Higher Leaf is Kirkland's first pot shop. They opened last spring. It's tucked into a commercial building off the beaten track, and it's not easy to get to by bus, but what are you doing on the Eastside without a car, anyway? Should you make the drive, you'll be treated to a pleasantly bright store with plenty of wood paneling, polished concrete, and snazzy mid-century modern chairs.
As for the pot, they won a 2014 Dope Cup award for "People's Choice Best Flower." The woman who was their buyer at the time is perhaps the savviest pot connoisseur I've ever met. Currently, they pride themselves on offering "a wide range of CBD products including flower, concentrates, topicals, tinctures, and edibles," so says brand ambassador Erica Laxson. They also offer medical patients a 10 percent discount, to best the lesser discount offered under the state's program (which is no sales tax). That's awesome of them. And, medical patient or not, they've got a pretty decent loyalty discount: If you buy pot from them four times in a row, your entire fifth purchase is 20 percent off.
They also invite a different producer-processor (read: grower) to the store every Friday for an informational session. If you consider yourself a somewhat conscious consumer, you owe it to yourself to stop buying pot with the funniest strain name (I know it's hard to resist Sparkle Cherry Unicorn Dander) and start getting to know your growers. TOBIAS COUGHLIN-BOGUE
12525 Willows Rd NE, Suite 10, Kirkland,
Hours: Daily 9 am-11 pm