BY BABE BOTANICS, PHOTO WITH HANDS BY WESLEY GIBBS

pecially since adult-use recreational cannabis became


sensimag.com DECEMBER 2018 11


{askangie } by A N G I E Mc C A R T N E Y

Where to Ask

email: ASKANGIE@SENSIMAG.COM Instagram: @SENSIMAGAZINE #ASKANGIE web: SENSIMAG.COM/ASKANGIE

LITTLE DIFFERENCES In the premiere Q&A installment of the Ask Angie column, Dr. Angie McCartney answers the very first query submitted by a Sensi reader, diving into the big differences one letter can make when it comes to cannabinoids.

“I have been hearing about both CBD and CBN. What’s the difference?” –Zatfig via SENSIMAG.COM/ASKANGIE

eryone knows because it’s the one that gets us high—that has been degraded by oxygenation and UV light exposure. CBN has only mild psychoactive effects but strong sedative and calming properties, and it’s being studied for many of the same ailments as CBD, things like pain and inflammation, seizures, and insomnia. (Cannabis testing facility Steep Labs found that 2.5 to 5 milligrams of CBN is similar to 5 to 10 milligrams of Diazepam.)

You mean, besides the fact that everyone’s talking about CBD these days, while most people have never heard of CBN? Both are cannabinoids, chemical compounds that act on special receptors in the human brain and body to shift neurological and physical pat-

CBN has only mild psychoactive effects but strong sedative and calming properties, and it’s being studied for many of the same ailments as CBD.

terns. More than 100 cannabinoids have been discovered, and they’re being studied as treatments for everything from pain and inflammation to muscle control and anxiety. Right now, non-psychoactive CBD—the most prevalent cannabinoid—is getting a lot of attention for its antianxiety, anti-inflammatory, and pain-relieving properties, and it’s widely available around the world. If you’ve ever smoked or eaten cannabis that’s been sitting around exposed to the air for a while and then fallen into a sleepy stupor, you’ve experienced CBN. This cannabinoid is actually a metabolite of THC—the cannabinoid ev12 DECEMBER 2018 Las Vegas

A major difference between CBD and CBN is how they affect appetite. Studies on mice found that CBN causes significant chow intake, while CBD did the opposite. Whether you’re trying to lose weight or gain it, that’s another reason why it’s always good to know your weed’s cannabinoid content if you can. DR. ANGIE hosts Teaflix Tuesdays on Facebook (FB.COM/DRANGIEMCCARTNEY ), and has a live radio broadcast on the Pete Price Show out of Liverpool on Saturday nights (RADIOCITY.CO.UK ) and on Richard Oliff’s HFM Drive Show on Wednesday afternoons (HARBOROUGHFM.CO.UK ).


sensimag.com DECEMBER 2018 13


{tastebuds } by D E B B I E H A L L

OLÉ PAMPLONA

COCKTAILS & TAPAS Authentic Spanish cuisine reigns supreme.

P

amplona Cocktails & Tapas

(PAMPLONALV.COM)

reverberates with joy, laughter, and passion. Walking through the door, you are transported to the world of Spain, with its adventurous cui-

sine, warm people, and celebration of family and friends. Chef Errol LeBlanc truly embodies the spirit of Spanish food, wine, and spirits. His delight pours through infusing every meal, drink, and dish with the spice of life. The enthusiasm of the chef, owner, management, and staff creates the

14 DECEMBER 2018 Las Vegas


PHOTOS COURTESY OF PAMPLONA COCKTAILS & TAPAS

Spanish culture in Las Vegas. Linen tablecloths and napkins,

Spanish breakfast. Dipping temperatures call for Mariscos

rich woods, and vivid colors add to the dining experience.

Mixtos combining clams, mussels, calamari, and shrimp in

“I was raised that when you go out, you eat good food

a chorizo broth. Fabada Asturiana adds longaniza (Spanish

and enjoy the company of others,” Chef LeBlanc explains.

sausage similar to chorizo) and morcilla (blood sausage)

“This is not a franchise where you stare at your plate. This

for a rich, bean stew. Americanized tastes can indulge in

is for the people to share good times. This is the way it is

waffles, benedicts, and eggs to order.

supposed to be.” Brunch is the most spectacular meal offered because it is practically the chef’s child. Having developed the quintessential Sunday meal, this day is meant for people to eat, dance, and experience a wonderful time.

What is brunch without sweets? Buñuelos captures that sweet tooth with deep-fried dough balls dipped in dark chocolate and fruit sauces. Pamplona is more than just dining, but brings a culture that LeBlanc believes has been lacking in Vegas in recent

Huevos A La Flamenca combines spicy sofrito (aromatic

years. “I want to enjoy my day and spend my time with

sauce), chorizo, potato, and baked eggs for an authentic

people I care about, not in a drunken stupor. The east coast inspired me, and now we have developed this place.” Lunch and dinner are also celebrated. Choices for the beginning of the meal should include Sobrasada, a spicy spread of Majorcan sausage with garlic and paprika, or Lomo made with cured Iberico pork tenderloin blended with Spanish paprika. Truly Spanish in flavor, Peruano is snapper topped with sweet pepper and citrus. For the bold, Pulpo En Escabeche is lightly grilled octopus topped with olive oil, citrus, and chilis for a delectable taste. sensimag.com DECEMBER 2018 15


Sharing is part of the fun, and with tapas try the Queso Fundido with manchego cheese, chistorra sausage, and piquillo peppers. Verdura features grilled vegetables, artichoke, and pisto la mancha (tomatoes, onions, eggplant, green and red peppers, and olive oil). In fact, the chef is very proud of the many vegan and gluten-free options on the menu. A bold choice to select for an entrée for two is Negra, a savory dish of clams, mussel, shrimp, calamari, and scallops served on black rice mixed with aioli. The dark color (prepared with the black ink of squid) might stop some from trying this delectable dish filled with savory flavors but it is amazing and captures the uniqueness of the menu. While Chef LeBlanc emphasizes he is very American, he embraces Europe and the Mediterranean attitudes when it comes to how he eats. His family is a blend of multicultural influences, and Chef LeBlanc personifies this. “I almost killed myself trying to cook when I was 7 years old. I was making buttercream, dropped the sugar, slipped, and fell on my face,” he laughs. From that moment on, he knew cooking was his destiny, and part of his family DNA is to share that skill with others. When another chef expressed his philosophy with Chef LeBlanc, he took it to heart. “The first bite is great. The second bite is good, and the third bite is boring. I want to take people in transition in their palate. I wanted to cook as many types of food as possible.” First, he became very passionate about Italian, then he mastered dishes from the Iberia peninsula of Spain and numerous regions of Portugal, ready to explode on the Vegas dining scene. As for spirits, gin and tonic is the go-to drink with sangria a popular second choice followed by brandy and sherry. While the Spanish culture im-

One of the most popular cocktails offered at Pamplona is Purple Rain, a light but bold drink with a violet hue.

