How To Get Weed in DC
If you're looking to buy weed in Washington DC, you've come to the right place. This blog post will discuss the best places to buy weed (or get it as a gift) in 2022, as well as how to obtain it safely and discreetly. The I71 law still allows adults to possess, grow, and gift DC cannabis, so in the absence of licensed recreational businesses, a private market of marijuana gifts bloomed to help you get weed in DC. Allow your friendly, neighborhood Gentleman, DC’s most prominent connoisseur (featured in the Washington Post, the LA Times, and many more) to show you the fundamentals of buying weed in DC.
As you will find, there are many different options available. The type of product and experience you are looking for will determine the best option for you.
Whether you're a resident of DC or just visiting, keep reading for all the info you need on buying weed in the District!
Where To Get Weed in DC
Best I71 Compliant Weed Gifting Stores
DC recreational dispensaries sell all kinds of products in 2022, like art and apparel, then provide marijuana as a free “thank you gift” afterwards. If you’re wondering where to get weed in DC, look no further! The Gentleman has helpfully compiled this list of his favorite I71 compliant DC recreational weed brands for you! These brands have all been vetted for professional service and quality gifts by yours truly, so you can feel confident choosing any of these to buy weed in DC from.
How Cannabis Laws in DC May Be Shifting - 2022 Update!
Before you explore the ins and outs of buying weed in DC, we wanted to update you with a quick public service announcement. All these great storefronts and delivery services that gift cannabis in Washington DC could be going away very soon. After several failed attempts to outright ban them by statute by DC Council Chairman Phil Mendelson and his allies, a Joint Task Force (I think that’s supposed to be a pun) of various regulatory bodies in the city will work together to inspect I-71 stores for compliance along all lines of their purview after Labor Day. They’ll make sure these businesses are properly licensed, don’t present fire hazards, and pay taxes, which sounds fine and fair on the surface. However, the announcement from ABRA (which regulates medical cannabis in DC) seems purposefully vague on the most important question- will these businesses be penalized for gifting cannabis?
It is a foregone conclusion amongst these legacy business owners that the Department of Health will penalize edibles not made in a DC-licensed kitchen, so that product class will disappear, as may concentrates and vape cartridges, which are not specifically legalized by Initiative 71. The second question is what kind of penalties are these bodies capable of levying? It has been noted by the DC Council that ongoing raids by the Metropolitan Police Department typically only derail operations by a few days.
I think the intent here is obvious- these agencies will be tasked to carry out their inspections with an eye towards even the smallest infractions in a bare-faced attempt to end the most equitable cannabis market in the nation. What this means for you, dear reader, is that we expect to see more services move to delivery and meet up models in the near future.
The Basics To Buying Weed in DC
The purchase of medical marijuana was legalized in 2010, and the use of recreational weed was legalized in 2015 through Initiative 71 (I-71). So, you can’t purchase recreational marijuana, but there is a thriving gifting market. More on that later. We’re here to break down: How to Buy Weed in DC - 101.
If there is one tip we can give you this early on, it’s to self-certify. Self-certifying means to certify yourself as a medical marijuana patient without a doctor so that you can access weed dispensaries around the city.
After self-certifying, you can purchase marijuana from licensed medical marijuana dispensaries.
You may be wondering, "What if I don’t want a medical marijuana card?" This is where the weed gifting market comes in! Weed gifting is a practice where weed gift shops sell you an item (i.e., T-shirt, art print, sticker, etc.) and gift you marijuana with the purchase. Gifting weed can be done in different ways. For example, you can buy an entry ticket to an event and the entry ticket includes a weed gift. Or you can purchase a ticket to a raffle and weed could be one of the prizes.
In DC, selling recreational weed isn’t legal, but gifting weed is. You must also:
- Be over the age of 21
- Only use it on private property
- Possess two ounces or less at a time
Keep reading to learn top tips on finding the best weed in DC. You’ll learn about deals, services, favorite strains, and much more!
Tips on Finding the Best Weed in DC
We would never want to steer you in the wrong direction when it comes to buying weed in DC. That’s why we’ve put together a few tips on how to get the best marijuana in the city.
Weed Gifting Shops:
Medical dispensaries might be reliable, but they often don’t have access to the newest and best strains. Your best bet for finding some cool strains would be a weed gifting shop.
Online forum reviews are pretty reliable sources for finding good marijuana. There are several online forums devoted to discussing cannabis, and many of them have sections dedicated to specific cities or regions. This can be a great place to learn which dispensaries carry the best products and which ones to avoid.
You can also ask around. If you know anyone who uses cannabis, whether they live in DC or not, they may be able to give you some good recommendations on where to find the best weed.
Another tip would be to try out different dispensaries. There is no one better to judge good weed other than yourself. Reviews will lead you in the right direction, but everyone has different tastes. Not every dispensary is going to be right for everyone, so it's important to try out a few different ones until you find one that you're comfortable with.
