Your reviewer was never blessed with the physical advantage known as Nintendo Hands that can absolutely tear up an immensely difficult old school side-scroller. I never got past the Turbo Tunnel on Battletoads; never made it to World 7 on Super Mario Bros 2; I had so many bad Castlevania runs that I joined a goddamn Little League baseball team! Despite my lack of aptitude when it comes to playing some classic 8 bits, this week I reached the Top Level in my search for some of the city’s best I-71 flower gifts.. And man am I excited to tell you about this awesome I-71 art and herbal gift shop. Follow me to Northwest DC to check out our new friends at Top Level!
Shopping at Top Level
Top Level is located in Cathedral Heights in Northwest DC. It’s an equidistant 15-minute walk to Top Level from the Tenleytown-AU Metro Station to the north or the Cleveland Park Station to the east. An even better option is to hop on any of the 31, 33 or 96 buses, all of which share a stop on Wisconsin Ave. just steps away from Top Level’s door. Once you’re on Wisconsin Ave., look for the unmistakable Cactus Cantina on the northwest corner of Wisconsin and Macomb St., then head west down Macomb on the same side. You’ll find Top Level a few doors down.
If you’re driving to Top Level, parking is a little less tricky than at most I-71 shops, though Top Level does not have their own lot. If you plan on making a quick visit, you might find some parking on the street, or at the Giant Food garage just up Wisconsin Ave.
Top Level is on the second floor of a tan brick building. You can’t miss the big white sign above the door. After you head upstairs, you’ll be greeted by a security guard who will ask you for your valid photo ID, at which point you’ll be let into the lobby. Here you’ll find an ATM, as well as some very cool large original prints from local DC artists hanging on the walls.
Once they’re ready for you, you’ll be invited into the back room. This room is sunny and spacious, with plenty of items to browse before you finalize your I-71 gift selection. On the near wall you’ll find some very cool Top Level branded merchandise, including awesome T-shirt designs, rolling trays, lighters, lanyards and stash jars — I’m absolutely going back for one of those trays. Top Level’s CBD products are neatly shelved in little alcoves at the other end of the room — everything from edibles to beverages to topicals. They even have CBD face masks! There’s an impressive selection of gear and smoking accessories conveniently located by the checkout counter. And at the center of the room sit three large display cases: one containing flower gifts, one with edible gifts, and the third displaying Top Level’s cartridges and concentrate gifts.
When you’re ready to make your purchase, you will be invited to browse prints from local artists. Pick your favorite, choose your weed gifts, and the friendly folks at Top Level will bag it up and have you on your way in a jiffy!
Did I mention Top Level’s reward points? You get one point for every $50 you spend on artwork, and at four points you get your first reward of 10% off your next print; at eight points you get a free edible, and at 12 points you get 15% off your next purchase. After 12 points, your points reset back to zero.
What’s on the Menu?
Though I already mentioned Top Level’s killer selection of edibles and concentrates, on this trip I was looking for some good flower. Top Level’s flower gift menu is organized into three tiers corresponding to quality and price. “Moonwalker” gifts are at the lower end, “Galactic” gifts are mid-range and “Cosmic” gifts are top-shelf.
On my visit, Top Level had five strains of Moonwalker flower to choose from, six Galactic strains and four Cosmic strains. Again, seeking a nice balance between value and quality, we were steered towards the Master Jedi on the Galactic menu.
Reviewed: Master Jedi
On this trip I was actually looking to get a nice nightcap indica with a strong body high. My medicine cabinet is set on morning flower, and I even have a nice little appetite-inducing happy hour flower at home. But I’ve completely run out of my “hot tub” flower, my snooze-fruit! After explaining these criteria to the good folks at Top Level, they suggested Master Jedi.
Like all of Top Level’s flower, Master Jedi came in an awesome branded mylar bag. As a matter of habit, I always stab my big nose into these bags before I eyeball their contents. This was a fruity bag, with some citrusy notes as well as the “tangy diesel” of its purported parent, Jedi Kush; the other parent is thought to be Master Kush, though there's some debate as to whether the other parent could be Skywalker OG.
Our buds were nice and shapely and presented a pleasant medley of colors, mostly lime-green with little veins of orange running through them and some dark green sugar leaves here and there. The nugs were slightly dry, and trichome coverage was light, as you’d expect at the greenhouse tier. Master Jedi grinds into fine, manageable piles for joints or bowl-packs, and its fruitiness smacks you right on the proboscis once it has been broken up.
When smoking Master Jedi, you get a bit of that tang on the initial inhale. The high absolutely lives up to its reputation, and had me in the hammock after three solid rips from a dry pipe—I giggled like a fool with the pipe resting on my stomach for like 30 minutes watching Gundam Wing before I snuck another hit. Damn, “bang for your buck” is a bit of an understatement. Don’t try to get any work done after leaning into this gift.
We highly recommend you get yourselves up to Top Level! Check them out at dctoplevel.com, and visit them at 3715 Macomb St. NW, Suite 201 for some of the finest I71 gifts in DC.