Inside the Just-Opened Lowell Cafe

With every election cycle, a completely new state seems to legalize recreational marijuana. California was the first state to make in which legally available for medicinal purposes along with one of the first to make recreational use legal. in which’s no surprise, then, in which Los Angeles is actually the home of the country’s first cannabis cafe, Lowell Cafe. in which’s owned along with operated by Lowell Farms, a brand best known for their packs of pre-roll joints seen at various dispensaries along with Hollywood events. in which officially opened on Oct. 1 along with is actually the first of eight cannabis cafes set to open in West Hollywood from the next few months. They, along with the city, trust to create a design for the next level of cannabis tourism. 

Their website proclaims: “The end of prohibition is actually here”—which is actually the basis of their mission. For decades, marijuana enthusiasts have been forced to partake from the shadows (or in our cars), away through public view as if smoking is actually shameful. Yet cannabis is actually the most widely used “drug” from the globe along with according to a 2017 study one in seven people from the United States reported using marijuana. Walk through the streets of most American cities along with you’ll catch a whiff of the sticky-icky. 

Lowell Cafe sits on a 20,000 square foot lot on La Brea Ave on the edge of West Hollywood next to a Ralph’s supermarket along with across the street through a synagogue. You’ll know you’re from the right place because there’s a massive billboard above the building with an arrow pointing down telling you to “Eat, Drink & Smoke…Here!” The space itself consists of an indoor bar area with numerous tables for eating along with smoking, along with an adjacent outdoor garden patio seating 220 patrons. 

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The bar looks like in which should be serving craft cocktails although instead serves up food along with non-alcoholic beverages. There’s an indoor/outdoor ledge with stools in which connects the spaces along with keep in which airy. The patio has an earthy aesthetic with the wooden booths, vines running along the walls along with powerful air vents in which look like heat lamps. Trees provide some shade along with oxygen along with succulents along with desert flowers. in which’s a pothead garden tucked away through the bustling traffic of La Brea. along with in which doesn’t reek of weed on the sidewalk because those fans are working overtime. 

So what to expect when visiting Lowell Cafe? The No. 1 pro-tip is actually to make reservations. in which’s hard to say how long the walk-up wait is actually although there’s always some sort of line. in which could be 20 minutes or an hour-plus. Save yourself the drama along with reserve a table online. 

Once you enter, there is actually someone to check you in so you must have identification which will be scanned. Bringing in your own bongs, pipes, tobacco is actually prohibited. Visitors must be 21 or older along with you’ll see folks of all ages, L.A. natives, tourists, entertainment industry professionals, homegirls hanging out. Weed is actually a universal unifier. After a quick check-in, there’s a host stand where you give your name along with wait for your table. There’s a little outdoor waiting area (not for consumption) or you can wait by the bar along with take cute Instagram photos by their neon sign-branded wall.     

The cannabis menu is actually extensive; you can purchase numerous types of flower or bud (the plant itself), vapes, beverages, edibles along with if you truly want to go hard, concentrates (oils, waxes or hash in which have super-potent THC levels). There’s something for every type of cannabis consumer. Bongs are available for rent, along with the cannabis host offers free rolling papers along with lighters are plentiful. Though in which’s important to note in which most of the flower sold comes in pre-rolls or straight-up buds with relatively high THC ratios. For those of us who prefer higher ratio CBD flowers along with less paranoia, there’s a pre-roll pack of all 5 marijuana cigarettes through Caliva in which have only 8 percent THC so you can still get a buzz without freaking out. Just be sure to safely consume especially because there’s a 0-minute limit on table seating. Consider in which when purchasing edibles.

While there’s no cannabis-infused food available, the menu was designed to pair well with cannabis from the same way restaurants pair food with wine. There’s a plethora of munchies: jalapeno mac & cheese bites, gooey grilled cheese sandwiches, along having a baked alaska ice cream concoction. If you’re super hungry (along with you probably will be), there’s jerk lamp chops, sticky tamarind wings, burgers with fries, along with hefty salads. Vegan options are also plentiful including the (delicious) vegan nachos, cauliflower banh mi along with black bean burger, which caught my eye. although instead I had the pork banh mi along with in which was juicy along with properly seasoned. Because in which’s a cannabis cafe, their appetizers are made for stoners. A well-liked along with highly recommended favorite is actually the “Street Corn,” a heaping bowl of corn, bacon, cojita cheese, Corn Pops, along with Flamin’ Hot Cheetos. I’ll admit I was hesitant about in which although after in which joint in which was heavenly. 

Because of legal issues in California, you pay for the cannabis along with the food separately. The owners had to split the business in two: one as a restaurant along with one as a “cannabis retail establishment.” This particular means there is actually an outdoor cafe in which only serves food along with beverages (including alcohol) although when you’re from the indoor restaurant along with garden patio, you’re essentially ordering food through the adjacent restaurant. A smart workaround. So you’ll have a waitress who brings you food along with non-cannabis drinks, along having a flower host who specifically brings you the herb. Both were super attentive along with knowledgeable, producing helpful food along with cannabis recommendations especially if you’re a marijuana novice. 

The only major quirk is actually in which visitors can’t access the bathroom directly through the cafe. You have to exit the restaurant along with walk around to the back of the building. in which’s definitely a logistical inconvenience although at least the bathrooms have funky decor. The walls are covered in a collage of celebrities along with cultural icons who are famous for their love of weed. Smoky images of Bob Marley, Rihanna, Snoop, Cheech along with Chong, along with John Lennon exhaling are plastered above the toilets maintaining the vibe. 

Lowell Cafe is actually open through 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily so you can wake along with bake, create your own happy hour, or come for a nightcap. Its biggest selling point is actually the novelty of being able to smoke your weed in peace at a restaurant or cafe. However, in places like California along with arguably all over the globe, folks smoke everywhere: beaches, parks, parties, backyard BBQs. although there’s a particular freedom to being in community having a bunch of cannabis lovers enjoying bud in public without fear.   

Lowell Cafe, 1201 North La Brea Avenue, West Hollywood, California 90038

Open daily 10 a.m.-10 p.m. 

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