All in all, you should always make sure the dispensaries you go to are licensed by the DOH or compliant with the I-71 provisions, and have a wide variety of cannabis products to choose from.
What is Initiative 71 and Why Does it Matter?
In Washington DC, thanks to Initiative 71, adults 21+ are allowed to:
-Grow up to 6 marijuana plants, only 3 of which may be mature ("flowering") at a time
-Possess up to two ounces in public
-Share up to one ounce with another adult 21+
-Selling of cannabis in DC is not permitted
-And you can't smoke it in public, either; if you're caught it's a $25 fine.
-(You can actually go down to the station and get your weed back if you're caught smoking in public with less than two ounces. Strange days, indeed.)
-This only applies on land that DC owns. Cannabis is still federally illegal and around 30% of the District is federal property, like National Parks & government buildings (map) but also federally-subsidized housing
So just how are people buying legal weed in Washington DC? Let’s take a closer look at how I71 works.
Is Weed Legal in DC Through I71?
So the way many Initiative 71 marijuana-gifting services get around the restriction on sales is to sell something else, like tee-shirts, hats, juices, digital art, lunchboxes, all kinds of stuff, then give you a bag of buds as a free thank you gift. You do not have to be a resident and you don’t need a medical card! This is the only way to get legal recreational weed in DC in 2022 since we still don’t have licensed dispensaries.
Is taking advantage of the gifting loophole legal, though? I’m a Gentleman, not a lawyer, and in my experience, the answer very much depends on who you ask. The best I can personally give you is a very confident ‘sort of.’ I think what you really want to ask is if you can suffer legal consequences as a customer, and that answer is ‘maybe, if there were a perfect shitstorm, but I’ve never heard of that happening to anyone in five years of legalization.” Hope that sets your mind at ease! Any other questions? Here’s the DC Weed Delivery FAQ page.
How to Get Medical Weed in DC
Want to get your hands on lab-tested products? DC's medical marijuana program started accepting patients for any condition whatsoever thanks to emergency legislation enacted in 2015. They started DC Reciprocity in 2018 and now includes patients from both Maryland and Virginia. Learn how to get a medical marijuana card in DC. Your Gentleman, naturally, has some opinions:
DC Weed Storefronts
DC Dispensary Storefronts
DC cannabis stores are the closest you’ll get to a recreational marijuana DC dispensary without a medical card. It’s no surprise they’re so popular- this is what the city thought it was voting for when it legalized marijuana in DC. Brick and mortars typically make a great effort to remain I71 compliant, too. They don’t require an appointment, so you may encounter a line, but you’ll have time to peruse the marijuana gift displays and ask questions. Recreational DC weed stores operate through the “gifting loophole” in Initiative 71 and have become a simple, reliable way to get weed in DC. Here are my faves:
DC Weed Delivery
I71 Delivery Services
DC weed delivery brands bring your gifts anywhere you’d like. In my experience, getting weed in DC this way takes between 1-2 hours, and you can expect an ETA from most delivery services these days. Some services will even let you set a delivery appointment in advance, an awesome feature to save time for the busiest of bees!
Also note, you will not be able to have recreational weed in DC delivered to federal property, like government buildings or the National Mall. Now that’s out of the way, here’s a few of my favorite delivery services:
DC Weed Pick-ups
DC Marijuana Pick-Ups
Some DC marijuana brands offer “Pick-Up” where you meet the brand at a private indoor location, like a hotel room, apartment, or AirBNB. These services typically require an appointment. Curbside Pick-Up is not the same thing, but wouldn’t it be cool if they were wearing a trenchcoat with all kinds of weed hanging from clips on the inside like counterfeit watches in the movies? It would be. I’m gonna suggest it to everybody.
Similar to many recreational dispensaries in Washington DC, pick-ups allow you to ask questions and take your time checking out their selection of Washington DC cannabis gifts.
1-2 hours in advance should be plenty of time to secure an appointment, but setting your appointment earlier is a good idea, especially if you’re tight on time. Here’s a few of my favorites for DC marijuana pick-ups:
Is Recreational Weed Legal in Washington DC?
The short answer is yes, the use of recreational marijuana in Washington DC is legal to possess, consume, and gift! However, stores are not yet able to sell us any recreational cannabis directly. As a result, residents are now getting their DC weed from brands through the gifting system. This is currently how Washington DC recreational weed dispensaries operate within their understanding of the law as we discussed above.
If you catch the distinction I've made, not everyone agrees that cannabis gifting is legal in DC. There are several members of the DC Council that have made it clear they consider this market to be wholly illegal and the DC Metropolitan Police Department has conducted raids on these businesses with some frequency throughout the last six years.
DC Weed Gifting Legality Counterpoints
I'd like to make two points here. The first is that the vast majority of brand owners I've spoken to have consulted a lawyer who told them some version of X + Y + Z equaled a legal business. I've seen all kinds of attempts to be more "I71 compliant" over the years. Separating the cannabis side of your store from the actual purchase section, point exchange systems, and the concept of equivalent value (that is, what you're selling must be within a reasonable range of what that item typically retails for alone) are all concepts that have been pitched by lawyers to their entrepreneurial clients. And even though the Council calls them opportunists today, these brands stick with their established systems. Why?
