From December 2015 to October 2016, Ruckus was the only weed store on Capitol Hill. The space is tiny, but the aesthetics are on point: walls filled with paintings, drawings, old-timey portraits, and collage art, plus cabinets stocked with curios sure to delight and beguile. The cannabis products are in two countertop glass cabinets that look like they used to hold rare butterfly specimens.
The space feels almost like a closet filled with magic. But they have everything you need. As a Capitol Hill resident, the store has been my trusted go-to since they opened last year. Not only is it convenient to all the stores and restaurants on 15th Avenue (and right next to El Farol Mexican restaurant), and not only do they have a nice range of products and price points, there's always good music playing and the staff is warm and unpretentious, often wearing plaid, unlike the uniforms you find at some other stores.
Budtender Cole Vreeland told me the other day that what makes Ruckus distinctive is "we're very discreet, unlike some competitors." He was looking at the new Uncle Ike's right across the street. He called Ruckus "a small shop" for "local folks." He added, "We all live right nearby. I also work at Victrola Coffee," he said, referring to the coffee shop around the corner. "She also works at Remedy Tea," he said, pointing to his coworker.
He said all the growers they stock have been "personally vetted" by representatives of the store. And he said, "We like to feature quality bud at discount prices. We don't do cheap for the sake of cheap." As for all the art and curios? Where did all that come from? "It just sort of happened," he said. CHRISTOPHER FRIZZELLE
1465 E Republican St,
Hours: daily 8 am–11:45 pm