The Nation’s First-Ever Cannabis Restaurant Makes History in Hollywood
Food and cannabis consumption have long gone hand-in-hand. But the days of stoners moseying on down to the local convenience store to satiate their munchies may be on the way out. Yes, America’s first-ever cannabis restaurant has arrived.
It’s in Hollywood, and yes, it’s 100 percent legal.
Originally called The Lowell Cafe, the Original Cannabis Cafe underwent a swift name change shortly after it opened in fall 2019. At a glance, its rustic wooden tables and lovely tree-lined patio setting appear don’t appear to be anything out of the ordinary. Even the food courses are pretty normal, albeit high-class, with their vegan offerings. But that’s only because the farm-fresh cuisine is meant to pair with cannabis (it does not directly contain it). And yes, when it comes to Cannabis Grow Guide, there’s plenty.
So, how exactly does it work? As with all legal places that sell / serve cannabis, the Original Cannabis Cafe is only open to those who are 21 and up. All cannabis consumption must be done on premise, which shouldn’t be an issue for most customers because that’s the entire point — a social alternative to visiting a dispensary. Interestingly, customers can bring in their own cannabis. But with this comes a $30 fee (and the stuff on the menu is meant to pair with the food anyway).
Customers / diners make their food and cannabis selections from the menu, which can be considered gourmet on both sides. And it’s the menu where the business truly shines. Chef Andrea Drummer got her start with cannabis-infused food, though now she focuses on pairings. On the food side diners will find fresh ingredients in vegan options, munchie-inspired appetizers, burgers, sandwiches, sweets and more. On the cannabis side, just as much thought was put into the various pre-rolled options, season fresh flour, concentrates, edibles and more.
For many, the launch of the cannabis restaurant industry seems inevitable. After all, it seems that every year more states take the plunge and legalize recreational cannabis use. Meanwhile, states like California, Colorado and Washington have already been reaping the benefits of legalization for years. Alongside increased tax revenues, these states have experienced economic booms from job growth, investment opportunities, and decreases in certain kinds of criminal activity. Each of these states have also seen increased competition in the cannabis industry, resulting in new and innovative angles on the market.
So, enter the Cannabis Cafe. While the concept of a place where customers can consume cannabis on-premise is not exactly new in California, the relative handful of establishments that offer this do not offer much in the way of food (in most cases, customers are lucky if there are pre-packed snacks for sale). A full-service restaurant committed to delivering high-quality seasonal food selections alongside rotating cannabis offerings stands as a pivotal moment of change.
The Original Cannabis Cafe has been open for less than a year, and it’s already gained a lot of buzz as one of the hottest new hangouts in Los Angeles. As its success continues, it seems more and more likely that other cannabis restaurant businesses will rise up and follow suit. In fact, more may already on the way in California. The Original Cannabis Cafe was the first of 300 applicants to be granted their special consumption license in the area, but only time will tell whether others will put the same kind of focus into their cuisine as they do their cannabis products.