The answer is my second point- the DC Council is the legislative branch of government. They make laws, but they do not interpret them. That's the job of the judiciary! Six years in and the courts have dismissed nearly every I71 gifting case brought before them and most don't even make it that far. The only people who have actually faced conviction had another factor involved: the sale of other drugs, gun offenses, or traveling over state lines.
Will Initiative 71 Shops Be Closed Down?
Chairman Phil Mendelson of the D.C. council has led two failed efforts in the past year that would have imposed steep financial penalties for the brands that have operated under I71's banner (and their landlords- here's my analysis of the most recent bill's possible consequences).
There is little hope that the most socially equitable cannabis policy in the nation will continue on without government interference much longer, however. The last vote to shut them down failed by a single vote, and most of the Councilmembers that sided with I-71 did so because they didn't think ramming such important legislation through on an emergency basis was the correct course. Emergency legislation would have gone into effect immediately without any input from DC citizens, but now, we should expect two votes and a public hearing. Based on Martin Austermuhle's Twitter feed from the day of the vote, current thought is that the DC Council will vote to shut down the I-71 cannabis gifting late in 2022, but perhaps with some additional medical licenses being made available and held for Washington's unique legacy market entrepreneurs.
If you want to support their efforts to secure amnesty and a transition to the licensed program, please follow Generational Equity Movement and The I-71 Committee on Instagram!
Will DC Ever Get Licensed Recreational Dispensaries?
There are several scenarios that would allow the District to set up the taxed and regulated adult-use cannabis market it wants. Each is implausible in the current political climate, which is why the brands facing extinction are hoping to move to the medical market.
Scenario 1: DC Statehood
The best, most coveted scenario is that DC receives its long-deserved statehood. There are over 700,000 people that live in our nation's Capital that sit outside the halls of its government like war orphans outside the USO, with no representation in the hallowed halls of Congress save for the non-voting (i.e. powerless) seat that is perennially held by Eleanor Holmes Norton.
DC becoming a state is unlikely because the city is a Democratic stronghold, so granting them statehood gives Congressional Democrats 2 additional Senate seats, plus commensurate House seats. You'd have to convince Republicans to willingly shoot themselves in the foot. However, it is a worthy cause to support in the unlikely event Democrats pick up enough seats to pass it themselves- here's a great group in DC for statehood.
Scenario 2: Remove the Harris Rider
The second option is the removal of the budget rider that has plagued Washington DC's green ambitions since its inception. This is the scenario that the DC Council and Mayor were hoping for once Democrats took control of both halls of Congress. Alas, we would soon learn there is simply no political motivation for the Dems to help DC establish cannabis sales. As reported by Martin Austermuhle, reopening negotiations with Republican on this budget rider would reopen other riders for discussion, and there simply isn't enough juice to make it worth the squeeze here.
Scenario 3: Federal Legalization
The last hope to bring licensed adult-use dispensaries to DC, then, lies in federal legalization. The MORE Act just passed the House, but it has become obvious that its social equity provisions will not receive Republican support, so it won't pass the Senate in its current form. As a cannabis blogger since 2016, I can tell you that from my own perspective, federal legalization is tantalizingly close, yet somehow remains as far away as ever.
How to Find Trusted Recreational Dispensaries in DC
When marijuana legalized in DC there were new vendors popping up like, uh...popcorn? Well, you think of something that pops, smarty-pants! Recreational dispensaries in DC should offer safe and timely services with quality cannabis gifts and of course be an Initiative 71 compliant business. This means gifting only to adults 21 years or older and never directly selling cannabis. If you are looking for brands that you can trust when buying weed in DC check out our verified brands above.
Buying Weed in DC
Everything You Need to Know
Still a bit confused on how to buy weed in DC? No worries, the DC marijuana market can be a bit tricky for first timers. DC legal marijuana is easily divided into two categories, medical and recreational. The Gentleman is gonna break down how it all works for you! Let's begin with how to be gifted cannabis from a recreational (I-71) shop correctly.
Ask for Weed in DC the Right Way
Remember that you're not buying cannabis in DC, you're receiving it as a free gift for buying something else. With that in mind, here's the right way to ask for weed in DC so you don't get tripped up! In this example, we'll say that you're buying a tee shirt, but every brand has their own products. Sometimes it's an art print, sometimes it's a sticker, sometimes it's even an inspirational speech. Yes, I'm serious.
- Ask to see their cannabis gift menu. It might be printed out, on a chalkboard, a display screen, or a tablet, but they'll be only too happy to show you what gifts are in stock.
- The actual item, or combination of items, you have to purchase to get the gift you want will probably be listed on the menu. If not, you'll ask "Which tee-shirts comes with an eighth of free OG Kush?"
