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Cold. Gold. Solventless. Say. Less. Part 1: Methods, Dynamics, & the Sauce

Updated: May 17

Them boys with the dirty little word now associated with their names, proved to be the beacons of truth and light for an emerging retail industry. Some of the originals to this way of the world and wisdom of the flower, now reduced to being called, dare I say it, ...

cold gold solventless logo and hash rosin jar
Cold Gold Solventless

a "Legacy"- market brand?

Invading On A Way of Life

As the corporate world invades a sacred space, its brands like Cold Gold Solventless that hang on to the hope– the hope for a decent and humane industry, focused on people and informed consumption, rather than preying upon the uninformed. As those who railed against cannabis, investing and profiting from the sprawling prison-industrial complex, now push their chips in on cannabis, we the people get to witness the contradictions of a sociopath, aka the 'corporate mind'.


We were lucky enough to meet up with Cold Gold Solventless several times to discuss their brand, products, methods, and so much more. Always generous, these guys put us on to a grip of flavors to review. I'll share some insights into our conversations and a few key aspects setting the Emerald Triangle's Cold Gold Solventless apart, before diving in on their immaculate new single-source and third-party flavors.


The Best & The Worst: Rosin Badder

Some of the best Terps we've ever come across are cold-cure live hash rosins, however the same can be said for some of the worst. With cold-cures and rosin sauce too-often becoming answers to lower quality, flavorless fresh press rosin, there remain producers like Cold Gold Solventless, whose aim and experience allow the rosin to dictate the ideal texture. Only years of experience lead to this type of hands-on know-how, while an endless stream of new hash makers continue to give rosin sauce & badder a bad name. These terp crusaders and their Cold Gold Frozen Cannabis resins, breathe new life into these ambiguous and often arbitrary methods.

Despite my usual preference for fresh press rosin, a quick and fresh side by side comparison made their cold-cure the clear cut winner. They even brought me around a bit on the idea of rosin sauce, with yet another full-circle story.

Concept Dynamics & Theory

Hand-Wash or Machine Mixed Hash Rosin

Distinguishing themselves from the flock, Cold Gold Solventless was happy to go into detail and explain their theories around the ice water wash and the rosin press. While hand-wash versus machine-wash dominated early solventless discourse, the dynamics of each method can drastically differ. The discussions over machine agitation (of the frozen cannabis, purified water, and ice), versus hand mixed (think boat oar), each present a long list of variables, stifling this overly-generalized discussion.

"Less time spent in water + less time in between heated steel plates= Cold Gold Solventless and some of the best terps in the world."

Applicable Hash Maker Variables

Some specifics each hash maker must figure out regardless of mix method include: How many wash cycles? How long does each wash cycle last? How many grams of frozen cannabis do you wash at once? After the wash, the temperature of the rosin press, the duration or time each press takes, and how many grams of hash to press into rosin at once, only scrape the surface of the many variables in question. Include the specifics of when to harvest or wash water temperature, and the list grows quite long.

hash rosin

Distinguished Resins

With countless batches under their belts, (including years of commercial washes and a list of Emerald Cup Awards) their insight is well received. Without giving away too much information, Cold Gold has drastically reduced the time of each wash, as well as reducing the amount of time the hash sits in the rosin press. Less time spent submerged in water + less time in between heated steel plates= Cold Gold Solventless and some of the best terps in the world. No wonder their Rainbow-Belts taste so good.

hash rosin jar
Pre Whip. Curing Jar of Rosin from Cold Gold Solventless

Small Batch-Big Press

While it would appear that the smaller the batch the better, there's one area that comes as a surprise. Rather than pressing minimal amounts of hash at once in many smaller presses (which seemed labor intensive but ideal), the yield quality actually improves by pressing a larger volume of hash (trichomes) at once. Pikes Peak strikes again... A concept that makes sense with more forgiveness for pristine trichome heads. It's safe to assume that less is damaged by pressing a larger quantity at once.

Hash Strategy

It's amazing to hear some strategy in the hash game, as heady questions are often met with a strange stare, a laugh, a sideways look, but rarely an answer. There is an endless range of potential scenarios, questions, and concerns still to be asked, let alone answered. For many, the hash strategy goes no further than efficiency and the bottom line (evident by declining retail rosin quality). For those who make this their life and then their livelihood, the innate desire to improve quality will remain alive.