PURPLE RAIN

bibes on straightforward cocktails, great wine and specialty cocktails enhance

INGREDIENTS

the meal.

• 1 ounce Empress 1980

The bar and restaurant culminate a childhood dream of owner and founder

• 1 ounce of lime juice

Marisol Crespo. Since the age of six, she has embraced the exquisite taste and

• ½ ounce Fiorente Italian

flavors of the Canary Islands, home of her grandparents. Assistant Chef Ariel

Elderflower Liqueur

Zuniga blends his unique touches, adding to the family-style feel in the dining

Tonic water

environment. Pamplona is named after the capital of Navarre, the province in northern

Combine the first three

Spain known for the Running of the Bulls (Feast of San Fermín). The feast

ingredients and pour into a

demonstrates daredevil attitude and celebration, which is also the spirit of

highball glass. Top off with tonic

Pamplona Cocktails & Tapas.

water and garnish with a sprig

Pamplona Cocktails and Tapas / 5781 W. Sahara Ave. / Las Vegas / (702) 659-5781

of rosemary and lime slice.

16 DECEMBER 2018 Las Vegas


sensimag.com DECEMBER 2018 17


{lifestyle } by D E B B I E H A L L

EXPLORE

HAPPINESS Create a memory, share an adventure, and discover the world of Las Vegas.

December—the month of holidays, snow on the mountains, cowboys and cowgirls, and New Year’s Eve. Here are our choices for the top ways to experience happiness much like the joy of a child, the elation of love, and celebration of the season.

Skate On Ice

It might be a tradition in cold regions but ice skating has been embraced in Vegas with the success of Vegas Golden Knights hockey team. Pick up the puck and sticks to grab some glory on the ice. Not ready to pummel each other? Resorts on the Strip transform pools into icy ponds for gliding on the ice, and a winter wonderland east of Vegas combines a skating rink on the lake with the feel of a wintry New England town. Sliding smoothly on ice can bring back childhood memories and create new ones. 18 DECEMBER 2018 Las Vegas


Enjoy A Snow Day

Explore Nevada With A Good Book

LEECANYONLV.COM, GOMTCHARLESTON.COM

BACKROADSNV.COM

Las Vegas really does offer four seasons—it’s a short 35-mile drive to play in the fluffy white stuff. First stop is the Mt. Charleston Hotel, where you can sip a hot toddy surrounded by some of the most incredible views of majestic pines and magnificent mountains. Further up the road is the Mt. Charleston Lodge for dining fireside before snowshoeing, sledding, building snowmen, making snow angels, and observing winter wildlife. Bundle up and delight in an old-fashion sleigh ride while holding a steaming hot chocolate. Adventure junkies travel to Lee Canyon Ski & Snowboard Resort for tubing, skiing, and snowboarding. Snow invokes happiness, especially when you can wave goodbye and drive home to sunny 60 degree weather.

The world might be going crazy with the holidays, so take a mini vacation with a good book. Learn more about Las Vegas and surrounding areas—which encompass so much more than neon and gaming—while luxuriating in comfort. Backroads of Southern Nevada by Jerry Blank is a collection of destinations in Southern Nevada. Blank captures the essence of the state with his pen, ink, and watercolor drawings that bring emotion and enthusiasm to hidden treasures. Read about the history of the desert as a testament to the time, past and present. Check out the saloons (more than you would imagine) still serving drinks, pick fruit at the date farm in Tecopa, California, and venture into Pioche, Nevada, the wildest city in the 1800s that’s now a sleepy little town. Get lost in the escapades before coming back to reality.

Discover Kwanzaa 702.229.ARTS / LASVEGASNEVADA.GOV/RESIDENTS/EVENTS/KWANZAA-UJAMAA

Calling All Cowpokes! NFREXPERIENCE.COM

The National Finals Rodeo is coming to town Dec. 6-15, along with concerts, parties, and shopping at Cowboy Christmas. Put on your Wranglers and boots and two-step to some of the biggest country acts coming to Vegas. It’s the Wild West, a tradition bringing the American experience of history and lifestyle since 1984.

The African American and Pan-African holiday, Dec. 26 – Jan. 1, 2019, celebrates family, community, and culture. Named after African first harvest celebrations, the weeklong holiday encourages daily rituals to honor traditions. The West Las Vegas Library Theatre will host a festival celebrating the fourth day of Kwanzaa (on Dec. 29) where you can expand your horizons as you learn about actor and activist Paul Robeson, embrace the spoken word at a youth poetry showcase, understand the Girls & Boys Rites of Passage, and do a little shopping at the marketplace.

Share A Holiday Show LVPHIL.ORG, HUMANNATURELIVE.COM, LEGENDSINCONCERT.COM/LAS-VEGAS

The sound of music resonates in December, and top shows like Human Nature’s Rockin’ Holiday Jukebox, Celebrate the Season with Legends in Concert, and Las Vegas Philharmonic Presents A Classic Holiday Concert capture the holiday spirit. Human Nature recreates the music of pop hits and Motown with their own distinctive sound for the Christmas season. Tribute artists in Legends sing live (no lip syncing here), and bring back the holiday classics as favorite artists such as Elvis The Play’s The Thing and Michael Jackson. Nostalgic holiday favorites for the Shakespeare could not have said it better. Engage with the actors on stage, expanding with emotion, drama, and humor entire family including “White Christmas,” “Ave Maria,” while bringing the written word to life. Identity and memory and “Hanukkah Suite” come to life with the symphoare explored in Incognito, through Dec. 16) presented by A Pubny and vocalists Kristen Hertzenberg (Phantom), Travis lic Fit and Cockroach Theatre companies. Three interwoven Cloer (Jersey Boys) and the Las Vegas Master Singers. stories include the theft of Albert Einstein’s brain, a first-time Whether it’s “Deck The Halls,” “Jingle Bell Rock,” or “The romance with someone of the same gender, and an impaired Hanukkah Song,” this music reminds everyone why this patient who only remembers that he loves his girlfriend. is the reason for the season. sensimag.com DECEMBER 2018 19


{travelwell } by DAW N G A R C I A

WINTER IS COMING The Caribbean is calling your name.