- Place your order like so: "I'd like the DC Statehood $50 shirt and for my free gift, an eighth of OG Kush."
- Your budtender rings you up, passes you your gifts, and smiles. You have successfully navigated the lingo around buying weed in DC, you sharp bastard. Now, it's time to smoke!
Can Tourists Buy Weed in DC?
Tourists can absolutely buy weed from I71 smoke shops and delivery services while visiting Washington DC! Many of our capital city's 24,000 yearly tourists already take advantage of the legal cannabis laws here and you can, too. The only requirement to buy weed in DC is that you must be 21 or older. If you're in for multiple nights, delivery services are happy to deliver to your hotel and there are storefronts in just about every trendy neighborhood. There are even some 420 friendly AirBNBs around. And, heck, if you have a medical card in your state, DC's medical program offers reciprocity to every other state's program, so you're set if you want to visit a DC medical dispensary while you're in town.
As a tourist, you want to be careful not to smoke cannabis on federal land, which is illegal. This includes the parks, National Mall, and most waterfront areas, as well as federal buildings. I've created a guide to help you around town and avoid any hassle from law enforcement.
We also have to point out that you can't bring weed with you over state lines legally. That means you can't bring your weed home with you, even if you live in a legal state or have a medical card in another state. Especially important for Maryland-based daytrippers, as the Old Line state has not yet legalized cannabis, only decriminalization for possession under 10 grams.
How To Get Weed in DC Legally (2 Ways)
I-71 was passed on February 26, 2015, allowing DC residents aged 21 years or older to:
- Grow up to six marijuana plants within their homes
- Possess two ounces or less of marijuana
- Use marijuana on private property
- Own marijuana-related drug paraphernalia
- Transfer up to one ounce of marijuana to another person who is at least 21 years old, as long as there is no payment made
So, the purchase of recreational marijuana is still not legal in DC. When buying marijuana, always refer to it as a “gift.” You are receiving, not purchasing, weed legally. The gifting market has exploded since the passing of I-71, but you can also go the more secure route of obtaining a DC Medical Marijuana Card. As of 2022, you can self-certify on your application and immediately use your temporary patient registration approval to get weed at licensed dispensaries.
DC Gifting Process (No Medical Card Needed)
If you decide to order from a DC smoke shop or weed delivery business, you want to make sure you don’t use the words “buy” or “purchase” when referencing cannabis. It’s very important to use the right terms when getting weed in DC. This not only protects you as the customer, but it also protects the businesses you’re buying from. Expect to get turned away or ignored if you refer to weed as anything other than a gift. You should also make sure the location you’re purchasing from is I-71 compliant.
DC Recreational Storefronts
When you arrive at a retail location, they will check your ID to make sure you’re at least 21 years old. They might also ask you to provide some registration information. After providing this information, ask to see their I-71 Gift Menu.
Once you have made your selection, you can say, “I would like to buy [Store Item] and take the [cannabis] as my gift.” Shops sell unrelated items at an equivalent price point to the weed you’re being gifted. For example, you might purchase an art print for $50, which comes with your weed gift. By purchasing from a storefront, you can view their products and cannabis gifts in person before committing.
Weed Delivery Services
If you know exactly what gift you want and would rather stay at home, then the delivery service is for you! You can place your order online or by phone. Most delivery services will require you to verify your identity and age digitally. Some delivery services even offer a pick-up option at a curbside location.
Getting a DC Medical Marijuana Card
If you want to avoid the process of being gifted marijuana, you can purchase marijuana the foolproof way with a medical marijuana card. Although it takes some time and patience to get your card initially, it is the best (and only) way to purchase marijuana legally. Medical cannabis patients can purchase up to eight ounces of cannabis within a rolling 30-day period and possess up to two ounces at any time.
Note: The use of medical cannabis is still not permitted in public, even with a medical marijuana card.
Is the Weed in Washington DC Good?
So, you want to know if the weed you’ll find in DC is actually good? Weed quality varies, but I am pleased to report that we regularly find fantastic flowers in the District from I-71 gifting shops, the city’s medical marijuana dispensaries, and District home growers alike. Some of our favorite strains come from I-71 gifting shops & delivery services, which often feature the same designer buds you’ll find from the West Coast, like the ubiquitous Gelato and Zkittlez off-shoots. In 2021 alone, we reviewed Wonderbrett’s Orange Sunset (at Gifted Curators), Cookies’ Gary Payton (at Exotic Organics), a fabulous run of Miracle Alien Cookies (at Natural Vibes), and many more.
The Best DC Weed Strains of 2022 (So Far!)
