7 Things You Need To Know About LA's New Cannabis Cafe
The country's first cannabis cafe opened its doors this week in West Hollywood and, lucky for us, it's four blocks north of the Green Entrepreneur offices. So yesterday the team jumped on a few Bird scooters and high-tailed it to the high-concept restaurant to see if it lived up to the hype. The verdict: the cannabis cafe is here to stay.
Here's an insider's guide on what to expect.
1. It's the first restaurant of its kind in America.
California legalized recreational marijuana in 2018 but up until yesterday, there were very few places people could consume it legally in public. Thankfully, the brilliant minds behind Lowell Herb Co. worked with the progressive city of West Hollywood to become the first business in the U.S. to be granted a fully legal cannabis consumption license. What does this mean? Customers can smoke, dab, and vape cannabis at their table. Customers can also bring their own weed for small "tokage" fee. Kids not allowed. This restaurant is for 21 plus only.
You can sit inside or at the bar.
Or outside on the patio
2. Sommeliers called 'Flower Hosts' take your weed orders.
After your seated at your table, you're greeted by an iPad-wielding Flower Host. This lovely person is well versed in the cannabis menu, which includes vapes, flower, concentrates, and edibles. Pipes and bongs are available for a $20 rental fee. In general, the prices aren't cheap. Flower options range from $55 to $75 for an eighth ounce. A gram of live rosin from the esteemed 710 Labs, goes for as much as $135.
But you're paying for the experience as well as the quality--which is among California's best.
Our flower host Shay describes the restaurant as a "part of history,"
3. The food's delicious, but it's not cannabis-infused.
Chef Andrea Drummer has worked at restaurants all over the country, and it shows in her eclectic menu selection, which includes items such as vegan nachos and a Bahn Mi with succulent pork. Like the pot, all the food is farm to table, and Drummer admits that she tailored it to people who may have the munchies.
4. There are drinks on the menu, just not those kinds of drinks.
State law prohibits alcohol and cannabis to be sold in the same place, and you can't bring your own. But for the cottonmouths, there are still plenty of libations to choose from, including salted caramel milkshakes, pressed juice, Boylan's root beer, and lattes.
5. Cannabis is served on a silver tray with plenty of rolling paper and matches.
Before the food arrives, the cannabis makes its appearance via a silver tray. We ordered a Super Sour Diesel strain, a light Sativa which the menu described as "social, fun, euphoric." The Mendo Breath that promised to make us "heavy and sleepy" also sounded good, but this was the middle of the day and we knew we still had some work to do. Plus, we had to be able to ride the Bird scooters back to the office. Bonus, you can bring whatever you don't finish home with you.
6. Don't expect the place to smell like a Snoop Dogg concert.
The fine people at Lowell have gone out of their way to make sure their neighbors don't get a contact high every time they leave their homes. Powerful vents surround the restaurant, much like the ones used in Las Vegas to eliminate cigarette odor. This enables customers to enjoy the scenery clearly rather than through a thick plume of smoke. "You mostly know that cannabis is being consumed by the coughs that are going on," says Chef Drummer.
7. Stepping into this restaurant is stepping into history.
As our flower host Shay said, "Working here is like being part of history." There hasn’t been anything like the Lowell Cafe in over 100 years, back to a pre-prohibition era when there were cannabis tea pads. So if you find yourself in LA, find time to brave the long lines and visit the Lowell Cafe. And we strongly advise against riding a Bird scooter home.