There’s an island where crystal clear blue oceans flow,

In Puerto Plaza, the town square, you are surrounded

flavor ruminates through every street, spontaneous bach-

with activity and life. From a fake donkey dressed in color-

ata dancing happens the minute a beat sounds, fine cigars

ful necklaces being ridden by a man in a straw-brimmed

are rolled, rum from raw fermented sugar cane flows like

hat and a proper suit jacket, to men on stilts dressed in

water, and the sun shines in winter.

festive mythical garb, the sensory overload will perk you

The Dominican Republic, located in the eastern Carib-

right up. The beat of salsa and bachata call your hips to

bean, is a traveler’s paradise—especially in December.

move in a way you can’t deny, and the locals will invite you

Known as the DR, it’s one of my favorite countries to trav-

to dance. You can get fresh coconut water at a cart where

el to when the chilly winter weather creeps in. The air is

young men wield machetes to crack open young coconuts

warm and temperate, and winter weather as we know it is

with expert finesse or stop into the local ice cream shop

nonexistent. From the North to the South, the DR is plen-

for flavors made with fruit plucked from the nearby jungle. The cuisine in Sosúa spans a range of flavors that ad-

Santo Domingo and Puerto Plata (the South and the

here to the sustainable farming practices the DR is known

North) are vastly beautiful, but the central coast truly sat-

for. Using organically farmed plantains, chili peppers, egg-

isfies my desire for total tranquility. Sosúa, located on the

plants, mangoes, cucumbers, and avocados and fresh-

central coast and 25 kilometers away from the majestic

caught seafood, grass-fed beef, and delectable dairy from

Puerto Plata, is a Caribbean paraíso with the colors to

goat farms, local restaurants cook up some great cuisine.

match. The houses, architecture, beach shacks, and boats

Among them is El Toro Negro (ELTORONEGRO.CO ), located

are all painted shades of blues, pinks, corals, yellows, and

on a stretch of Playa Sosúa. Serving Mexican food with

greens. Everything is alive! Sosúa boasts vibrant influenc-

island undertones, this beachfront eatery isn’t fancy or

es from Spain, Cuba, and Africa.

overly hyped. It’s simple. My favorites are the Ceviche Es-

20 DECEMBER 2018 Las Vegas

PHOTO COURTESY OF NICK ARGIRES

tiful in culture, gastronomy, and adventure.


tilo Veracruz and the Nachos al Carbon. Sosúa cuisine is

Armando Bermúdez & Co.C por A), the rum is sensational

best experienced by just exploring. Stop in at nearly any

and pure. Unlike most other rums, Dominican rums ex-

local restaurant, beach shack, or side-of-the-road bites,

emplify smoothness, thanks to an original and natural

and you won’t be disappointed.

process of distillation and aging in American white oak

In Sosúa, cigars and rum are the culmination of joy. Curi-

barrels.

ous how to handroll a fine cigar, I stepped into a cigar shop

Heading just outside of Puerto Plaza toward my temporary

called Monseñor, where a man named Hector walked

home at the Ocean Villas Deluxe (OCEANVILLAGEDELUXE.COM),

me through the small but legendary space with tobacco

I make a stop at the local grocery store to pick up some

leaves laid and stacked in perfect formation, old school

food and rum. This resort and spa consists of personal-

metal-press machines with men at the helm assisting in

ized luxury villas with stretches of ocean and mountains

rolling, and a humidor. Cuban and Dominican cigars and

that envelop every sense of the word escape. I loaded

cigarillos were stacked neatly, arranged according to fla-

my luggage onto a golf cart and drove to my crisp white

vor profiles and strength. I choose a medium-strength

three-bedroom villa with rich accents, a private pool with

Dominican blend, and Hector shows me how to clip it

sweeping views of the ocean, and a private cabana. The

properly, then it’s time to light it up. It has notes of sweet

master bedroom has an outdoor shower and indoor bath-

vanilla and the welcome sting of fresh tobacco. It’s sexy

tub. With a fully stocked, state-of-the-art kitchen, in-

and seductive as the smell fills the air around me.

cluding brand new appliances, a generous living area, and

At any given bar in the DR, you’ll find locally sourced

dining area, these villas are unlike anything else I’ve expe-

rum—and you should have some any chance you can.

rienced. As I walk out onto my patio past the pool, I see the

With three sugar cane distilleries (Barceló, Brugal, and J.

sun bidding farewell, lighting up the lush green grasslands and rocks with tinges of gold and amber. The sound of the crashing waves fill the air. I was eager to try Restaurant Maria, one of four restaurants and bars on site. Beginning with a rum cocktail, I ordered the fried squid, churrasco salad, and churrasco angus in chimichurri sauce. The food

sensimag.com DECEMBER 2018 21


here is piquant and hearty in portion size. Breakfast the next day was equally lovely, and I highly recommend giving the plantanos with grilled onion a try. One of Sosúa’s splendors is its unique diving spots.

DUE NORTH While you’re in the area of Sosúa, travel to Puerto Plata.

Among them, the more frequented is Airport Wall, which

S TAY

is full of submarine walls and tunnels, the sunken vessel

Designed by architect Sarah Garcia, Casa Colonial

wreck of Zingara, the Coral Garden and Coral Wall—coral

(CASACOLONIALHOTEL.COM ) emanates elegance

reefs, caverns, and mazes up and down a 50-foot wall 66

and thoughtfulness. Taking the history of the

feet below sea level—and the Three Rocks Site. One of

region into account and blending old world with

the most beautiful snorkeling sites is in Puerto Plata at

new, Garcia created a luxurious resort that is

Snorkel Cayo Arena. Located on Paradise Island, known

infinitely open and charming. A full-service all-inclusive resort, Gran Ventana (GRANVENTANAHOTEL.COM ) is the sister property to Casa Colonial. I enjoyed a beautiful dinner on the sand while the sound of mild waves lapped against the shore in the peak of the evening summer heat. SEE The Teleferico Tour (TELEFERICOPUERTOPLATA.COM) takes you from the jungle floor to the highest point of the tree canopy. You can walk on marked paths, see species of plants and flowers, and marvel at the grandiose El Cristo Redentor statue.

22 DECEMBER 2018 Las Vegas


properly as Cavo Paraíso, it has a sandbar miles offshore that’s home to a coral islet. Surrounded by crystal clear turquoise waters and the warmth of the Dominican ocean, you’ll be served rum and snacks that make snorkeling all the more entertaining. Other nearby stops worth exploring are the El Choco and Monkey Jungle National Parks.

sensimag.com DECEMBER 2018 23


Sosúa’s history is as colorful as the region itself. It was a place of refuge for the Jewish community during Nazi persecution. More than 700 colonists fled here from 1939 to 1945, boosting a thriving dairy and meat industry and leaving a deep cultural mark on the area. You can learn more about that at the Jewish Community Museum in Mirador Park. In addition, art plays a significant role in making sense of this Antillean island’s cultural influence. The DR is heavenly, from the smells of freshly poured rum and cut mango to the beautiful smiles on the faces of the locals. It’s an affordable way to get away, and when the rain, snow, and icy cold weather move in, there’s nothing quite like escaping to a little slice of heaven. 24 DECEMBER 2018 Las Vegas


sensimag.com DECEMBER 2018 25


{homemade } by DAW N G A R C I A

+ ICY TOASTY Four recipes from sophisticated to jolly.

ICE, ICE, BABY!

