Medical marijuana dispensary review: Nature's Cure III in Denver

I would love to say there was another reason for my visiting Nature's Cure III on Colfax, but there just isn't. The shop isn't really known for much more than rock-bottom pricing on their buds, and there's often a line to get in -- so I figured I'd finally make a stop and see just how far $25 could get me.

Nature's Cure III

1500 E. Colfax Ave. Denver, CO 80218 720-328-6256

Hours: 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. daily. Raw marijuana price range: $24-$35/eighth, $200-$270.ounce, though they also offer $150-$160/ounce specials (shake and 'blunt mix' sell for about half those prices). Other types of medicine: BHO, hash, edibles, tinctures, salves, shake. Online menu? No. Handicap-accessible? Yes.

Nature's Cure III is on Humboldt and East Colfax. And not the new Colfax with fancy brew pubs and shiny condos. This is still Colfax Colfax. A spot where you can see a dude rapping to himself at the bus stop, a hooker walking in heels stumbling past the furniture rental place, and a drunk pissing himself while half-passed out after bumming for change and downing a bottle of cheap gin from Scooter Liquors.

Garden shot from Nature's Cure III.
Garden shot from Nature's Cure III.

Inside, the front room has been sectioned off as a patient waiting room with not much more than a few hand-me-down office chairs and a stickered-up ATM that looks like it spent time in a skate shop prior to its stint distributing cash to medical patients. The shop is cash only, which is becoming much more frequent around town, as one by one, credit-card companies catch on to what "health services" their clients really offer. Paperwork is minimal -- just a small intake form while your ID and red card are Xeroxed.

On the day of my visit, there were a few pipes and bubblers on display in the small next-in-line waiting room just beyond the locked doors. Nothing fancy, and most were a few dollars overpriced for what they really were: a pipe for someone who needs to puff his meds as soon as possible once he gets out the door.

The back bud bar is built into a corner of the small store, with two adjacent doors opening into the same L-shaped space. Meds were scattered everywhere, with edibles on shelves on the back wall, in the glass cases, in the fridge on the other side of the room and on small counter displays by the cash register. White boards along the back wall of the bud bar have pricing for everything, the list seems somewhat jumbled; I found it easier just to point to something and ask what it cost. Edibles-wife, the stop mainly offered hard candies and chocolates from companies like Dabba. There were also topical ointments, lip balms and tinctures -- items that other dispensaries have let go in favor of more waxes and hashes.

Nature's Cure III had those as well, though not a very robust collection of either. The main wax for sale was a doughy, yellow mixed blend selling for $30 a gram. More appealing were discs of hash made from pressed kief. Selling for $15 a gram, the miniature hockey pucks had a deliciously inviting floral smell and the yellow-amber color of Gulf Coast beach sand. The huge chunk was just begging to be thrown on top of an old-school hooka and burned with shisha -- but I opted to save a few bucks this week and just go with the cannabis.

Page down for the rest of the review and pics of the meds.   My budtender was a middle-aged guy with a mustache and the same friendly, positive outlook as Bruce from Family Guy. He had a personal aside for almost every one of the strains I went through, pointing out whether the sativas were too speedy or the indicas were too day-ending. Another budtender -- a younger woman with a punk-rock thing going -- helped out at the counter, too, throwing in her two cents now and then. It was a nice change from the flat-brim bro-dude budtender who just nods at strains and describes herb with a floating scale of "fire" (fire, super fire, bomb fire, forest fire). Instead, the Flo was "lovely" and the Super Ogre was "very fun," while strains like the Super Lemon Haze smelled "delightful".

Super Ogre from Nature's Cure III.
Super Ogre from Nature's Cure III.

The shop had more than a dozen strains on deck when I stopped by, most all falling in their super-low $25/eighth price range. Also available were four or five "top shelf" strains on display as well, all selling for $35 an eighth. Nature's Cure III grows all of their herb in a hydro setup, which for the most part results in a lot of herb for them -- but not really much top-tier quality. Of course, for the super-discount pricing being offered (eighths sell for $25 and ounces for as low as $150), there's really not much I can complain about here. You get what you'd expect to get: fluffy buds without much character to them. Sure, a few strains, like the top shelf OG Kush and Purple Urkle, had some stank to them and probably wouldn't have been bad to take home -- even at their $35/eight price

The stock jar was filled entirely with popcorn nugs like the ones above, sporting dirt-brown hairs and a dusting of thin trichomes that hid underneath the sugar leaves left behind. It had a spicy, Chinese-food scent working out of the jar in the shop that dulled in the bag overnight. Smoked, the bud popped and cracked like a wet campfire log and burned to a similarly charcoaled ash that gave off only the faintest hint of piney OG flavoring in the very first hit of the tippy-top of the bud from a crystal clear pipe. Stoney as hell, though, which kind of made up for everything else. I threw out my back snowboarding a few weeks ago and the lingering pain has made me take notice of strains like this. It's not quite as effective as hot needling or a stone massage would be, but it's noticeable relief nonetheless. I'd just like to see this grown out to a more enjoyable fullness and flavor, especially when it's offered as a top-shelf strain.

Kali Dream from Nature's Cure III
Kali Dream from Nature's Cure III

But others, like the wispy Strawberry Cough, premature Northern Lights and generic MTF were exactly what you'd expect $25/eighth Colfax meds to be. The Kali Dream, for example, had a piney, almost minty aroma to it out of the jar in the shop, with the bright orange pistils curling around the slim, tiny calyxes. Trichome coating on the buds was decent, with a lot of clear and silver crystals in the folds of the bud itself. Broken up, the buds smelled artificially fresh, like a Tide dryer sheet, though they burned with a dull, hashy taste. The instant, middle-of-the-forehead Sativa buzz was unexpectedly strong for the first 45 minutes but tapered off quickly, leaving me with a case of cottonmouth and a paltry appetite.

As I figured from the get-go, the shop didn't carry anything mind-blowing; it pretty much relies on low prices to get people in the door. And hey, if you're the type of person who cares more about saving $5 or $10 on an eighth than how well a strain was grown, the relatively clean buds are probably right up your alley. That, and the staff was beyond-friendly and I can see how it's a nice shop to come back to again and again -- like a stoney version of Cheers.

Read more reviews from Westword's medical marijuana dispensary critic, William Breathes, in our Mile Highs and Lows blog, and keep up with all your Colorado marijuana news over at The Latest Word.

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Colfax Pot Shop

1500 E. Colfax Ave.
Denver, CO 80218


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