No insult to The Station, but the main reason I chose to review this spot was because I was in the area and had to pee.
Not a good reason.
I remembered the shop well, though. Even after four years, I know that its executive-style bathrooms would be open — and there would be some top-notch herb waiting on the other side of the lavatory door.
3005 28th Street, Boulder
Hours: 9:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. Monday through Saturday, noon to 5 p.m. Sunday.
Raw marijuana price range: $12/gram $35/eighth-ounce, $220/ounce. Members receive 20 percent off purchase.
Raw marijuana price range (recreational): $12-$17/gram $35-$50/eighth-ounce, $400/ounce.
Other types of medicine: BHO, shatter, icewater hash, edibles, tinctures
Online menu? Yes.
Recreational sales? Yes.
Parking was easy; there’s plenty of it outside the slate-and-stucco-covered building. The place still looks brand-new and stands out on the corner of Valmont and 28th streets – though it stands out less and less every year as Boulder continues tearing down the old and building up (and up!) the new.
I checked in up front and, after getting my card and ID put in the system, walked briskly to the loo, past an embarrassingly large framed version of my 2011 review. To save you all the obvious details, my experience there was glorious. Compared to (cough, cough) other offices where I’ve gone, this was a palace of clean tile, glistening porcelain and aerosol flowery freshness. And why is this important? It’s not, really. But (follow me here) in a way, it makes sense: The Station is on point with everything, even down to the lowliest place in any public space — the men’s bathroom stall.
Business done, it was time to do business. The bud room was empty and nobody was ahead of me, so I didn’t have to sit in the waiting room – though not much there has changed, either. The dark wood used on everything from the benches along the wall to the doors and desks still looks fresh and new.
The medical bud bar has changed, though. It looks like the store moved it into a former office right past the receptionist’s desk, while the larger bud bar down the hall has been switched over to make room for recreational customers. Although I didn't check out that end, I did see that rec pricing ranges from $35 to $50 for an eighth of an ounce and $220 to $400 for an ounce.
The new medical bud bar may be in a smaller space, but the shop did a great job outfitting it like the rest of the store, with dark wooden cabinetry and display cases. It feels like a jewelry store minus the jewelry and plus some top-notch cannabis products. The small size means private service, too, with only enough room for one patient to be served at a time; previously, it was a free-for-all in the bud bar. Bud is kept in glass jars on the wall behind the budtender. A counter filled with edibles and most of the shop’s concentrates separated me from TJ, my budtender.
The hash selection was solid, with hash from Mahatma and strain-specific $60 grams from GreenDot Labs – our 2015 Best of Denver winner for Best Cannabis Concentrate Company. But what really enticed me was the in-house bubble hash on the bottom of the counter. The small jars of icewater-extracted hash — strain-specific and separated by micron size — contained some of the best hash I’ve seen in months. The best of the bunch was the 73-micron offering of The White. The chunks looked like light milk chocolate and broke up like chunks of fine, wet beach sand. The smell was a mix of white chocolate, wet soil and pine-scented floor cleaner – all of which came out distinctly (and in that order) when smoked out of a clean pipe on top of a clean screen. It provided a mega-blast of flavor and potency to a bowl that sent me to borderline-uncomfortable levels of highness after I smoked a quarter-gram or so in one session. After the floating, pain-killing buzz comes the crash, and a nap was all I could manage to accomplish two hours after my last bowl.
Bud selection was solid, with about two dozen strains spread out across the spectrum, from heavy indicas to speedy sativas. The Super Lemon Haze gave my nose a tickle with a spicy, lemon-candy bite with a quality that set the tone for most of the rest of the buds. The Headband didn’t really do it for me smell-wise, as it missed the tart, rubbery mark — but the herb was still plump and ripe with trichomes. Everything else was tops. I only had to briefly sniff at the Pinesol-stinking Black Domina, the butter haze of the Abusive Train Haze and the Flo-like Harlequin OG to know I was in the right place. A light, grapey Big Bubba Diesel was also worth considering. I ended up taking home a variety pack of bud, starting with the fuel-smelling OG Sin. The chunky buds had the fullness of a ripe Sour Diesel, but with a much more earth-toned, green-and-orange look to the calyxes and pistils. Trichome coverage was great, and the potency of the nuggets I brought home was perfect for small, personal bowls to do the job right. I used the buds mostly for pain management this week, putting a brief end to back and knee pain that seems to be growing in proportion to the increasing size of my kids. Like the shop itself and the quality of the herb, the pricing was outstanding: $35 an eighth, with 20 percent off for being a first-timer (it was technically my second time, but I wasn’t going to correct them).
I also took home some of the shop’s in-house unique genetics with the Tea Tree, a phenotype of a Tangerine Amnezia X Ghost OG x Ghost OG cross. It had a strawberry sweetness at first, but when broken up it had a much more pronounced turpentine body. A speedy hybrid, the buds gave me instant appetite, and I was making and shoving a turkey sandwich down my gullet before the smoke had cleared my nostrils. The flavor puttered out after the green hit, but the bud burned down to a fine white ash and left a mild perfume smoke behind in the room. Again, at non-member pricing of $35 an eighth and $220 an ounce, you can’t go wrong. If you’re local, you might want to make the shop your primary center: You’ll save 20 percent, and it’s worth it. Finally, I brought home the ChemDawg, with a light, mixed-flavor gummy-bear sugariness to the compact, tight little forest-green buds. It’s the type of ChemDawg that gets you stoned just sniffing it. Not lanky but still airy, the trichome-coated calxyes all burned down to a clean ash, and the flavor was intensely fuel-like, with a lemon blast at the end. Speedy and racy, a bowl was like a cup of coffee in the morning and seemed to turn on my appetite engine, break the shift knob off and leave it in high gear all day long. Like everything else on the medical menu, it was $35/$220 and worth every penny.
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It wasn’t just my relieved bladder that had me smiling when I left. I walked out with about four grams of herb and a half-gram of hash, all for around $36 — and what I brought home was the best bud-for-value I’ve found in ages.