Drinking the good stuff with Trevor Schneider. Somewhere in the far-off volcano-powered coastal town of

and his homemade herbal elixirs. He travels the country ed-

Borgarnes, Iceland, exists a small distillery that produces a crisp,

ucating others in the industry about Reyka’s icy nectar and

beautiful vodka we lovingly refer to as Reyka (REYKA.COM). With a

feeding strangers cocktails.

beautiful mouth feel that makes it a little too easy to go down,

With his ear-to-ear grin, Schneider will tell you that one of

Reyka tastes icy, clean, majestic, and simply refined, much like the

his favorite moments as a mixologist was in Iceland, where

elements its made in. While, sure, there’s a fun tale about it being

he literally made cocktails on a glacier. “I’ve made cocktails in

made in the land of elves and trolls, the best person to learn about

some really unbelievable places,” Schneider says, “but that one

the versatility of a good vodka from is the mixologist with person-

is definitely up there.”

ality for days, Trevor Schneider, known as the Cocktail Ninja. Schneider, a passionate cocktail slinger, is also quite an ice fanatic, often exploring ways to serve up cocktails using ice

26 DECEMBER 2018 Las Vegas

In the words of Reykjavik-born singer-songwriter, Björk Guðmundsdóttir, “You can’t say no to hope, can’t say no to happiness!” That totally applies to drinking.


Iceland Dill Martini This is a variation on a dirty martini with pickle brine instead of olive juice. Both are equally amazing, but this offers something unique. “This is a fantastic cocktail to have in the winter, as it offers a lighter martini experience,” mixologist Trevor Schneider says. INGREDIENTS

• 2 oz Reyka Vodka • ½ to 1 oz kosher pickle brine • Rinse dry vermouth • 10 mustard seeds GLASS: Martini. GARNISH: Kosher dill pickle and sprig of dill. METHOD: Shake. POUR: Combine all the ingredients into shaker with ice.

Shake, strain, and garnish.

Icelandic Grapefruitini The Icelandic Grapefruitini is another great wintertime cocktail. “This cocktail offers some seasonal flavor combined with a refreshing finish,” proclaims the Cocktail Ninja. INGREDIENTS

• 1 ½ oz Reyka vodka • ½ oz maple syrup • 2 oz pink grapefruit juice • Pinch of pink Himalayan salt GLASS: Martini. GARNISH: Rosemary. METHOD: Shake. POUR: Combine all the ingredients into shaker with ice.

Shake, strain, and garnish. sensimag.com DECEMBER 2018 27


WINTER WARMTH

Keeping that winter chill nice and toasty. In downtown Los Angeles at the underground, mid-century modern bar Birds & Bees (BIRDSANDBEESLA.COM ), the most interesting cocktails are being made. Infused with liquors and tinctures that transport drinkers to simpler times, this throwback bar offers all the comforts of home—were you to have a 1950s house with iconic cues letting happy drinkers know they’re among friends. Mixologist Jake Larowe is the brains behind the operation. Spending his days making concoctions like date-infused Mezcal, homemade Tiki bitters and tonic syrup, and whatever else he feels like experimenting with, Larowe pours exceptional drinks. He treated us with an extra toasty recipe that will warm you this winter. You’ll be tipsy on eggnog before you know it.

28 DECEMBER 2018 Las Vegas


Eggnog

DIRECTIONS

by Jake Larowe

STEP 1: Split vanilla bean down the middle and place it in a

This recipe is honestly best when it is about four or five days

jar with rye whiskey, seal it, and let it sit overnight. Do the

old. The high-proof rye whiskey and mezcal keep the yolk

same with the chili in the mezcal. *NOTE: If using the vanil-

from going bad and helps the flavors blend well while perfect-

la extract and chili powder, wait to add them at step 4.

ly thickening up the eggnog. With the amount of booze in it,

STEP 2: Separate egg yolks from whites.

this recipe could realistically last at least two to three weeks.

STEP 3: Use a whisk (like a mad man), a stand mixer (fancy), or

an egg beater with a whisk attachment (recommended) to INGREDIENTS

whisk egg yolks while adding sugar. Whisk until yolks turn a

• 6 egg yolks • 1 cup sugar • 2 cups whole milk • 1 cup cream • 8 oz rye whiskey • 4 oz mezcal • 1 whole nutmeg • 1 cinnamon stick • 1 vanilla bean (or ¹⁄₄ tsp vanilla extract, see note*) • 1 dried arbol chili pepper (or ¹⁄₈ tsp chili powder, see note*)

light yellow similar to a lemon peel and are smooth and creamy. STEP 4: Slowly add milk and cream while continuing to whisk.

Carefully add whiskey and mezcal. If using vanilla extract and chili powder, add them now. Whisk until well combined. STEP 5: Rest in the refrigerator at least 24 hours. STEP 6: Serve in your best-etched crystal punch bowl/

pitcher/bucket. For garnish, grate nutmeg and cinnamon—and if you like it hot, a pinch of chili powder—overtop while humming your favorite holiday song. sensimag.com DECEMBER 2018 29


Get in touch: sales@ellementa.com | 303.918.8404 | ellementa.com 30 DECEMBER 2018 Las Vegas


sensimag.com DECEMBER 2018 31


{highprofile }

STAGE13.COM/SHOWS/COOKING-ON-HIGH/

by DAW N G A R C I A

READY, SET, COOK,

SMOKE! A Culinary Show Cultivating Cannabis Cuisine.

Josh Leyva 32 DECEMBER 2018 Las Vegas


Q + A with Cooking on High Creator/Executive Producer Collin Whelan and Weed Expert, Ngaio Bealum. We’ve watched Gordon Ramsay (Hell’s Kichen) and Tom Colicchio (Top Chef) judge upcoming chefs and their cuisine for years, and now thanks to Netflix, we get to watch a new kind of cooking competition. Created by Conveyer Media, Cooking on High is a show taking the culinary experience to new highs. This time its cannabis that’s on the menu. Produced

like Disney, VH1, Comedy Central, Snapchat, Travel Channel, and USA Network among them. Cooking on High is a show he’s excited to see on the air. We asked him about what he’s cooking up for Season Two. As women become the dominant consumer of cannabis, any chance of having more females on the series? Collin Whelan (CW): Absolutely! We’ve actually started chatting with more female judges and chefs in hopes of having

by Stage 13, a division of Warner Bros. Digital Network, Vice

more on for Season Two.

President Shari Scorca oversees talent and content devel-

With so many resources out there, especially edibles, of all the dishes you made in Season One, which one was by far the tastiest and most unique?

opment. Scorca emphatically says, “We were looking for something noisy that would break through the clutter. Even as cannabis culture has gone a bit more mainstream, this show still stands out. It is not a parody of a cooking competition show, but instead a real cooking competition with hilarious and slightly stoned judges. The comedy is in the

CW: I hate to say this but as the executive producer I wasn’t allowed to eat any of the dishes. They all looked amazing and every judge seemed happy. One stand-out challenge though was the one we called, “Wake & Bake” and it in-

cast of characters, while the dishes are savory, delicious, and

volved making breakfast foods.

of course on a ‘higher’ level!” Adding Cooking on High to the

What are you excited to experiment with next in terms of ingredients? CW: We’ll decide that after the casting process is completed for the new season.

roster was an exciting development for Scorca. The series is among the more daring and provocative unscripted shows airing on the network now known for pushing boundaries Hosted by YouTube star, Josh Leyva, Cooking on High

What else can we expect in terms of variety for guest judges and chefs?

brings together some of the best chefs, challenging them

CW: We’re in the very early stages but we think our audi-

to make dishes utilizing cannabis strains chosen by weed

ence is going to the love the direction Season Two is go-

expert Ngaio Bealum, all cooked in a set amount of time.

ing in. We’ve been approached by a number of people that

The goal is to create dishes that will impress the judges, get

want to judge, as you can imagine, so it should make the

said judges properly stoned, and inevitably win the coveted,

casting process interesting. In one sentence, tell me what doing this show means to you—and—how it’s changed your life so far?

and creating truly authentic content.

