At the dawn of legalization in Washington State in 2012… Nick and Shawn didn’t know how life was about to turn upside down.
Colleagues at a gaming company, they came into the office and learned the business had been dissolved, suits arrived out of the elevator banks straight out of the matrix, and ushered everyone to the exits, file boxes in hand (except for Shawn who cleverly slipped his computer out the fire escape).
Later, Nick invites Shawn for a drink in Seattle’s Ballard district, once a sleepy fisherman’s hamlet abutting the Union Bay canal.
Pondering their next move, Nick, born in Eastern Washington, and 5th-generation Lebanese tells Shawn: “Look, the business right now is hashish and flower joints.”
Serendipitously, state cannabis licenses are still open for 30 days. Had their employer been sold one month later, or a few months earlier, the opportunity to start Sitka may not have been. As it worked out, the universe nudged a pair of friends to heed the call and take a leap into the unknown and embark on a new adventure.
Backing up a few decades… Jeff, fresh out of college, curious and adventurous, took a trip to Europe with no itinerary or specific destination.
Traversing the Netherlands, he made a momentous stop in Amsterdam. One night Jeff found himself in a dimly lit Indonesian restaurant at the Monnikenstraat, on the edge of the red-light district.
His American accent gained the attention of a local Dutch woman, a patron of the place. Conversation ensued. Travel tales were shared, and late at night, she suggested he come partake in a smoking session at her place.
It was an experience that changed Jeff’s life. As she retrieved a small wooden box, adorned with middle eastern motifs, she spoke of reaching a different type of psychedelic experience.
As an American, this was something he had never before seen or heard.
Jeff noticed the curious preparation of a joint, which seemed to be cannabis but also something else. “Try this”, she said. As he drew in his first smoke, experiencing firsthand what the ancients called Hashish of the Levant, Jeff got a glimpse of an exotic, sublime world that no marijuana joint had ever revealed.
The door to the Hashish world had opened and Jeff ventured in — it felt both strangely new and mystical, but also much like coming home…
Back to 2013… in another twist of fate, Jeff met Nick and Shawn at a nascent industry trade show.
The trio hit it off and zoomed in to focus on the latent consumer demand for fine Hashish products that none others appeared ready to serve.
Soon thereafter, Casey responded to a call for community support and joined the Sitka team. Decades of experience in operations were just what the young company needed.
Resources were slim, but they kept at it, figuring things out — and inventing their way forward.
Sleepless nights. Edison-style experimentation to craft that perfect product…Like a movie script, all of a sudden: a breakthrough!
Nick Saad, in a flash of insight, perhaps channeling an old grand, grand, grand uncle… comes up with a hash-making process that is both old and new, invoking a way that is extremely time consuming because of its intimate attention to detail but well worth it, resulting in a full spectrum hashish with an incomparable taste and consistency.
Visitors from Europe often say Sitka hash beats what they find in the old Amsterdam coffee shops.
“Sitka Hash House is truly like nothing else out there”.
After years of mastering Sitka’s processes, we’ve come to define some guiding principles for hash-making:
Insist on demanding farming and curing methods and quality controls that most consider excessive. That’s the starting point.
Working arduously until arriving upon the most delicious kief. Then carefully applying Sitka’s proprietary processes that protect the integrity of the terpenes and ultimately delivers a better flavor, full spectrum, with a richer and brighter finish.
To date, only Nick prepares the Hash. Only three keys exist, one for each of the founders, to the room where the hash-making magic happens.
With 9 of the top 10 selling hash products in its home in the Pacific Northwest, and with California opening, the mission hasn’t changed.
It was never about building a global corporation, and it isn’t now. Our mission was and remains simple:
CRAFT HASH PRODUCTS WITH SUCH CARE
THAT THE WHOLE WORLD FINDS WONDER.