It took just 15 minutes for West Hollywood California’s OG Cannabis Café to sell out its nearly 300 Super Bowl game day reservations. The cafe, which offers pre-rolls that can be smoked on site, infused edibles, and a dining menu featuring nachos, tacos, and sliders for customers who get the munchies, is one of a handful of consumption spaces launching in the area. It opened to the public recently and is scheduling special events like the Super Bowl watch party, marijuana meditations, and comedy nights.
Before the pandemic, the city of West Hollywood invited cannabis businesses to set up shop under a set of local rules in the so-called “Emerald Village.” The OG Cannabis Café received a business license and operated for a time, but shut down due to Covid. Quietly relaunching over the past few months, the café is part of a growing ecosystem of local consumption lounges including Artist Tree and PleasureMed’s Irie restaurant.
The OG Cannabis Café is made up of three separate spaces: an outdoor smoker-friendly patio, a room indoors also available to smokers, and a smoke-free patio on the other side of the business that serves wine and beer. Customers 21+ are welcomed to move between the spaces but can not bring cannabis or alcohol from one to the other. Dining choices can be ordered from any of the areas. The varied offerings, and the flow between the spaces, allows a broader customer base to find what they want said DeJanae Evins, experiential marketing and events manager at the cafe.
Pre-rolls, loose flower and gummies from cannabis suppliers Wav, Helena Farms, and Dizzies set the cannabis menu. No high potency extracts or cannabis-infused foods are sold, but customers can bring their own, or other cannabis products they enjoy. Similar to a corkage fee in a restaurant, there is a $25 per table fee for up to three people and a $50 per table fee for larger groups, to bring in cannabis.
The café hopes to stand out by creating programming aimed at local audiences said Evins. A large queer community lives in the area and the staff is planning events aimed at inviting them in. Wellness is important to many Californians she said, so “Marijuana Meditation” nights are on the docket. A slate of comedians are scheduled to perform as well.
Evins said she is also working with hotels to offer tourists and other visitors a place to buy and consume cannabis legally. “You can’t smoke in your hotel room or in the park,” so hotel staff can offer the café as an alternative, she said. Future collaborations with tour guides are being considered as well.