“GOLDEN POT”. Cooking for an array of judges ranging from rappers, comedians, digital influencers and more, this show really kicks up the fun and wets the appetite with cuisine

CW: This show started out as a great idea that we thought

that can be anything from late night munchies to Michelin-worthy eats. With the excitement and anticipation surrounding the second season, we talked to show creator and executive producer Collin Whelan and weed expert, Ngaio Bealum to get a preview of what we can expect in the coming season.

COLLIN WHELAN Founder of Conveyor Media, Whelan is a man with a vision and a pretty wicked sense of humor. The roster of shows he’s produced and executive produced is impressive: Cooking on High, Bargain Mansions, Justin Bieber’s Roast Red Carpet, American Idol Tonight, Beauty Wars, Ink Roulette working with media giants

Ngaio Bealum


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would never get made. Sometimes the craziest ideas are the ones people want to see.

NGAIO BEALUM | @NGAIO420 Ngaio is a cannabis aficionado and chronisseur, and the man behind the strains presented on a platter for Cooking on High like Cookies and Cream. OG Kush. Girl Scout Cookies and Mega Queso. Being a stand-up comedian is just an added bonus! A cannabis contributor and columnist to several California publications (hey Ngaio, we should talk!), Bealum also has his own podcast called Rollin with Ngaio as well being a frequent guest on Doug Benson’s podcast. (CANNABISRADIO.COM/PODCASTS/ROLLIN-WITH-NGAIO/)

How do you choose your strains? NGAIO BEALUM (NG): Me personally, I follow my nose. The way cannabis smells can tell you a lot about how the strain will make you feel. Different terpenes (The chemicals that give cannabis its amazing aromas) have different effects. Also, I have a lot of friends that like to smoke, so we get together on the regular to try new strains. What is one of the craziest things that’s happened on set so far? NG: The set is pretty mellow. I think the wildest thing is that the judges take a lot of naps after they tape an episode. As cannabis influencers and educators, what do you think can help break the remaining stigma? NG: A recent poll by Pew Research Center survey showed that 62 percent of Americans think that cannabis should be legal. Sure, there are a few folks that still believe the prohibitionist propaganda, but most folks these days understand that cannabis is relatively harmless, and can be quite fun if used in a responsible manner. I think this is a case where the politicians are way behind the will of the people. Surprise.

What else can we expect in terms of variety for guest judges and chefs? NG: The more variety, the merrier! I think when we first started, many people didn’t know what to expect, and so many have been wary about appearing on a cannabis-friendly show. But now, we have folks clamoring to be in the show, so I am looking forward to having all sorts of guests and chefs on the show in the next season. In one sentence, tell me what doing this show means to you—and—how it’s changed your life so far? NG: I love that I get to talk about two of my favorite things (cannabis and cooking—you can guess the third one) with like-minded people and highly skilled professionals. If someone with hesitation about edibles and cannabis comes along, what do you tell them to help open their minds and change perceptions? NG: Eh. Listen, cannabis isn’t for everyone. If folks don’t like it, that’s fine. But no one should go to jail or lose their job just because they like weed. Now, if someone is interested in trying cannabis-infused cuisine, I would advise them to start with low doses. Cannabis cuisine is delicious. And hella fun. What cannabis product is in your stash right now? NG: Right now? I just finished some really nice Purple Hindu Kush from Oregon. So tasty and mellow. I am also enjoying a superlative Tangie variant known as Purple Candy Cane from Greenshock Farms. Fruity and giggly. Harvest season is in full swing out here so I am looking forward to enjoying the stony splendor of the California cannabis community. Cooking on High is just beginning but while Season Two gets under way and Stage 13 continues to lead the way with interesting content, make sure to catch Cooking on High’s Season One streaming now on Netflix.

sensimag.com DECEMBER 2018 35


THE WONDER OF

36 DECEMBER 2018 Las Vegas

DO


OGS For many of us, life without animal companions would be a lesser life. by L E L A N D

RUCKER

I had a dog once that played music. REALLY. ANY TIME MY FRIEND GIL AND I GOT OUT OUR GUITARS, RICKY GRABBED A SQUEAKY TOY, PLANTED HIMSELF BETWEEN US, AND STARTED MAKING NOISE. HE HAD NO SENSE OF TIME OR RHYTHM—IT WAS PURE SKRONKING JAZZ—BUT THIS BELGIAN TERVUREN WAS INTO THE MUSIC. WHENEVER HE HEARD THE CHEERS THEME ON TV, HE BEGAN, UH, SINGING ALONG. WE HAVE MANY AUDIO TAPES, BUT ALAS, NO VIDEO OF HIM WHILE HE WAILED. HE WOULD BE A VIRAL SENSATION TODAY. It’s been more than 20 years since Ricky died, but I think

I was afraid of dogs as a child and grew up with the gen-

of him a lot. I think often about all the dogs that have

eral belief that non-human animals—we are all animals,

graced my life. No other canine has shown any degree of

after all—acted solely by instinct. The difference between

musical aptitude, though I have tried mightily. But each

humans and other animals, we were told, is that we hu-

one has been a good friend, and each has taught me some-

mans are sentient, conscious, emotional beings, and other

thing about myself. I couldn’t live without a dog. They are

animals aren’t. Animals belong to us, the reasoning went.

my companions, friends, and teachers.

