Location: Olympia, WA
abudandleaf.com - Your Cannabis Concierge
Visited: 08/31/2015 03:08 PM
Lowest-cost: $10 options - several flowers (limit 1), edibles, capsules
Budtenders: Avery - chill, smiling, experienced, outgoing, cool
Daniel - calm, smiling, strain knowledge, MMJ background
Joe - outgoing, expressive, upbeat, FNG
Overall: Return and Recommend!
Highlights: Top shelf quality. Lively atmosphere. Excellent service. Good value.
A Bud & Leaf is in a small home tucked back around the corner from, and directly behind, the IHOP. Pulling into the lot, there's a bit of paved driveway and walkway, but mostly the lot is relatively thinly graveled. It stretches the length of the whole building, and then some. While a bit unique, it can definitely fit quite a few cars. Egress isn't difficult either, there's plenty of space to turnaround, come, and go.
Opening the light screen door, the faint scent of a delicate nag champa fills the air. As soon as you enter the store, you're greeted with a high end, chill little vestibule and a big lounge. Right away the artwork is great. They had color prints made of some of the very highest quality marijuana or maybe they're done by hand by some serious enthusiast. It's fantastic. You get a glimpse of the home this once was, but once you're inside it really feels like a store. In fact, it feels like a high-end boutique. The art, the furnishings, the shelving, the space all work together to build an impression of quality, taste, and consideration.
When you enter, there's a soft right and you end up in a nice lounge area with excellent, comfortable seating. This is a great place to sit and chill while waiting your turn with the Budtenders. This display table is fantastic, and I'd love to have one in my office. On the walls you can see the gorgeous, weird pot art. Inside of this display, and all the other display cases, you can see some doilies. These nicely-made little doilies protect the shelves from glass and metal, but they all also have some sort of marijuana motif. Not quite what you expect when staring at a crochet doily.
From the lounge you get a view of this busy little store. The glass cabinets are all laid out very attractively, every single area looks to be it's own high-end section. I took this picture standing in the lounge area, the door is to the far left.
In the glass cabinet you first encounter they have concentrates, capsules, and transdermal patches. All of the concentrates were high-end, premium brands with excellent packaging. They had a huge array of activated-cannabinoid capsules - they're the first store I've seen all the different types of Fairwinds-brand capsules in stock. Most stores I've been to have one or two varieties. The effects are significant and very easy to imbibe, all with very long legs. You can see some more detail on those marijuana-themed doilies down at the bottom, holding some incredible artistic glass.
Right here in the first display you'll likely look into, they had something I'd not seen in a store outside of Seattle - transdermal patches! It was described as 12-hours of a wave-like high that would change in intensity as more THC was released into the blood stream. Sounds fantastic. They also had single-serve capsules of BHO, 10mg at a time.
As you enter the main shopping area of the store, right in front of you - across from the actual marijuana - are quite a few product shelves, including one with some great glass bongs and some more awesome marijuana doilies.
Turning into the main shopping area, where all the bud is kept, you have a great amount of counterspace dedicated to marijuana. To the left are a variety of edibles. Washington edibles are pretty awesome, even if the WSLCB set a ridiculously low single-serve dosage - just 10mg per dose. Based on the experience of nearly every person I have ever spoken to about this topic, this is a fair dosage only for someone who very rarely or never smokes marijuana flower.
For an everyday smoker with a high tolerance, you're paying quite a bit more for edibles. I firmly believe that if a dose was 20mg, we'd see the same exact pricing structure for edibles now (about $10 a dose, $25 for 3). Meanwhile, one edible dosage for me is about 30mg. With our current dosage and pricing mechanism, I need to pay $30 for a single dosage. That same $30 (or usually less) will net me two full grams of premium flower - which is something on the order of 6-10 dosages for me. One thing that really helps is when awesome stores have specials!
I found out that it was Munchies Monday at A Bud & Leaf. Save $5 when you spend $25! Aw yeah. The link at the top of this post leads to the rest of their daily specials. I'm coming back for Thirsty Thursday. They had quite the variety of product to choose from, from Zoots candies to cookies and some of my favorite Silica Phoenix chocolates - they're like a gourmet giant Kit Kat bar.
Then I noticed something at the top I'd never seen before, what is this... Slips? A breath strip? I'd never even heard of breath strips! Very unique, very boutique. I'll be reviewing Slips in an upcoming Podcast. You can see "High Tea" as well - an honey stick designed to infuse a beverage, sweet!
Right past the edibles, they have the main star of any marijuana shop - the flower! The displays were arranged with Indicas next to the edibles, and to the right are Sativas. There were more $10 special grams here than at any store I have visited to date - a total of three options, and a limit of one $10 gram per customer, which I think is entirely fair.
They carry some of my favorite marijuana by Dama and Honu. Two of the $10 special strains were by Doc Croc, another favorite #WAPot. There was a variety of grams, and just a small selection of quantity packages available as well. Pre-rolls were not the highlight - the premium grams are where it's at.
Pricing on the marijuana here was pretty reasonable. Several $10 value strains, generally $15 grams. There were a few $18 and $20 grams, all of which seemed reasonable and worth it. Personally, I prefer not to pay more than $15 per gram - I do it when it's worth the premium. Many of these brands and strains are worth it.
While shopping, I saw the store's mission statement. It strikes me as a clear and admirable goal for every single day's work. This lines up incredibly with my own mission and belief system.
The budtenders here are absolutely committed to this Mission, and it shows in every interaction I was part of or watched while I was visiting the store. There were 3 total budtenders, but one of them, Joe, was absolutely new. While he's the first employee who greeted me, I'm not spotlighting him because he's the FNG.
The more gregarious of the two budtenders was Avery. He had so much energy and an outgoing laugh. You can tell this guy likes to party and enjoy life and have a good time. Avery definitely built the mood. It's no surprise he prefers Sativas.
He talked about slamming two Legal Sparkling Tonics back to back! I think we need him as a guest on the podcast some time and get down. Based on what I told him, Avery could not have done a better job selecting an outstanding strain for me - Lemon Sour Diesel by Doc Croc - one of the budget choices and exactly the strain I'd have chosen for me with the info I provided. Well done.
Daniel was the other budtender, a tall guy with a short beard, a soothing voice, and a very calm demeanor. He told me a bit about his medical marijuana background. His recommendations for me were spot on as well, and he did a great job describing the effects and duration of a variety of non-flower marijuana, like the transdermal patch and the CBD capsules.
Overall, A Bud & Leaf is a small store. It's a little strange that it's inside of a house, but once you're in the doors there is nothing 'house' about it - even when you get a peek back into the kitchen where the Nag Champa burns over the sink. This is an upscale premium marijuana retailer with great staff and an excellent atmosphere. Quality and value are keywords here.