Our full, expanded list of the best cannabis buys in Washington DC lives on our Buyer's Guide. It's updated weekly with our connoisseurs' picks for sativas, indicas, value, and designer weed you'll want to get before it's gone! Here's a few of the recent highlights from our Buyer's Guide you should certainly snatch should you see them available:
XJ-13 from Giving Tree
Jack Herer is both a staple for longtime smokers and a favorite for newcomers. XJ-13 is an offshoot of the classic that crosses Jack Herer with G-13 Haze, and this example from Giving Tree DC is prime. This indoor flower is fresh and dense in resin development; it’s expertly grown. The scent is a blend of sweet zesty skunk from Jack Herer plus a bit of bitterness and pine on the back end. The flavor is a perfect blend of coniferous tang and peppery zest that truly coats the mouth on inhale. The effect was potent and energizing as expected from the cross, and also quite refreshing on the come-down. Overall, this sample will make sativa lovers very happy. $70/eighth gift
Waffles from Legacy DC (by 4Hunnid)
Backed by rapper YG, 4Hunnid hit the scene hard with their YG OG and Bompton Berries collaborations with Backpack Boyz and continued to make waves with Bompton Cherries, which was featured in Winter Za-Lympix at Green Wolf. It’s speculated that these cultivars share lineage with releases from Grandiflora Genetics, but that hasn’t been substantiated, nor do we know the genetics behind this sample of Waffles from Legacy. We do know the Raw Genetics version is (Apple Fritter x Stuffed French Toast). Despite the mysterious lineage, this version of Waffles is an elite example of the sour candy scent that comes bursting with flavor. The sample burns beautifully in a joint, and isn’t at all throaty. Its powerful potency sets in quickly and feels like a blast of euphoria and relaxation. Whatever the genetics, it’s killer in every way, and Waffles is a must try for lovers of strong smoke and candy-flavors. $90/eighth gift
Blue Bacio from Elevated Lounge
Sunset Sherb and Gelato 41 have been popular crosses among enthusiasts for the better part of the last decade. Sunset Sherb’s deep purple hue, tart flavor, and potency hit the scene like a tsunami before Sherbinski (the original breeder) crossed it to Thin Mint Cookie to kick off his Gelato project. Blue Bacio is (Gelato 41 x Blue Sherb) and out of all the Gelatos and Sherbs we’ve tried, this one is for sure in the higher echelon. The eye appeal, scent, flavor, and potency are dialed to 11. The nug is quite large and bulbous with a manicured trim. It’s almost neon green in hue and quite resinous which makes the nugs sticky and shiny. The cultivar hits you in both the head and body with a sense of urgency followed by a wave of stoney chill. Overall, this is one of the most potent samples we’ve received from Elevated Lounge, and something that we recommend for seasoned smokers and smokers that want to vibe all day. $65/4 gram gift
Candy Jack from Street Lawyer Services
There are few wake’n’bake strains better than the ever-popular Jack Herer. Blend Jack with some righteous Cotton Kandy Kush, and you get something like Candy Jack: a potent, cold-shower type of strain. This sample from Street Lawyer Services strikes just the right key for all sativa lovers on the East Coast, especially those of us who love zesty, sweet skunk scents. This sample has similar eye appeal to some ‘90s OGs with spear-shaped colas and dense calyx layering, plus a classic neon green color. The fresh buds are easier to grind and release a zesty scent that’s loud enough to fill a whole room. It smoked smoothly with a lot of flavor that leans more towards its bitter Kush notes than the candy taste the name might suggest. Overall, this flower had me down for the count. It was energizing, but also heavy. It’s something I could easily recommend that chronic morning tokers pick up at Street Lawyer Services. $75/eighth gift
The freshest cannabis comes straight from the grower and there are plenty that are happy to share- we’ve profiled a few of our favorite local cultivators in this article and ten of our favorite strains from the last year in this one. DC’s medical marijuana program puts out some fire, too- Alternative Solutions’ Panama Red comes immediately to mind.
The Best DC Edibles of 2022 (So Far!)
If you’re interested in edibles, Washington DC is home to many talented cannabis chefs that make all kinds of tasty, infused sweets and savories. You can find a list of some of the more popular edibles, including full-spectrum and distillate-based options. I personally lean more towards full-spectrum edibles these days because I feel it delivers a more enjoyable and organic experience, but if exact dosage is important to you, then you can't beat distillate. Here's some of my favorites of both weed edible varieties that you'll find in DC:
Full-Spectrum Brownies from Athena's Gifts
It’s rare to find weed edibles infused with marijuana flower these days as it’s far easier to ensure accurate dosages with distillate. My personal preference is for flower-infused edibles, as the experience tends to be a lighter, brighter, more “organic” high. Athena’s Gifts honors these ancient ways, so when the Gentleman wants to get thoroughly stoned, this is what I reach for. Athena’s Gifts has a fantastic edibles menu of cookies, cereal bars, and brownies along with a rotating specialty selection, like cheesecakes! All of it is made fresh locally (and also available from Lucky Chuckie). Oh! They also make infused juices and tinctures. As always, if you’re new to weed, start slow and gauge your tolerance. If you’re a daily smoker, you might want to smoke something along with it to get a boost from the edible that leaves you unmistakably higher than your baseline. Trust me, it works great! You are welcome.