Not being around them, I didn’t give it much thought until I

Humans, especially Americans, are animal crazy. Last

got my first dog at age 27. I’ve never been without one since.

year, according to Statista, a statistics portal for market data,

A big part of the disconnect about whether animals are

60 percent of US households included a dog, and 47 million

conscious beings is that they can’t tell us what or how

had a cat. That’s 80 to 90 million dogs, give or take a few mil-

they’re feeling or how intelligent they are in a language

lion. Many have both, and that doesn’t count the multitude

that, as smart as we are, we can understand. Their “intel-

of fish, rabbits, ferrets, iguanas, snakes, birds, guinea pigs,

ligence,” such as it is, might not resemble ours, but that

mice, hamsters, and other animals we keep. Maybe we’re

doesn’t mean it’s not there. It’s not hard to find Youtube

not all Leona Helmsley, the hotelier who left most of her in-

videos that show ravens and crows making complex deci-

heritance to Trouble, a Maltese who lived in luxury until she

sions to get food. Border collies have been trained to distin-

died at age 12, yet we managed to spend almost $70 billion

guish between hundreds of words. Watching the famous

on our companion animals last year, half of that on food and

video of Robin Williams and Koko the ape interacting, it’s

treats, and we’re on target to spend more this year.

hard not to suggest they are showing genuine empathy for sensimag.com DECEMBER 2018 37


each other while rubbing each other’s bellies and laughing. We can put Go-Pros on their heads to see the world from their point of view, and the New York Times reported recently that a canine researcher is performing MRIs on dogs to try to see inside their brains, but there is still no way we can experience life as animals do. That’s a secret they keep to themselves, and it drives us crazy. When I once suggested to a researcher in Yellowstone it would be cool to be inside a coyote’s brain for five minutes, he replied that he would give anything for just one second inside there.

Dominion vs. Domination The way we look at animals has changed a lot, especially over the last 50 years, and we are finally coming to terms with animal sentience, or at least the concept that animals have feelings, too. The Biblical injunction comes early, in its first chapter. “And God said, ‘Let us make man in our image, after our likeness,’” Genesis 1:26 reads. “And let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth.” That one word in there—dominion—has proved problematic. What does dominion really mean? Does it mean we humans must exert control over all other creatures or be their caretakers? Marc Bekoff is an ethologist (someone

CBD 4 K9s CBD is all the rage these days—and not only for humans. More and more veterinarians are learning about this compound and are now suggesting it to their canine patients for pain relief, anxiety and behavior issues, and inflammation, especially in older dogs. A clinical study from Cornell released earlier this year suggests that CBD oil can help increase comfort for dogs with osteoarthritis. My local humane society now stocks CBD products, and my vet says she hasn’t found any real downsides, although she suggests talking with a doctor about medications the dog might already be taking before starting a CBD protocol. There are lots of choices, but one place to start might be Mary’s Whole Pet, a new farm-to-table line from Mary’s Medicinals and Elite Botanicals. All plants used for the oil are grown on an organic, chemical- and pesticide-free family farm in Colorado, and the list of products includes drops (in two potencies based on weight), capsules of different dosages, and a transdermal gel pen for fast-acting relief for dry skin, cracked nose or paws, or surface wounds. One warning: THC, the compound generally associated with the cannabis high, should never be given to dogs. Keep your edible products away from your canine companions. Because it’s federally illegal, no scientific tests have been done on dosage levels for animals. As suggested with humans, start low and go slow to find the right dose. And always remember that every animal is different; what works for some won’t work for others.

who studies the science of animal behavior) and researcher who has been working with animals his entire life. “A lot of this is driven from the view that as humans we are a superior species, and we are allowed to do what we want,” he says. “But dominion doesn’t mean domination.” Religion has played its role, he explains, in passages like the one above that claim only humans have souls. “Another reason is that if you distance yourself from other animals,” Bekoff says, “it allows you to do what you want.” This kind of detachment allows us to control animals, whether that means shooting them for trophies, keeping them in zoos, or producing them for research purposes. “In terms of industry, you can understand where people come from,” Bekoff says. Allowing that animals have feelings changes that dynamic considerably and begs even more questions. That humans are unique was accepted dogma for most of human history. Charles Jonkel, the recently deceased bear

until he graduated that he was able to pursue his real studies.

biologist, grew up poor but learned to trap and hunt at an

Bekoff has worked with and written books with Jane

early age as part of a subsistence family. When he went to

Goodall, perhaps the best-known ethologist for her work

school in the 1950s, bear biology was a relatively new field.

with apes. When they started writing about animal sen-

Jonkel already knew a thing or two about animal behavior,

tience, they ran into the same kind of resistance for ques-

but he also knew to keep his opinions about animal intelli-

tioning established beliefs. “For a long time, Jane and I were

gence and sensitivity to himself because, as he explained it,

kinda sideshows,” he admits. “We got heavily criticized for

that wouldn’t help get you a degree. In those days, he said,

talking about the emotional lives of animals. But I basically

you didn’t talk about that kind of stuff out loud, and it wasn’t

really believed in what I was doing and kept doing it.”

38 DECEMBER 2018 Las Vegas


Bekoff’s view of dominion has more to do with stewardship than domination, based around the concept that hu-

instead of an owner suggests a different way to approach your responsibility toward your animal companions.

mans, the dominant species, are charged with taking care of

One of the best places to learn about dog behavior is

what we have. And though humans might consider them-

dog parks, the fastest growing segment of city parks

selves more intelligent than animals, we really have to try

these days. Most major US cities have at least one, and

and see things from the animal’s perspective. “It’s not how

they have become a kind of a cultural phenomenon. In his

smart an individual animal is, it’s what they feel,” Bekoff says.

new book, Canine Confidential: Why Dogs Do What They

“We’re all smart in some ways, but there are different types of

Do, Bekoff says dog parks are like rich petri dishes of dog

intelligence. Rats are really smart. Maybe not as smart as hu-

culture, working classrooms for human/canine under-

mans, but they have emotional lives just the same.”

standing and citizen science on the subject.

Companion Animals What does this have to do with the way we interact with our dogs? I scoffed originally when the city of Boulder, Colorado, changed the word “owner” to “guardian” in its ordinances almost two decades ago. It’s nothing more than a symbolic gesture, one of those “only in Boulder” things, I told myself, agreeing with a city attorney who at the time called it “social engineering.” I have since come to appreciate the distinction. Ownership, as noted above, suggests that you can do whatever the hell you want, and, at its worst leads to behavior that obliterates all distinctions and leads to atrocities like dog- or cockfighting. Thinking of yourself as a guardian

“LIFE IS VERY VIVID TO ANIMALS. IN MANY CASES, THEY KNOW WHO THEY ARE.” —Carl Safina

sensimag.com DECEMBER 2018 39


“They’re gold mines for learning about both dogs and

ter way to look at my dog. Rather than drag her away

people,” he writes. “Visits can serve as myth breakers or

when she wants to spend time sniffing at a certain spot

icebreakers. For hours on end, the interactions never stop:

or chastising her every time she gets into a scuffle, I try to

dogs are watching dogs, people are watching dogs, dogs

see it from her point of view.

are watching people, and people are watching one anoth-

It’s taken me a long time to realize that, if we just allow

er as they care for, play with, and try to manage their dogs.”

them, dogs can be our teachers and not just our pets. We

I’ve spent some time in dog parks in the last few years,

can learn a lot from them. I have had an exceptionally dif-

and Canine Confidential, which is written in a casual, con-

ficult time with my dogs’ deaths. But I have also come to

versational style, reinforces the things I’m learning and

realize that, hard as they are, those deaths are a reminder

pushes me to learn even more. “Life is very vivid to animals.

that life is precious and that grieving is a part of it, too. It’s

In many cases, they know who they are,” says Carl Safina,

their final lesson for us, and it’s a big one.

whose Beyond Words: What Animals Think and Feel is a

Though I’m still looking for another dog that can make

scientific and observational study of elephant, wolf, and

music like Ricky, I’ve learned that every dog is unique

whale interaction and societies. “They know who their friends are and who their ri-

and special in its own way. We have come a long way, but we still have a long

vals are. They have ambitions for

way to go, and it can never

higher status. They compete.

come too quickly for Be-

Their lives follow the arc of

koff. “The bottom line,”

a career, like ours do.” Thinking

about

he says, “is that if we’re an-

going to make change,

imals in that context

we need to recognize

provides a much bet-

sentience.”

