Location: Shoreline, WA
Visited: 10/31/2015 2:50 PM
Lowest-cost: $10/gram flower, $7 edibles, regular specials
Budtenders: Crista - medical background, detail oriented, upbeat
Brianna - knowledgeable, compassionate, energetic
Overall: Return and Recommend!
Highlights: Impassioned staff. Well-stocked cooler. Variety of deals. Daily specials. Personal attention.
365 Recreational Cannabis is in a big, older building on a relatively busy street. There is an unrelated medical marijuana facility in the same building. Pulling into the street parking out front, there's a short walk to the front door. There was also a small lot to to either side of the building. Right at the sidewalk is a little sandwich board directing you to the weed.
Opening the door, first and foremost, ADA access is essentially non-existent. Look at all those stairs! I've got no mobility or leg-related issues and that was a pain to climb. I'm pretty certain no two of those stairs are exactly the same height. I'd imagine an older customer or someone with mobility issues simply turning away. It is what it is, and otherwise this is a well located retail spot. Also, to the right upon entering there was a bunch of carelessly tossed mail, flyers, adverts, and other random, unsightly clutter.
At the top of the stairs is a landing and a couple doors to choose from - 365 Recreational is to the right - door 365. There was a definite 'old building' smell but it was not an offensive smell, the bathroom was very clean and the air freshener was really interesting smelling. Overall, the area is well kept up here.
As you enter the retail premises, the door enters into a lounge. There's a great couch and very large TV, as well as an ATM. Under the TV is a huge amount of information including some Seattle local papers, tons of info from marijuana brands, and so much other information.
This area is used as a place to check IDs and helps to keep minors even further isolated from the marijuana. This is a great method - one often utilized in medical marijuana facilities.
It also helps the staff control how many customers are in the store at once - this is somewhat self regulating as there can only be as many people as there are to both check ID and process a marijuana transaction. I felt this simple mechanism made a huge impact on the personal service delivered - well thought out and executed. It clearly leads to personal attention from staff when shopping.
Entering the retail premises, it does not feel like a particularly large space but it does feel full of product. Blonde wood and glass counters line all four sides of the retail space - it's really well coordinated, and professionally lit inside of the counters. I really like the way product is on display.
At first glance, there appears to be an abundance and variety. All the displays appear carefully laid out, and there's a studied care to the volume of posters displays and signs around.
Straight ahead as you step into the retail space, there's Indica and Hybrid labeled displays. Up on the wall is a pretty standard variety of edibles and tinctures. There are no real surprises in the edibles - all top of the line legal marijuana - or the pricing.
There are a ton of great brands represented and some exceptional strains. Pricing is straight forward, with each and every product individually labeled and priced. For each strain from each brand, all available sizes are listed. This is a great way to display your product and ensure that customers know what is in stock.
Turning to the right is the amazing sativa display. Some fantastic marijuana is in this cabinet.
Right next to the Sativa is the most stocked in-store cooler I have encountered in a retail marijuana store to date. It's also the first time I've seen chocolates being refrigerated and it's a great idea. Who doesn't love cold 420 and Spot bars?
Also of mention here is the wide variety of delicious drinkable marijuana options like Cannabis Quenchers. Prices here are commensurate with all competition. It seems that edible legal marijuana is one of the most stably priced products on the market.
Directly opposite from the awesome cooler, and underneath a wall full of marijuana posters, stickers, bumper stickers and brand flyers is where they keep the concentrates and topicals. There are a wide variety of concentrates in a few different forms available. Pricing is actually pretty decent here, with full grams as low as $25.
They also had some more premium content, especially the awesome line of Cinc-o-Dos and Whole Cannabis brand concentrates. Skunk on the left has a 52% CBD content, which is just remarkable.
Near the door, there was a big display full of a huge variety of pre-rolled options. I didn't get a good shot of this display but there was a variety from some real bottom of the barrel options to premium high end pre-rolls of some of the best pot from the best brands. There was also a relatively small, but diversely stocked, shelf full of marijuana enjoyment implements. I saw small metal and glass chillums, bowls, and a couple of vaping devices.
During my shopping, I was guided by two budtenders. Both of these young women are articulate about marijuana. They used extensively descriptive language. Throughout almost a full hour-long visit during which many other customers came through, they were able to describe effects, flavors, and other aspects of the marijuana in a manner that made sense and was accurate (based on my own knowledge). Overall impressively professional.
I was initially greeted, ID'd, and helped by Crista, who has a significant medical marijuana background. She's also the manager of the store. Having spent time growing her own medicine and providing for others, she takes an effect-first type of consultation method with customers.
We discussed in depth one very real difficulty present for budtenders with a medical background. You cannot describe effects in relation to symptoms - at least until the WSLCB creates new rules regarding medical marijuana and further ties retail and medical together. So for a budtender like Crista, who knows a strain is good for headaches, or body pain, or treats lethargy, or helps stimulate appetite, or puts you right to sleep, or relaxes your muscles but lets you stay up, simply cannot say "this strain will treat this condition".
They must describe it much the way I do - as effects and duration - isolated from customer's stated symptoms. This adds complexity and needless difficulty that sometimes customers aren't even aware exists, and limits a budtender's ability to help deliver needful effects to customers. Crista definitely plans on becoming medically certified whenever the WSLCB creates a process for it.
Crista likes all sorts of marijuana, and was really feeling the 7-Way by Northwest Cannabis Solutions and the hibiscus-ginger Cannabis Quencher.
After staring at posters for far too long, I was also helped by self-professed weed nerd Brianna. Her background is as a marijuana enthusiast for her personal enjoyment - a recreational user with a huge repertoire of strain experiences that she uses to help match customers to a preferred product. Look at her crazy pants - I think they're great and made her open the door of the cabinet to make sure they were in this shot.
Brianna's favorite part of being a budtender is that she gets the opportunity to introduce people to marijuana. Many customers of legal, recreational marijuana stores are not long-time users, some are first-timers, and nearly all could learn more. Brianna loves explaining the difference between genres of marijuana and how to use different enjoyment mechanisms - pipes, bongs, vapes, joints. Her real joy is guiding customers on their first interactions with concentrates.
She's been smoking for a long time, and really likes concentrates. Her favorite is the Noblecrack from Whole Cannabis pictured above. It clocks in at almost 90% cannabinoids, and she said it's a really clean, hard-hitting smoke. She also mentioned enjoying Hawaiian Dream high-CBD strain. She smokes it before going to the gym. As she put it - "No pain, all gain". I agree, that strain turns all pain off.
Overall my trip to 365 Cannabis was excellent, and I have since returned.
While the stairs are tough, the climb is worth the knowledge, atmosphere, and selection of product are absolutely worth it. This was the best experience I had after spending the day visiting 9 marijuana retailers in Seattle, and I look forward to visiting again.