Leveled Gummies from Adose Wellness
Adose Wellness is a solid new addition to Washington DC’s weed edibles scene! Their core menu features some unique takes on crisped rice treats, like Churro and Strawberry White Chocolate, along with a wide selection of gummies to satisfy the sophisticated palate of any candy connoisseur. Aside from their perfectly balanced flavor, the texture on these gummies is better than store-bought.. Adose Wellness’ infused treats use marijuana distillate that allows them to categorize the products by potency and cannabinoid profile, and they’ve got a chart that explains it way easier than I can with all these clumsy words. That’s what charts do, mon frere! I ended up taking 60mg THC from half a dozen Level 4 Sour Watermelon gummies, then I supplanted that with a single Raspberry Level 2 (7.5mg of CBD, 2.5mg of THC). And then I fell asleep on the couch at 9pm, watching Matlock reruns, I presume. I tried again with just 30mg, and had a nice, manageable buzz for the next couple of hours.
THC + CBD Gummies from Puff Kings
Puff Kings typically offers impeccably crafted gummies, chocolates, cake pops, rice krispy treats, and brownies. Every so often, they come up with something really unique, like infused buffalo sauce in the summer and infused cornbread kits in the fall. What I like most about Puff Kings’ edible selection is the many options that include a combination of THC and CBD in the same product, which eases the weight of a THC-only edible high, making it a more relaxing and long-lasting experience. It’ll still help you sleep at night, but it won’t knock you out in the middle of the day at responsible dosages. In my experience, this synergy is also better at relieving pain and anxiety. There’s also some research that indicates CBD acts against the side effects of THC, like memory loss. Puff Kings even offered giveaways of their CBD-only edibles throughout the pandemic. Great folks, great products, what’s not to love?
MOTA Distillate Tincture
Don’t let the fancy new packaging with the candy skulls fool you — the MOTA brand of edibles has been around since the early days of I-71, supplying this city with some of the most consistently potent products around. I’ve tried just about every type of their locally-made distillate-based edibles and they all work: the hard candies, the gummies, the rice krispy treats, you name it. Their tincture, however, is the best I’ve had anywhere. Tinctures added to a drink function like an everyday edible, with a typical onset between 25-60 minutes. You can also take a tincture sublingually for a faster onset, which means under your tongue if you don’t feel like Googling it. When I tried a sublingual application with MOTA’s tincture, I was high AF in five minutes, but it subsided after only a couple hours (ingested edibles usually last much longer). Mercifully, MOTA tinctures do not burn, so you can keep them under your tongue long enough to get every precious molecule of THC in your bloodstream. These days, you can find MOTA edibles at almost every storefront in town. I know for a fact that The Garden and All the Buzz keep them in stock!
Jackpot Distillate Gummies
Jackpots are vegan and gluten free gummy cubes that you’ll find in some of DC’s favorite I-71 shops like Gifted Curators, Legacy, and Peace in the Air. They come in brightly illustrated jars of 20 weighing in at 20mg of THC per piece, so you end up with 400mg. I had the chance to try these out myself recently. I had a 7 hour Amtrak ride, 'cuz I hate being rushed in airports, taking off my belt so that my pants fall off my ass, having my shoulders cramped in the seat, and on top of all that, it feels like you’re in stasis the whole time. Shark’s gotta swim, man! What were we talking about? Oh yeah, so I popped 2.5 Jackpot gummies for a total of 50mg and within an hour, I zonked out, and caught up on some much needed sleep. I was roused about 90 minutes later feeling fine, no lingering oogey-ness in my head. That’s how you know you’ve got your dose right, you don’t wake up drained and fog-brained. Jackpots, baby!
Is DC Weed Lab Tested?
As of today, there are no third-party laboratories within DC city limits that have the equipment to perform safety-based lab testing, not for I-71 recreational services and not for DC medical dispensaries.
Now, our editorial team discovered that lab results, even in licensed cannabis markets, are fraught with errors. We've investigated this thoroughly in this article and more evidence comes to light daily that lab-tested weed is a marketing gimmick.
The Problems with Weed Lab Testing in USA
First off, the labs aren't funded by the state, they are funded by selling testing services to licensed growers. This gives bad actors incentive to falsify the results in order to make these cultivators happy- one of the major drivers behind customer purchase decisions is THC percentage. Thus, the higher the THC they can put on the package, the better it will sell. Then, much like sports and steroids, those that provide accurate results underperform in the marketplace, meaning they have to cheat just to stay even.
Second, no two states share the exact same list of chemicals they test for or allowable percentage of each. With the lack of federal guidance, each state has been left up to its own devices. Speaking of, the science behind lab testing is far from settled. Some camps champion gas chromatography, others high-performance liquid chromatography. This is an airplane we are building mid-flight, folks.
Finally, even under the best of intentions, these labs are often staffed by inexperienced and undereducated workers who are under pressure to push through as many tests as possible every single day (I've heard equipment manufacturers boast of 90+ per day).