P: 262-893-2175 E: uneedarchangelstudios@gmail.com

F : @facbook/archangelstudio I : @instagram/archangelphoto T : @twitter/archangelphoto

40 DECEMBER 2018 Las Vegas

PHOTOGRAPHY VIDEOGRAPHY PRODUC TS AERIAL WEDDINGS EVENTS COMMERCIAL FASHION


sensimag.com DECEMBER 2018 41


K R AY- K R AY:

T H I S

P L A N T

H E A L S

Kratom shows promise in treating analgesia, inflammation, depression, anxiety, and opioid withdrawal. Of course, it’s being vilified. by R O BY N G R I G G S L AW R E N C E

Paul Bloom is an explorer. HIS BUSINESS TAKES HIM TO THE FOUR CORNERS OF THE EARTH, AND HE’S HAD A LIFELONG FASCINATION WITH NATURAL REMEDIES AND LIFE-ENHANCING BOTANICAL COMPOUNDS. SO, WHEN HE READ ABOUT

kratom, A MEDICINAL HERB NATIVE

TO SOUTHEAST ASIA THAT CAN PRODUCE A STIMULANT EFFECT AT LOWER DOSES AND RELAXING, EUPHORIC EFFECTS AT HIGHER DOSES, HE HAD TO GIVE IT A TRY. Bloom* found a young man selling kratom tea and

making it a Schedule 1 drug in 2017, though it back-

powder at a farmers’ market and bought some to try

tracked after a passionate campaign by kratom users

during his nightly sunset walk on the beach. He washed

(who call themselves kratomites) to keep it legal.

down a teaspoon of the powder with grapefruit juice, as

Alabama, Arkansas, Indiana, Tennessee, Vermont,

he’d been instructed to do, and sat down in the white

Wisconsin, the District of Columbia, Denver, San Diego,

sand to watch the sun set over the Gulf of Mexico. After

and Sarasota, Florida, have banned kratom. It’s avail-

about 45 minutes, euphoria and tranquility settled over

able at head shops in most other states and is readily

him. His shoulders relaxed, and his mental acuity sharp-

available online, though it is not to be sold for human

ened as a warm sense of wellbeing washed through his

consumption because it has not been through the Food

mind and body. He enjoyed the kratom’s effects for sev-

and Drug Administration’s extensive testing to ensure

eral hours, and when he returned home immediately

it’s safe.

embarked on an extensive research project to better understand this plant.

Bloom believes authorities are vilifying kratom because of “ignorance and fear of the unknown and a gen-

“Kratom seems like one of the safest botanicals I

eral knee-jerk reaction to any natural product that peo-

have run across,” Bloom concluded, but he had to wade

ple take a keen interest in because it may have euphoric

through a lot of scare-mongering headlines and propa-

effects.” Most kratomites agree that, like cannabis, kra-

ganda about the plant before he got there. A member of

tom is misunderstood and misrepresented in the media.

the coffee family, kratom (Mitragyna speciosa) has been

Some also take the cynical view that pharmaceutical

used in Indonesia, Malaysia, Papua New Guinea, and

companies oppose it because it has the potential to re-

Thailand for centuries to manage pain and boost energy,

place opiates with a less expensive, safer, and cheaper

but is under siege in the United States and other coun-

alternative that is too easily accessible to develop into a

tries. The Drug Enforcement Administration considered

high-profit medicine.

42 DECEMBER 2018 Las Vegas


*Name has been changed to protect Bloom from any legal repercussions that could stem from using this particular plant. We hate having to do this for a plant.

sensimag.com DECEMBER 2018 43


Kratom was blamed in a string of overdose deaths

IN LIMITED DOSES,

for stomach aches and di-

KRATOM BOOSTS

Since I started drinking a

a few years ago, and those headlines are what prompt-

E N E R G Y, C L A R I T Y, A N D

ed the DEA’s move to outlaw it. But if you dig a little deeper, you’ll find that most of the victims had other substances, including synthetic opithey died and there were oth-

DOSES, IT’S MUCH

have cleared up. It feels like

AND PSYCHOACTIVE

As Murray A. Holcomb, MD, an acute care surgeon at Seton Healthcare Family Center in Round Rock, Texas, explained in Clinical Psychiatry

kratom powder every day, gastrointestinal issues that

WITH SEDATIVE

er underlying causes.

protein shake made with

FOCUS. AT LARGER MORE OPIATE-LIKE,

oids, in their systems when

arrhea. (I can attest to this.

had plagued me for years a miracle.) On the flip side of that, overuse or overdose can cause stomach upset and vomiting in some people. According to a 127-page

EFFECTS, EVEN

analysis by the drug policy

HALLUCINATIONS.

sociates, kratom’s effects are

News: “Kratom is a partial ag-

consulting group Pinney Asgenerally mild and caffeine stimulant-like at lower dos-

onist. It doesn’t make you euphorically high, it doesn’t make

ages. “Consumption does not typically interfere with work

you quit breathing, and you don’t really have any withdraw-

or social activities and commitments,” the group observed

al symptoms, and no one is going to overdose on a natural

in recommending kratom be regulated as a natural supple-

plant—because it will make them sick to their stomach.”

ment like St. John’s wort or valerian under the Food and Drug Administration’s Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act. “There

“Remarkably Low Risk of Serious Adverse Effects”

appears to be remarkably low risk of serious adverse effects

Kratom leaves contain alkaloids, including mitragy-

from kratom consumption as compared to opioids and oth-

nine and 7-hydroxymitragynine, that scientists believe

er common drugs of abuse,” the group stated.

act as agonists at the human opioid receptor. Studies

Green, red, and white strains of the plant are available,

have found it can be helpful in treating analgesia, in-

and each offers slightly different effects. Those effects are

flammation, depression, anxiety, and opioid withdrawal.