Rosin badder cold gold solventless hash and rosin
Fresh-Whip. A Spectacular Jar of Cold-Cure Badder from Cold Gold Solventless

Rosin Sauce

Speaking of strategy, let’s look at the sauce. The idea of crystalized cannabis never sat well with me, but as always, we're only looking for the best. First let's distinguish methods as solventless diamonds are often confused with rosin sauce, before discussing something truly monumental.

What Are Solventless "THC-A Diamonds"?

A method exists where hash is pressed into rosin at high temperature, causing all of the terpenes to melt off. What remains is a hardened patty that can be cut up into small pieces and passed along as solventless "diamonds" or "solventless THC". Producers often pour the remaining terpene fraction back over the hardened THC "diamonds" in the jar. The hardened THC is no better or worse than lab extracted distillates and is often sold as a sauce. An interesting discovery and concept, but not one that catches my eye.

hash rosin badder

The Real Rosin Sauce

A very different idea exists, as THC turns to a micr0-crystallization. Through increased temperatures and a sealed glass jar, this post-production method (first used for live resin bho) also creates a rosin sauce. No solvents, no chemicals, nothing but ice and water, heat, pressure, and some patience.

As the THCA and terpenes naturally begin to separate in the jar, we are left with a rock-salt consistency of small THCA diamonds in a pool of liquid terpenes. Now the beauty of this method lies in the fact that nothing is ever separated manually and everything is contained within each step of the process, unlike solvent extractions separation of terpenes from cannabinoids. This requires BHO makers to "re-infuse" or recombine whatever liquid terpenes remain, much like solventless "diamonds" explained above. For Cold Gold's rosin sauce, the separation of terpenes and cannabinoids happens naturally while everything remains sealed in the jar.

hash rosin badder in a jar

Increased Terpenes in Aged Hashish!?

The results of this rosin sauce process provoked an interesting claim and discussion. Trying not to slaughter this idea too much, it was once believed that hashish gains terpenes as it ages and cures. Some ten to fifteen years since first hearing this rather nonsensical claim from Frenchy, we may have come full-circle.

A Scientific Explanation

Rather than those magical terpenes appearing from thin air, there may be a scientific explanation for the process causing minimal terpene percentage increase in aged hashish. That's to say, there isn't an increase in terpenes, but an increased percentage of terpenes. The idea that terpenes erode lipids and waxes, or impurities resulting in higher terpene percentages over time, may apply to the rosin sauce process, as well. Only an enormous amount of testing and research can say for certain and until then preference plays full-time.

Assuming It's True...

With that said, who is to say the small increase in terpenes results in anything noticeable or desirable? While Cold Gold explained why or how the process occurs, they were just as quick to remind us that this doesn't necessarily mean the product is improved. It's easy to make one wrong step and fall into these kinds of thinking traps. While it is generally accepted that the presence of increased terpenes is desirable, it's only a small slice of the story, often removed from context. We need the testing and research for a global picture, rather than hanging our hats on any one detail.

hash rosin badder
Rosin Pre-Whip. On the heat mat and ready for the whip. Notice that thick level of viscous terpenes on the surface!

It was agreeable that most rosin sauces are not ideal and many strains simply do not want to perform. In today's market, a long list of new hash labs are appearing and after a few errors or mistakes, the sauce becomes the unfortunate victim. For the few that do express themselves properly, the rosin sauce is another interesting aspect of the new solventless world.

hash rosin being mixed
Action Shot: COLD GOLD on the WHIP! Check them out and give them a follow on Instagram @coldgoldsolventless

Sauce Or Badder? Rosin-Off!!!

I've heard a long list of theories for why lipids and waxes should be removed from rosin, by the same people using cardboard-gas-station-blunts to smoke flower out of. We have always smoked lipids and waxes along with an insane amount of plant material, leaving me intrigued with rosin sauce, but certainly not for this reason. If science can deduct a clear-cut winner, we're all in, but until that time preference remains with the cold-cure. Every now and then however, a batch of rosin sauce can be truly unreal, keeping it on the radar from brands like Cold Gold Solventless and others you trust.

In Continuation...

With so much insight we didn't come close to cultivar reviews, but will launch another article shortly on some of their new single source flavors. It's harvest time boys and girls and Cold Gold Solventless is a name to remember.


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