In the city of Toronto today for a walk into the historic district of the Kensington Market.
I’m calling on 2 iconic locations.
The first, is to visit the Canadian Princess of Pot’s recently opened Coffee Shop.
Jodie’s Joint was opened by Jodie Emery a few months ago.
Jodie is married to Marc Emery (Canada’s Prince of Pot. He’s done time in a US federal prison. The Canadian government threw him under the bus in 2009 and let him be extradited to the USA, where he served 5 years for selling mail-order cannabis seed to the States. Both he and Jodie are long-time cannabis activists and they’ve both been arrested, charged and fined heavily for being staunch supporters of the cannabis herb and cannabis law reform.)
In Canada, it is my opinion that we owe Jodie and Marc a debt of gratitude for continually taking one for the pro-cannabis team.
Jodie’s Joint is located at 235 Augusta Ave. Toronto, Ontario Canada.
To get there, we must drive into the heart of an International city.
(I recommend buckling up until I can get us safely parked and strike out on foot.)
On our way, we’ll pass a miniature version of Times Square…lots of huge LED screens and mega advertisements are everywhere.
Then, past Bay Street (Toronto’s financial district).
Once parked and on foot, we have a 20 minute walk into the Kensington Market area.
It’s a really old, very eclectic neighbourhood.
It’s filled with fruit and vegetable shops and vintage clothing stores. It’s always been a bit of a hippie-haven and it draws a very artsy crowd.
A few more blocks and we’ve arrived.
Jodie’s Joint has already been dealing with some neighbourhood backlash, of sorts.
Change is difficult at the best of times.
Jodie’s address has been a beloved coffee, tea and bulk food store called “Casa Coffee ” and it has operated (almost daily) in that locale for the last 55 years.
Yeah, the Princess has made some changes and although you can still buy coffee and tea, gone are any reminants of bulk food buying.
No cannabis can be purchased here yet, nor can you vape cannabis inside…but staff are working towards that ultimate goal as we wait and see what the changing Provincial government cannabis business regulations are going to look like.
(5 more months, they figure.)
Currently you can buy products made from hemp, logoed lighters, grinders, t-shirts and porcelain coffee cups.
Jodie’s staff were exceptionally polite and extremely helpful.
Mimi served us our coffee and Andreas Gregoras (who wasn’t even scheduled to work) but chatted with me anyway were both very enthusiastic and were great ambassadors for Jodie’s venture.
(5 Stars for exceptional customer service.)
This is what the upstairs looks like.
As you can see, it’s not really swanky or over-built.
In my opinion the acquisition of this location was about establishing turf.
Almost directly across the road is the other iconic business that we’re visiting.
This one has been established right across the street from Jodie’s Joint for the last 20 years and is still going strong.
You know what they say, location, location, location.
Let’s have a little look-see at a place you can legally vape and smoke cannabis at, if you’re a member or, you pay a $5 cover.
Located at 204 Augusta Avenue is the Hot Box Puff Lounge.
It’s a headshop in the front, a vape lounge (complete with a pool table and board games in the middle) and an outdoor patio where you can smoke joints all day long, if you want to.
No cannabis is sold on site, you simply bring your own.
You can also bring your own vaping or bong equipment. Or, you can simply rent Hot Box’s gear.
I think it’s a cool concept.
Buying membership in the club or buying a day pass, gives people a “legal” place to socialize with cannabis.
I opted for a relaxed vape session and a coffee.
It’s the first time that I’ve ever medicated in a commercial store. Thanks for joining me.