Medical marijuana dispensary review: Element Four20 in Denver
Of all the dispensaries on Federal, Element420 is arguably the most obvious. If you've driven the strip between Alameda and 6th Avenue any time over the last couple of years, you've seen the large lime-green building, which sits higher than the nearby strip center and almost juts over Federal like a beach house without a beach. There are huge Evolab hash oil banners hung from the bottom of the porch and a handful of green crosses plastered in various spots around the place, in case you missed the point.
Element Four20I've consciously avoided the shop for this long mostly because I find going to shops so blatantly telling the world that they sell marijuana by way of an abundance of green paint and dozens of signs tend to disappoint. But like an annoying pop song on the radio that grows on you, I eventually had to stop in.
82 South Federal Boulevard
Denver, CO 80219
Hours: 11 a.m. to 6:45 p.m. Monday through Saturday, 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday.
Raw marijuana price range (non-members): $12/gram $30-$40/eighth-ounce, $190/ounce.
Other types of medicine: CO2 oil, edibles, tinctures.
Online menu? Yes.
There's more of the same tropical, borderline-neon green in the lobby, with a black leather couch-and-chair setup by the receptionist window, where I sat while the twenty-something girl behind the counter took my information. Aside from the eye-burning green, the little waiting room was clean and tidy, with a faint smell of house cleaner and ganja fighting it out in my nose as I sat watching the never-ending traffic zoom past. Someone has a fascination with extraterrestrials, because there are pictures of big-eyed, gray aliens scattered here and there like in a South Park episode.
Compared to the loud waiting room and exterior appearance, the bud bar was a warm, inviting lounge pleasantly absent of almost anything green. Instead, a few posters (including more alien images) were hung up on the red, blue and gray walls, and the only green was the herb in the dozen or so jars occupying the black, glass-faced display cabinets. The shop's hydroponic-grown ganja is kept in one case, while edibles, pipes and a load of in-house produced concentrates are in another.
My budtender was well versed in what she sold and went into detail about the oils, which apparently are a huge reason people go to the shop. The MMC had a huge selection of strain-specific and blended-strain vials all the same color and consistency -- which seems strange to me considering all other hash and concentrates tend to vary in color depending on the color of the original strain. My budtender didn't go into detail on that, but she did make a point of saying other shops that sell CO2 oil dilute it with glycerol "to make more money off of it."
There were two consistencies: a semi-viscous oil and globs of waxy, cheese-looking budder. But I just couldn't bring myself to spend $35 to $40 for a full gram of CO2 oil when I've never really had that great an experience with it. Every time I've had it, the oil sputters and splatters on a hot titanium nail from too much moisture.
Orange CO2 wax.
Meanwhile, the waxy globs selling for $40 looked unnaturally orange for a cannabis product. I know some people swear by this stuff, and maybe I should have given it a chance -- but it would have been much easier to do if ElementFour20 had half-grams for half the price. Yes, I'm cheap. So is most every other medical marijuana patient out there shopping around for cannabis on Federal.
The shop also stocks a lot of oil toys, including several e-pens and an oil rig with a titanium nail for a reasonable $150. The budtender said the rigs come with a warranty from the glassblower, who's also the inventor/seller of an electric-heated titanium nail called the ElectroDabber. We caught one in use at the High Times Cannabis Cup and it seemed to work pretty well -- as it should given the $400 price tag.
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