What is the difference between Hashish and Marijuana?

Sitka hash-masters ply their trade to coax hashishene and cakiness out of the material to honor the plant and 1,000-year-old traditions.

The Daily Kief wants to take you on a brief tour of history, to share some fun background, and educate you in the ways of hashish so you’ll know what hash refers to for all time.  In the ontology of hash, the story of the substance’s harvesting/collection is filled with fun and whimsy.  Please read on to gain reference points on the origins of hashish and why it is a unique form of cannabis. We will discuss harvesting techniques, the unique qualities of kief, and the characteristics of hash.


A citizen of certain parts of the world going back some 1,000+ years would tell you this: hashish or charas as then known is obtained from running stark naked through the fields, thwacking one’s body with either dull blades or wooden slats to free the sticky shake from one’s own skin. Or for the more modest among them, wearing a leather skirt and skimming the trichomes from their animal skin was de rigueur before going back into the fields for more according to “A Treasury of Hashish” by Dr. Alexander Sumach, THC. “Since the earliest times, the secrets of cannabis-induced dreams were reserved only for the great priests and shamans (with the occasional prince or doctor) who spread the practice to holy men from other regions.” p.10. Picture these amusing scenes and laugh kindly with these folks, who show such dedication to their hashish harvesting.

These people are Sitka Hash House’s primogenitures. Today at Sitka Hash House (Washington and California versions), fully dressed hash-masters use kief dust that fell off the flower as the plant is being trimmed. Either Sitka purchase kief from the farm where “Resin encrusted hairs near the flowers snap off as the plants dry and fall into a golden shower of dust onto a clean sheet below. Great caution is taken in preventing stray leaf fragments from mixing with the flower particles.” Ibid, p. 34. or Sitka tumbles or “kiefs” flower at Sitka Hash House to gather the kief in our own collection bins. Both methods for accumulating kief are acceptable. These specimens are handled with care all through the process so we can deliver on our promise, just as the ancients did.


Kief is derived from what hash-master Nick Saad refers to as “diamonds” (Sitka YouTube Video). This precious and potent material falls away from the mother plant to generate small piles of gold/rust/tan/crimson dust. Color depends upon the particular strain and species and geo-region. Kief adopts a variety of tints within a range of natural earth tones that indicate that the peak of resination has been reached.  As one particular terpene is released, called hashishene, every hash cube possesses a deep, musky odor within a band of aromas that shares the unique and pungent properties of hashish.  “A single whiff is one of the most reliable tests of merit.” Ibid. p. 33.

These crown jewels of the cannabis plant are packed with power. Just as in yonder days, Sitka hash-masters ply their trade to coax hashishene and cakiness out of the material to honor the plant and 1,000-year-old traditions.  They work the material by hand, patiently twisting and physically kneading the kief into a harder putty until this self-satisfying manual labor unfolds into a substance textured very much like a waxy fudge or rich nougat. When the dry-sifted resin is broken open, compounds within the trichome head are exposed to light and air. This curing process, unique to traditional hashish, is responsible for the unmistakable “hashy” flavor, exotic aroma, ultra-smooth smoke, and strong effect known to hash smokers worldwide for thousands of years. Be prepared for a deep, rich, flavor journey.


What will the next generation bring?  Industrial-sized agitators, humongous micron screens, and flash freezers that can handle larger quantities of biomass? Sitka views these developments with some skepticism. Speed and volume doesn’t always lead to better batter.  At Sitka Hash House, we define a craftsman as one who puts heart into everything he/she does. After all, one tends to get out (of life) what one puts in.  Therefore Sitka hews to time-honored traditions from a pre-industrial age even if it means lower output and lower margins because we must remain true to the plant and to the ancients, our forebears.  


We take pride in the time and care we devote to delivering the very best hashish into your pipe, spliff, or joint. Deeply admiring the plant and its traditions, we hope our work exemplifies how cannabinoids and terpenes distinctively work together to create a special experience.



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