Now let's talk about DC and the nuances of lab testing in both the recreational and medical markets.
Why Isn't Initiative 71 Weed Lab Tested?
Washington DC is a small city with very limited land in which to grow. Meanwhile, California has ample room to grow, a crowded marketplace, and oppressive taxes for those that wish to operate legally. Unsurprisingly, the vast majority of weed in DC comes from California and other states that end up with a surplus of cannabis (like Oregon had a couple years ago). On the East Coast, Maine is putting out the majority of the fire these days, but don't knock our neighboring states of Maryland and Virginia. Some of the best locally grown cannabis flower available in DC is grown just outside the Beltway.
Some of it, for certain, is grown right in Washington DC by our talented marijuana artisans. More and more, we're seeing limited drops at I-71 smoke shops featuring the best homegrowers in the city.
Almost none of it is lab-tested, and even if the brand hands me a Certificate of Analysis from out of state, I'm disinclined to accept it. I trust my nose and sense of taste to judge cannabis and here at GentlemanToker.com and that's exactly what I want to teach you how to do. This website isn't about being some stuffy, pretentious, holier-than-thou kind of stoner. We are about empowering you, dear reader, with the tools you need to evaluate cannabis yourself.
DC Medical Dispensary Lab Testing
As I said at the start, to date, no DC medical marijuana has every been tested by a third party lab within the city for safety (whether they sent something out the backdoor to another state is possible, but unlikely). Up until now, the only third-party testing that has been done is for cannabinoid and terpene profiles. Some of the cultivators do perform their own in-house testing, but this is unreliable under the "we've investigated ourselves and found nothing wrong" doctrine of modern meme law.
However, the city did issue two licenses for companies to operate labs last year. My hunch, as the longest tenured cannabis blogger in the city, is that these were issued when DC leadership anticipated the removal of the Harris rider. With recreational cannabis sales nowhere on the horizon now, I suspect these licenses will never see use. Why?
The DC Council always intended for there to be third-party lab testing for its medical marijuana program. The problem is that their patient base is too small for any lab company to operate profitably here- Steep Hill had its foot in the door but walked away years ago. With adult-use sales again looking like a distant pipe dream, I expect the awardees will allow their licenses to lapse without ever setting up shop here in the nation's capital.
Top DC Weed Events in 2022
If you’re curious about cool weed events that happened or will happen in DC in 2022, here are a few:
- The DC Cannabis Cup: This annual event celebrates all things cannabis, from the plant itself to the products and accessories made from it. There will be plenty of opportunities to sample some of the best weed in the city and learn more about its many uses and benefits.
- National Cannabis Festival: This festival is all about celebrating cannabis culture in DC. There will be music, food, and of course, plenty of weed. This is a great opportunity to mingle with other like-minded people and learn more about this growing industry.
- The National Weed Day Celebration: This annual event is always a big hit with weed lovers from all over the country. It takes place on April 20 (of course) and features live music, great food, and plenty of chances to sample some of the best weed around.
- DC Hempfest: This popular festival celebrates all things hemp, from CBD products to hemp-based fashion. It's always a fun and informative event, and you're sure to leave with a new appreciation for this versatile plant.
Many of these events repeat yearly, so be on the lookout for more dates to come.
Where Can I Smoke Weed in DC?
You've successfully got weed in DC, congrats! Now, where do you smoke it? Legally, you're not allowed to smoke weed in public. The fine is pretty small ($25) so long as you're on DC-owned land and not federal land (like the National Mall, large parks, most waterfronts, government buildings, and federal housing). Most folks, myself included, just light up and smoke while we're walking down DC's eclectic blend of residential streets. The trendy commercial strips like M St and 18th St are usually fine in the evening and you won't find many Debbie Downers stepping outside of a bar or club at night, but you might catch some side-eye from indignant pedestrians trying that during the day time. Its better to step off the beaten path.
Most hotels in DC lack balconies and I don't recommend tourists try to smoke in their rooms. That being said, lots of hotels have rooftops or smoking areas where smoking a bit of cannabis won't be amiss. You could also book with a smoke-friendly BNB and eliminate worry entirely.
As with every other legalized state in the US, you aren't allowed to smoke it in your car, even if someone else is driving or the car is turned off. Don't risk it!
If you want the full rundown on how to avoid any potential hassles with Johnny Law for puffing a joint on your visit, check out my guide on how smoking in public works in DC and where you could consider visiting. And here's some other stoner-friendly options to consider:
The Best Marijuana Tours in DC
Lucky Chuckie Tours will pick you up and drive you around the Nation's Capital while you enjoy their signature, flower-infused treats. Book them for a romantic evening with your special someone around the city, the National Harbor, or their special destination of the month! You can book online or call 202-425-3280. Want more details? I wrote a review of my recent trip with Lucky Chuckie!
