Last week on just their 2nd day operating, Stash Queens went to visit the first Black-owned-justice impacted dispensary to open in New York City called Smacked Village located downtown on Bleecker Street. First, we want to congratulate Roland Conner and his team for a successful launch that we know took a lot of hard work, preparation and hustle to make happen. We absolutely had to support Smacked during their opening week and it gave us an opportunity to see what the vibe was like at their establishment. They certainly did a great job with their location which sits within the NYU geographical envelope (get that college kid aka their parents’ schmoney😎) and is a short walk from multiple train lines.
There was a lot of excitement and pride from everyone in the building with folks hugging and dapping each other and it felt similar to a family reunion or being welcomed into a family. This was an important reminder about why it is vital to have Black owned cannabis spaces since it creates a sense of place for Black people, that there is opportunity for community building and sustaining that we know will make Smacked Village successful.
As soon as you walk in, the friendly front door staff checks your id and then you are queued up in line where a helpful staff member equipped with an iPad asked if we knew what we were looking for and helped to connect us with a budtender. It is really exciting to know that as more dispensaries open their doors that there will be a myriad of ways that they engage customers from the store layout, the art on the walls to the educational information that they share about the brands they carry. It is incumbent on cannabis brands and cultivators to really equip dispensaries and budtenders with the key information about their products to help customers differentiate between products and to help them customize their buys.
Smacked Village’s website is a great asset as it lists what they have in stock and you can place your order online for pickup which is a great timesaver. There is a customer segment that really wants to spend their money with a Black business so it felt great to contribute to supporting a dispensary where the overwhelming majority of the staff were Black and Brown folks. Just want to mention that for all of the prep and nerves of an opening week of business, the Smacked Village team were knowledgable, in control and just cool as hell.
Now on to what we purchased! We were on the hunt for flower on this particular day and in true Queen style we asked for the BEST flower on their menu! The budtender directed us to two brands.
Both of them were pricey with the Kush coming in at $73.00 for an eighth (definitely a splurge) and the Wedding Cake going for $68.00 an eighth. There has been a lot of online chatter about the quality or lack therof of NYS bud and stoners never have a problem telling you about why they liked a strain or hated it. So far, we have been smoking the Kush which was a bit dry (we rehydrated it with a little lemon peel) and not trimmed well but it was a lovely smoke with a smooth aftertaste. It achieved our aim for a more deeply relaxing body high and it did what it came to do. We will circle back with our review of Lobo’s Wedding Cake after we finish the Kush.
Some tips before your visit:
Do some research on Smacked’s website to see what they have available. They have a mobile app that is also coming online and will have an even quicker way to be notified of specials and deals that they are running.
Bring Cash! Do not forget that buying cannabis even on the legalized market is a cash based business and while there is an ATM machine on the premises, don’t play yourself with paying the extra service fees to take money out.
Prepare for the sticker shock! This is not your plug’s prices not by a long shot and then with the sales tax included it is an investment but its one that is worth it for a variety of reasons including being able to track and research where your cannabis originated, to recognizing the growing practices which means paying farm workers a fair wage to grow the plant.Another real investment is in the testing component of knowing your cannabis is safe to take. So to us, its worth the extra money because we clearly understand what it took to bring the cannabis we purchased to market.
Go visit Smacked Village and tell us about experience!