Over 80 million women in the U.S. have access to legal cannabis, and we share women’s stories about the first time they bought legal weed.
Today’s episode features Alex Ramirez, founder of @yaaaschef, a company that creates cannabis infused treats.
Ellen Scanlon (00:00):
This podcast is Gus’ Cannabis and is intended for audiences 21 and over.
Ellen Scanlon (00:08):
Welcome back to How to Do the Pot, a podcast demystifying cannabis for women. I am Ellen Scanlon. On these short episodes, we share women’s stories about the first time they bought legal weed. Today’s story comes from a chef, and if you’re interested in cooking with cannabis, stay tuned to How to Do the Pot this summer. We have new episodes with advice and tips from some amazing chefs who know all the tricks for cooking with weed. Our guest today is Alex Ramirez, a Los Angeles-based cannabis chef and founder of a food company called Yaaas Chef.
Alex Ramirez (00:43):
So quite a few years ago, when medical shops were just starting to kind of pop up it wasn’t recreational yet. I had gotten my rec at the time because I was having some pain from an injury that I had sustained working as a chef in a kitchen and so I decided that after many, many years of partaking in the black market, I would venture into the legal medical market. I just had kind of a mental block I guess about buying weed in a store just because I held fast to the notion that the black market is where it originated from, it’s where it was built by people of color and that’s where it should stay.
Alex Ramirez (01:42):
So fast forward to this concert was happening up in Oakland, so my partner and I decided to go. We got a room with a couple of friends and I’ve never gone to a shop before so we decided well for the first time that we’re going to buy legal cannabis, why not go to the OG big daddy Harborside Medical Center. I remember being so excited driving all the way up the coast to Oakland and as we dropped in, I started playing like two short and all the hits from the Bay Area. I was really, really excited as we were approaching Harborside.
Alex Ramirez (02:31):
We hadn’t even checked into the room yet. When I saw Harborside there, I was like, “This is it,” because it looks like a huge industrial building or like maybe like those school trailers that you see in the back of the school. There was a security guard in front but I saw quite a few people in line and I was like, “Well obviously this is the spot to go.” We came in first thing in the moment and walk in and it totally was completely different than what I had imagined that it would be because I thought it would be like kind of shady, like a pawn shop maybe and walking in, just like smelling the scent of it and just like the wave of like … Oh wow, this is a pot shop and this is what it looks like and this is how it is and just being overwhelmed by everything.
Alex Ramirez (03:28):
It was kind of like a luxury experience, like you would go to a jewelry store maybe and there was like … Somebody behind the counter with all this glass and everything, it was so novel and new to me and I’ve never experienced anything like it before, having somebody who was basically like a sommelier to kind of walk me through the process of these are the different strains that we have and these are the different effects that they give you and this is how much this has of THC, this is how much CBD this one has and just kind of gathering like a little pupu platter of what we were going to partake in for the weekend.
Alex Ramirez (04:12):
I just remember it being like so new and so cool and just thinking like, “Wow. I am never going to buy weed from the neighbor down the street ever again,” because it’s just … How could the black market ever compete with that? It’s having all these different options and having somebody who actually knows what’s up rather than asking the guy, like, “Hey, what kind of weed is this?” And he’s like, “I don’t know. It’s going to get you high,” that kind of thing. So I just really remember being impressed by the whole situation, being really into it as far as like … What the possibilities could bring about in the future as far as legal cannabis goes. Because I remember being a kid and buying a sack from whoever at school or whatever and I never in a million years thought that I would be able to walk into a store and actually purchase weed and it still makes me flabbergasted to this day.
Ellen Scanlon (05:37):
Thanks for listening to this episode of How to Do the Pot. If you’d like to share your story about the first time you bought legal weed, please send us a voice memo to firstname.lastname@example.org or DM us @dothepot. Please also follow along on all our socials and visit dothepot.com for lots more information about women and cannabis. Thanks to April Pride, Madi Fair, our brand manager and our producer Nick Patri. I am Ellen Scanlon and we’ll be back soon with more of How to Do the Pot.
So you must be legal, too. Age 21+ invited to continue.