Chefs smoke marijuana and they like it

I initially wasn’t going to link to this New York Times piece about how marijuana has “fueled a new kitchen culture” focused on delicious, casual food that stoned back of house staff like to eat. As causality goes that’s a bit of a stretch and it’s not news that people in the service industry like to light up now and then. However I agree with Radley Balko and Will Wilkinson that the more successful people who come out as marijuana users the better chance we have of changing our disastrous drug policy, so for that reason alone the article is worth pointing out. The main reason I’m linking though is this appearance from Portland:

Duane Sorenson, the founder of the coffee roaster Stumptown, said that fat buds of marijuana often end up in the tip jar at his shops.

“It goes hand in hand with a cup of coffee,” he said. “It’s called wake and bake. Grab a cup of Joe and get on with it.”

This happened to me once even in the staid atmosphere of Carlyle. A customer (service industry, of course) left me a large bud along with his cash tip. According to my coworkers it was a generous gift but unfortunately it was wasted on me. Not knowing any better I took it home and put in my humidor. It turns out this is not the correct way to store it, which is apparently common knowledge among my friends who would have gladly taken it off my hands. It turned into a big ball of mold that went straight into my trash can the next time I opened the lid.

I consider this story karmic revenge for all the times people have told me about the fantastic Cuban cigars they’ve been saving for a special occasion without keeping them humidified.


1 thought on “Chefs smoke marijuana and they like it”

  1. Just saw your article and had to coment on it. This is extremely common in Eugene as well and I always wondered how much it has to do with our silly medicinal marijuana laws. The guest tipping with weed often looks like he is “hooking” up the bartender by giving him a bud with the street value of 10 20 bucks but, in reality, it would cost him/her more to give the barkeep a couple of bucks due to their growing the product for their “ailment”. Also I hate how its automatically assumed that everyone in the restaurant industry “puffs herb”. Hope the owner or manager isn’t present for these transactions

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