“I love an uplifting cultivar to ease the day and something mellow for the evening.” Sole Fiumefreddo – Oregon Leaf Budtender of the Month
Located in the historic St. John’s neighborhood, Portland’s Best Buds is a store with an iconic look, complete with a large mural covering the front of the store. They’ve been in the game for quite a while, too – and it shows. The store stocks many of Oregon’s most tried-and-true Cannabis brands, and some new favorites as well! Their socially responsible approach to Cannabis means a lot of things: a safe environment for everyone, caring about the products they stock and of course, extra care with customer service. Our budtender of the month is certainly a big part of what makes this shop so special.
How did you first experience Cannabis?
I first experienced Cannabis with a trusted pal on a Halloween night when I had just turned 18. Ironically, it was the night before I started my first day as a preschool teacher. I saw the world in a different perspective, looking at plants and trees a bit differently and felt more connected to the Earth. I remember feeling like there were waves in my body (probably the euphoria that we all like so much). After that, I would say off the clock use helped me de-stress after managing eight to 12 toddlers every day!
How long have you been a budtender? What’s your favorite part of the job?
Collectively, I’ve been a budtender for two-and-a-half years. At the end of 2015, I began my journey helping to change a medical shop into a rec shop, then I worked in a processing facility as an educator. I researched and trained other budtenders and colleagues about the endocannabinoid system, the plant and how all these compounds work within our bodies. With my collective experience within the industry, I love to help people find what they’re after! I love to comb through books with them, explore options and break down the plant – metaphorically and physically speaking.
I also love all of the smells of Cannabis.
Favorite WAY TO USE Cannabis?
I love joints! That community feeling that they give is so important. I also love edibles, but especially drinkables like Magic’s Ginger Beer. It’s simply the best! Edibles and tinctures help my overactive brain mellow out enough so I can get some sleep.
favorite strains, effects and terpene profiles? I love Durban Poison, Mimosa and Cherry Pie. I love an uplifting cultivar to ease the day and something mellow for the evening. I enjoy Cannabis that can help me focus and create. I really dig fruity, floral and earthy terpenes. Terpinolene is my favorite.
How do you feel about the current testing requirements by the OLCC?
I think that we need to add a mandate of the top three terpenes with every Certificate of Analysis, without the extra fees to growers. Looking at what science is telling us, we need to pay more attention to the terpenes in order to accurately convey the potential effects. I find it can be very difficult reducing a complex matrix into a simple defined effect when relaying just THC and CBD percentages. It’s particularly important in order to help those who use Cannabis medicinally, like my mom who used Cannabis to get off opioids. She battles fibromyalgia and finds great relief with specific cultivars/terpene profiles, like Purple Trainwreck.
What sets your shop apart?
We are so friendly here! We approach with joy and treat everyone with respect. We give back and honor our community as best we can, maintaining a warm environment and attitude. Honestly, this is one of the happiest places I’ve ever worked, and our managers Dave and Trent are the root of that. They respect and encourage us to do better for ourselves, and in turn, we do.
What are some of your hobbies/interests outside the Cannabis industry?
In my off time, I help facilitate social bicycle fun with my club Corvidae BC. I like to run my little doggo, Roo, alongside my bike – or I just bebop around town to my favorite dive bars. My fiancé, Lex, and I frequent the St. John’s Beer Porch for food, friends and fire, and we love catching movies at the St. John’s Cinema, whether they be spooky or comic book related. I really enjoy live music, exploring the planet and socializing. Art projects help my creative spark, especially if they involve paint and the flowers I’ve been collecting.
Portland Best Buds
6313 N Lombard St suite b, Portland
INTERVIEW by PACER STACKTRAIN | photo by DANIEL BERMAN @BERMANPHOTOS