DC 420 - FRIENDLY LODGING
Planning a longer visit and want a place to stay where smoking weed is explicitly allowed? Go on to AirBNB, then filter by House Rules -> Smoking Allowed. You'll find several properties from single rooms to entire houses that will welcome traveling stoners with open arms and, in some cases, fat doobies.
Cannabis Meet-ups in DC
If you're new to the weed scene in DC, you may be wondering how you can get your hands on some weed. The best way to find weed is through friends or acquaintances who already smoke. Once you've found a weed source, make sure to ask about the quality of the weed and what strains are available.
If you don't know anyone who smokes weed, you can try attending one of the cannabis meet-ups. You'll be sure to meet some friendly weed smokers who can help you get started.
Cannabis Meet-Ups in DC are a great way to connect with other weed enthusiasts and learn more about the plant. Whether you're a newbie or a seasoned smoker, there's a meet-up for you. Since weed became legal in DC, there has been a rise in the number of cannabis networking events.
Most meet-ups are hosted through the websites Meetup and Eventbrite. On Meetup, there is an active group called DC Cannabis Connection. There are also informational events on topics like how to grow weed plants and learn more about medical marijuana. You can find contact information and the most up-to-date information on each event posting.
You can also find many cannabis meet-ups on Facebook and other social media sites.
DC Weed Pop-ups
If you see a DC Weed Pop-Up advertised through social media, be very careful when you’re at the event. Police are vigilant in making sure these events are run safely and legally. Make sure you’re only being gifted weed, and the local businesses at the pop-up aren’t selling it so you can avoid any issues.
Marijuana Pick-up Services in DC
If you're looking for a quick and easy way to get weed in DC, then signing up for a marijuana pick up service is the way to go. There are a number of different companies that offer this type of service, and they all have their own unique offerings. However, there are some things that you should keep in mind when choosing a pick-up service.
Do Your Research
The company you choose should be reputable and have a good track record. There are a lot of fly-by-night companies out there that aren't going to give you the quality product or service that you deserve. Do some research on the company before you sign up for anything.
You also want to make sure that the company offers good customer service. This is especially important if you have any questions or concerns about the products or services that they offer. You should be able to get in touch with someone easily and have all of your questions answered in a timely manner.
Search for a Variety of Products
Next, you want to ensure that the company offers a good selection of products. There's no point in signing up for a service that only offers a few different strains of weed. You want to be able to pick and choose from a variety of products so that you can find the perfect one for your needs.
Considering these factors will help you choose the best possible marijuana pick-up service in DC. Signing up for a service like this is a great way to get the weed you need without having to worry about where you're going to get it from. With a little bit of research, you should be able to find a company that meets all of your needs and expectations.
DC Cannabis Tours
If you want to explore DC in a non-traditional manner, then we’ve got the tour for you! Lucky Chuckie’s DC Weed Tour prides itself on being “the best cannabis tour” in DC. You’ll see all the iconic landmarks and enjoy some of the best weed gifts in the city. You can choose your gifts from their I-71 compliant menu and enjoy a one-hour journey on their tour bus. They even offer couples and group tours, so you can personalize yours to fit your experience.
Lucky Chuckie also has a spa tour available with mindfulness and restfulness sessions for travelers more interested in relaxing during their vacation. You can experience true relaxation and restore your body on their spa tour.
DC Medical Dispensaries
The DC Council has passed a law making it legal for medical dispensaries to sell weed. This is good news for weed smokers in the District, as it means they will now have access to high-quality weed from licensed providers.
Medical dispensaries are organizations that dispense medical marijuana. They usually have a license from the state in which they operate.
To get weed from medical dispensaries, you must have a valid ID and a doctor’s recommendation. Once you have these things, you can go to any dispensary in the District and purchase weed.
Where Will You Go To Find Weed in DC?
Now that you know all the places to acquire some green in DC, it’s time to start your search! But first, a few words of wisdom:
- Buy from Initiative 71 (I-71) compliant smoke shops that gift weed
- Apply for a DC Medical Marijuana Card
- Connect with other weed enthusiasts at a local meet-up or on a DC weed tour
You might not have to go far. You could ask a friend, family member, or maybe even your neighbor. The important thing is that you know where to look and how to ask for it. We hope you found this article helpful, and remember that we are here to provide the most up-to-date information for weed smokers everywhere.
Learning how to buy weed in DC can be intimidating at first, but I hope this guide has helped take some of the confusion out of the equation. Whether you are looking for the best recreational DC weed brands or just trying to have weed in DC delivered to you quickly and reliably, our list of trusted brands will be sure to please. The Gentleman can also help you find the best weed in lots of other markets! You can find marijuana reviews here of products I picked up from recreational Dispensaries while traveling in New York City, Hawaii, New Jersey, Boston, Denver, Seattle, Las Vegas, San Diego, Los Angeles, San Francisco, and adding more all the time, God bless America.
You can count on Gentleman Toker to be your guide to weed smoking in DC and beyond. We will continue to research updated information and add to our resources over time. Now that you know where to find weed in DC, go out and enjoy! And remember, always smoke responsibly.