Beginning at midnight Oct. 1, Portland medical-marijuana dispensaries can sell to the general public. That means the city now has 100-plus places where you can buy weed legally.
Today, WW published the Potlander, a complete guide to every shop in town. A team of seven writers spent several months visiting them for the city’s first comprehensive, journalistic guide to Portland dispensaries—beware the shameless paid content other weekly newspapers are peddling as “cannabis guides” to Oregon.
They decided to go to all the shops in town. It took 80 hours, and they came away with approximately 105 grams of weed. There are a lot of great shops out there, but six stood out for them.
There’s a calming presence here. From the carved wooden signs to the relaxed budtenders, Calyxes is the high-end cigar bar of dispensaries. Owner, founder and master grower John Bayes has better taste than most of us can yet appreciate, but there’s no pretension—just some of the best flower around. Strains effects are clearly marked on the store’s daily menu, giving newbies something to look forward to and pros more of an idea of what they’re about to consume. While it’s not an easy find for people not already in Southwest, this is where you go to geek out on weed. Pro tip: Ask the budtenders for Bayes’ current second-favorite strain.
There’s no better place to learn about cannabis as medicine than this Apple Store-like location. Owner and head budtender Jeremy Plumb works with Phylos Bioscience to bring today’s molecular genetic research capabilities to the cannabis industry, guaranteeing we’ll hear about Farma when it’s proven cannabis cures cancer or at least when the best topicals can treat your grandma’s arthritis. Don’t be afraid to take your baby-boomer parents here; it’s your best bet to get them to accept that cannabis is actually medicine—and they’ll really like the weed. Pro tip: Feel free to describe the exact high you’re looking for. These guys will get you there.
On Holgate next to the new Orange Line MAX stop, Pakalolo has one of the biggest and coolest-looking joints in town. The shop’s offerings start at 1 gram—that’s normally the large size—and increase by 0.5 grams twice and then more than double to a 4.5-gram “Fatboy” packed with Obama Kush. Remember, it’s puff, puff, pass, and try not to salivate on the filter—we all have to touch that part, man. Pro tip: Don’t be afraid to ask for a custom joint.
Part art gallery, part social-justice organization, and part cannabis dispensary, this place has a cohesiveness that wraps around anyone walking in. From its focus on local artists to giving 10 percent of its profits to causes it personally supports, Panacea feels like a place for liberals wanting to support a cause without going full social-justice warrior. Its insight into helping out while curing disease feels genuine, and it would be hard to walk out without a smile. Pro tip: Leave the snark at the door, it’s not a good look here.
At this 1-week-old shop (too new to make it into our glossy), it’s hard not to fall in love with stellar presentation. From the vials of hash to the clear plastic containers of flower, all set on black, nonslip pads on dark wood, this is what a high-end dispensary should look like. Inside feels masculine—more steampunk than Wild West—and spartan, which gives the product shelves added visual weight. The owner-grower-budtender displayed impressive, easy-to-read information cards with grow-site, analytical and pricing details on every product, something you’d think would be standard but definitely isn’t. Pro tip: Watch out for the Betty Banana, it’s one of a kind.
I only had time to go one dispensary with a bud of mine (get it huh huh). We barely made the evening cut off time. We hung with peeps in the waiting room, who were friendly and eager to legally purchase their weed. The staff, despite exhaustion from working all day weighing buds and selling peeps various strains of cannabis, were all super friendly and fun to talk too. It was a quaint and an inviting space. A lil bit to much light but I am thinking that’s normal for dispensaries so you can better see the buds details of chronic crystals. I purchased the YUMMY, MASS KOOSH, and…. I already forgot. What were we talking about?