Medical marijuana dispensary review: Healing House in Denver
Urban Cannabis used to have a cut of Cherry Cola that 100 percent lived up to its name. It was a great example, and for some reason it crossed my mind a few months back to pick up an eighth of it. But Urban Cannabis is no more, apparently. I realized that as I pulled up and saw the Healing House name on the front. I didn't immediately make the connection to the shop I reviewed in Lakewood last year; I was too distracted by the wonderfully greasy odors of Crown Burger Plus next door. But I didn't want to waste the gas to go somewhere else -- so I stopped in to see how Healing House is doing in its second location.
2383 South Downing Street Denver, CO 80210 720-379-3816 HealingHouseOnline.com
Hours: 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. daily. Raw marijuana price range: $10/gram $30/eighth-ounce, $200/ounce. Members receive 10 percent off purchase. Other types of medicine: BHO, CO2 oil, kief, hash, edibles, tinctures, lotions, drinks. Online menu? Yes. Handicap-accessible? Yes. Recreational sales? Yes.
If you've visited the Healing House in Lakewood, don't expect the same "quirky antique store" vibe that I found last year. There aren't murals of stoner trains rounding the mountain painted on the walls, and the rows and rows and rows (and rows) of edibles are nowhere in sight. Instead, the crew took over the former home of Urban Cannabis and has done a great job reimagining the space, turning it into a sleek, modern, surprisingly green-free environment. Before, the shop was sectioned off into rooms. Now it's just one large space. A birch-and-glass counter runs the entire length of the shop, with medical on one side and recreational on the other.
The new branch must have seen a rush of rec customers judging by the change in layout that happened in the last few weeks. When I first visited, the medical space was situated in the spot just past the door and took up a good third of the counter space. Now medical patients are at the back of the shop. Both times I've stopped by, at least one or two recreational customers were in line. Can't say the same for medical patients.
Healing House facebook.
The bud is the same on both sides according to one of the budtenders milling around behind the counter. The only difference is the pricing. Instead of the $40 cap on an eighth of buds (most are in the $35 range) for medical, there's a $55 cap on the recreational side -- and I overheard a budtender tell a rec customer that there are daily sale $35 eighths as well. That's all before taxes, which come to about 21 percent on the rec side.
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Recreational also has the same wax. More of it, actually -- a wider selection, from I could see. On the medical side, the orange, oily brown-sugar Chemdawg wax was the only offering, at $30 a gram. The shop had stacks of different strains on the recreational side, but you'll pay more: $35 to $40 a gram, plus about 21 percent in overall taxes.
The Chemdawg wax just wasn't appealing enough for me to bring home. It was too oily, and I could hear it sizzling on my nail and gooping up a vape pen just looking at it.
Continue for the rest of the review and photos. There were about two dozen strains on display the day I was in, with waxes and pre-filled pens hung up on the display rack behind the budtenders. The edibles selection is considerably smaller, as well, with a few Dixie treats, Cheeba Chews, coffees and teas on display. Healing House also had trans-dermal THC, CBD and THCA patches that one budtender swore by. I've heard of bad skin reactions to those things from a few people, and I've always thought they were strange myself, but they go for about $10 a patch for those of you who are interested.
Brazilian Amazonian from Healing House.
I was in for some flowers, though. My budtender -- a guy so young it made my 34-year-old self feel old -- was nice and eager and seemed new. But other staffers helped him through the transaction and were friendly, too, stepping in when I asked questions about vape-pen refills and concentrates.
The bud spoke for itself, though. Sativa on the left, indica on the right. A dozen or so strains on each side. We started on the sativa end with Golden Goat and Cindy 99. The former lacked the plump, round orange glow of Goat but had a great smell, and the Cindy was down to the last quarter-inch of shaky, keifed budlets left in the quart-sized square jar. It also had a potent, spot-on Cindy smell, but I couldn't get past smoking buds at the full, $35/eighth price that should have been turned to hash. Same goes for the Scott's OG, which looked like tiny green fish-tank gravel.
The rest of the herb varied in quality. Standouts included the little buds of Jillybean that smelled like orange jellybeans, nice full buds of Jedi Kush and a stinky jar of Critical Kush. A few other strains were like that, including the Bio Diesel, though the wispy buds I brought were more due to poor trimming. In addition to the small, stinky green budlets, I also had a number of stems with absolutely no usable cannabis on them whatsoever. In the jar in the shop, there were some larger flowers that boasted a great, ripe fresh lemon-fuel smell. Still, what I brought home wasn't bad at all. The flavor was solid, and I went from nauseated cramping at about 10 a.m. this morning to tunnel vision and a laser focus on eating breakfast by 10:20. Munchies are the best. But considering the shop has different pricing tiers for the buds, it might be more reasonable to put the shake below the $35 mark. It would be worth going back for, at least.
Bio Diesel from Healing House.
As for the Brazilian Amazonian, the smell wasn't that strong. The most prominent scent was the odor of just-turned fall leaves, with a hint of something else; it recalled a bowl of fruit punch left out in the sun all afternoon. But it was strong, with a surprisingly lofty head high that came with the muscle and tension relaxation that dropped from my head down my spine to my lower back over 45 minutes or so after lighting up a bowl in a fresh pipe. The flavor wasn't as impressively deep as the smell, though, and it burned with a regular hashy flavor in a pipe and a bubbler.
Overall, nothing matched the quality I found last May at Healing House's main location. At the time, the shelves there were stocked with massive, plump buds reeking of rubbery terpenes. I couldn't make it through half of the selection last time without feeling overwhelmed by the quality. Hopefully, the new Healing House site can turn that around. I'll be back in the area again soon for another Crown Burger and wouldn't mind picking up some delicious herb at the same time.
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