also dose-dependent. In limited doses (1 to 3 grams), kratom

Like synthetic opioids, kratom also slows food’s move-

boosts energy, clarity, and focus—much like coffee. At larger

ment through the digestive tract, which is why it’s been

doses (10 to 25 grams), it is much more opiate-like, bringing

used in Thailand and Indonesia as a traditional remedy

on sedation and psychoactive effects, even hallucinations

S

T

R

A

I

N

S

R E D - V E I N strains—the most popular and widely available—are calming and sedating. W H I T E - V E I N strains are more stimulating and energizing. G R E E N - V E I N strains enhance focus and energy, but are a bit more subtle. P U R P L E usually refers to a blend of several strains, usually with all three colors. Most strains also indicate the name of the country or region where the strain originated. Some popular names are Bali, Malaysia, Indo, Thai, Sumatra, Borneo, and Maeng da. Much like cannabis, kratom’s many different strains have different effects on every individual, so experimenting is the best way to find the right one for you. Some generalities do apply. 44 DECEMBER 2018 Las Vegas


are reported, though rarely. A typical dose is 1 to 8 grams. When you start to approach 10 grams, Joe Rogan explained in a recent podcast: “This will fuck you up, this stuff.” For Bloom, who has come to the conclusion that less

R

E

C

I

P

E

S

Miracle Kratom Protein Shake

is more with kratom, 1.5 to 2.5 grams swallowed in cap-

• 1–3 grams kratom powder (or preferred dose)

sules in the evening is just right. He doesn’t enjoy the

• 1/3 cup protein powder

taste of kratom and citrus juice in the “toss and wash”

• 1 cup frozen fruit(s) of choice

method many people use to ingest it, and he also finds

• 1 banana

dosing more accurate and predictable with capsules.

• 1 1/2 cup almond or coconut milk

“I think it’s important for everyone to do their own research and draw their own conclusions,” Bloom says. “A good place for people to start is on Reddit. People should spend a bunch of time on the message boards there, where they will learn from the best source of data—the

TO MAKE: Combine ingredients and blend until

smooth. (I mix mine in a Bilaca single-serve blender with Garden of Life raw organic protein powder and a kratom strain called Red Vein Borneo.)

people who actually use it.”

Kratom Tea

Extractions for Potency and Tripping

• 1–3 grams kratom powder (or preferred dose)

Kratom can also be blended into other food or brewed

• 1–2 cups boiling water

into tea. For more psychoactive effects, kratomites ex-

TO MAKE: Combine ingredients in small saucepan.

tract the alkaloids and partial mu opioid agonists using

Simmer gently over low heat for 30 minutes.

alcohol and/or heat, just like cannabis users extract can-

Strain into a cup using a fine mesh strainer. Can

nabinoids. Extracts are much more potent than pure raw

be drunk hot or cold.

powder, which generally delivers few if any psychoactive effects, and should be taken in much smaller doses.

ICS

ET

M SH

KU

Available in dispensaries and online www.HotMessKushmetics.com

sensimag.com DECEMBER 2018 45


Many experts believe extracts are more addictive and suggest avoiding them, as Bloom does, because he prefers the natural product, literally ground leaves from the trees, usually harvested by small family businesses deep in the rainforests of southeast Asian countries. Although rare in the United States, some users in Thailand looking to get high make a kratom cocktail called a 4x100, a mixture of dried kratom leaves, cough syrup, Coca-Cola, and ice that’s popular there, where kratom has been illegal since 1943 (which has more to do with boosting opium taxes than anything else). Because these are often adulterated with things like tranquilizers, methamphet-

RESOURCES

amine, opiates, benzodiazepines, and even DEET mosqui-

Kratom is available online and at head shops in states where it’s legal, though quality varies drastically. It’s imperative you do your homework before investing. Debate about how to find the best, consistent kratom vendors rages online. Some people connect directly with farmers via social media, while others rely on retailers. Some of these retailers refer to kratom as an ingredient for candlemaking or some other guise because of the FDA restriction on human consumption.

to repellent (a required ingredient in many recipes), these cocktails have done a lot to contribute to kratom’s bad name, even though most users in the United States consume it in simple, natural, and safe powder and tea form. It’s up to everyone who benefits from kratom to fight back when the government and media make inaccurate statements and vilify the plant, Bloom says. “After doing your own research and getting comfortable that it is a good thing for you—and society at large—write your Congress members, spread the word, and correct misinformation out there whenever you can.”

46 DECEMBER 2018 Las Vegas

The following sources have been around for some time and get decent reviews. DG Botanicals // DGBOTANICALS.COM

You must become a member to order from this site.

HerbalSalvation // HERBAL-SALVATION.COM The Ravens Apothecary // THERAVENSAPOTHECARY.COM Socal Herbal Remedies // SOCALHERBALREMEDIES.COM


sensimag.com DECEMBER 2018 47


PHOTOGRAPHY: PETRA JEZKOVA, JERUEL CANLAS, SHANE O’NEAL, JERRY METELLUS

CIRCUS COUTURE

This year, the Circus Couture immersive theatre Encompass emphasized the importance of space and design in a sensual environment. The annual event benefits the Children’s Specialty Center of Nevada, the state’s only nonprofit clinic treating kids with cancer that never turns away anyone because they don’t have medical insurance or can’t pay for treatment.

48 DECEMBER 2018 Las Vegas

Where: Brooklyn Bowl Las Vegas When: October 12, 2018 For: Children’s Specialty Cancer


Green Flower Support

The Green Flower Certification Program elevates and validates your knowledge of cannabis, raising the level of trust, credibility and skill in the cannabis industry. Increase your knowledge and confidence by enrolling online, passing the test and receiving your Green Flower Certification.

GET ON THE LIST

www.Green-Flower.com/Academy

sensimag.com DECEMBER 2018 49


{HereWeGo } by D E B B I E H A L L

NATIVE SON Radial Symmetry pays homage to original inhabitants of Vegas. Radial Symmetry, a 16-by-16-foot metal sculpture of two

The exploration of the craft of the Southern Paiute basket

Paiute baskets leaning on each other, welcomes people en-

weaving demonstrates the tribe’s artistic drive as embodied

tering the Arts District and revitalized Main Street. The piece

by today’s artisans. Since the Pauites were a nomad tribe,

by artist and 30-year resident Luis Varela-Rico represents

their intricately designed baskets celebrated the food and

Vegas’ native culture in a contemporary setting as it stands at

goods they lovingly transported throughout their journeys.

Garces Avenue where Main and Commerce streets intersect.

The baskets were important to their survival but also a can-

Long before millions of visitors descended on the Strip, the

vas to share their happiness.

Las Vegas Paiute Tribe called Southern Nevada home. After

The sculpture symbolizes the transformation and func-

the meadows were settled and became known as Las Vegas,

tionality of Arts District architecture, which integrates both

the Las Vegas Paiute Colony was established north of down-

art and beauty. As the baskets lean on each other, they send

town. The sovereign nation now owns and operates NuWu

a message of community and support.

Cannabis Marketplace located on those tribal lands. 50 DECEMBER 2018 Las Vegas


Sensi Magazine - Las Vegas (December 2018)  

Sensi Magazine December 2018 - Las Vegas Digital Edition

Sensi Magazine - Las Vegas (December 2018)  

Sensi Magazine December 2018 - Las Vegas Digital Edition