Based On A True Story
An Italian grandma walks into an Amsterdam coffee house.
Grandma: "My son told me about this place and that you're very famous."
Barista: "Well, we sure are! How can I help you?"
Grandma: "My son said there's something I must try here. Let me check." (fumbles and strokes phone screen)
Barista: "Well, we specialize in coffee. Maybe a cappuccino or latte?"
Grandma: "Eh no... My son told me I must try your erm...space cake."
Barista: "... Well, I think you're at the wrong kind of coffeeshop."
Nope, you can't find them at a Starbucks or Bagels & Beans. It's definitely not your grandma's average cake. Many Amsterdam visitors who have tried our space cakes for the first time end up dialling 112 (our emergency hotline) after eating too much of the 420 dessert, causing waves of panic and nausea.
So what's a space cake?
How should you enjoy this cake responsibly?
We debunk the myths and answer your questions.
What's A Space Cake?
Space Cake Debunked!
Julia Child famously once said, "A party without cake is just a meeting." Indeed there's something nostalgic about cake. This concoction of flour, butter, cream, eggs and sugar brings us back to memories of birthday's, anniversary's, and childhood. However, in Amsterdam, a space cake, sometimes known as "special cake", can be a force to be reckoned with.
A space cake is cake baked with canna-butter (that's cannabis butter), besides your regular ingredients. It's made by boiling hash or weed with butter in water over time. That means this cake gives you much more than just a sugar rush!
Cakes Do's And Don'ts
A little at a time. Yes, it's delicious, but (most) space cakes in Amsterdam are mighty strong. Most coffeeshops do have instructions on the cake (as shown above). But your best bet is to consult the coffeeshop staff for advice, whether or not it's your first time doing so! You won't regret it.
Give it time. Smoking hits you in a matter of minutes since a smaller part of THC enters your system immediately. Eating is a different story. It takes time for your body to digest the THC. Up to 1,5 hours. And much of your experience is dependent on your metabolism and the state of your mind. So, go easy!
Cut the alcohol. Sure, Charles Bukowski famously said, "Find what you love and let it kill you." A cocktail of alcohol and cannabis may not kill you, but it can be a recipe for an unpleasant experience.
Always avoid street dealers. Always visit a coffeeshop where the staff are licensed to help you in making the best decisions. Street dealers aren't your best friends. We've had some fatalities in the past. Better be safe than sorry!
Eating a space cake is different from smoking. It can have a more intense and lasting effect (around 5 to 8 hours) compared to its smokable counterparts. When the cannabis enters one's system, most people feel a creative high, laughter for as long as it lasts, a loss of the perspective of time. Having too much (and too soon) however, would produce unpleasant effects including paranoia, nausea, and a slight "hangover".
So here are some cake do's and don'ts!
What If I Don't Like The Effects?
Breathe. Relax. This, too, shall pass. Just take some deep breaths, breathe easy and let the panic slide...
Have something sweet. A coca cola, chocolate bar or anything sweet would help level out your blood sugars, making you feel better faster.
Drink up. Hydration is key, but just remember to steer clear of alcohol, kids!
In 2012, 517 cannabis-related calls were made to Amsterdam's ER. Binging on cannabis led mostly visitors to some pretty distressing situations. Some folks feel like they're on the verge of a breakdown, others experience nausea, most panic because of the loss of control. So here's the thing.
No. One. Has. Ever. Died. From. Cannabis.
If you don't like the effects, here are some tips to follow:
Best Space Cakes In Amsterdam
Many coffeeshops in Amsterdam make their own space cakes - ranging from artisanal chocolate "space"try (think pastry) from a Michelin-star pastry chef, to a humble but mighty butter space cake.
Here are our top 3 coffee shops where you can get the best space cakes!
Coffeeshop Amsterdam and Boerejongens Coffeeshops - Oh boy, where do we begin? These guys work with Michelin-star pastry chefs to make tantalizing spacetry (get it?). So delicious that stopping at half might be hard. Snickers and banana and passion fruit tartlettes are our favourites, but they have many other delicious flavours. Yum!
Coffeeshop Paradox - If strength is an indicator of goodness, then the space cake at Paradox is up to something real good. 1 entire gram in a thin slice of buttery cake. This is one for the brave. A simple, homemade cake that packs a mighty punch! Be careful with this one!