Windy City Cannabis Dispensaries are, despite their name, not at all located in Chicago. All 6 locations are located in suburbs just outside of Chicago. My local dispensary is their Posen location, and it’s the first dispensary I ever went to, in February of 2020. It was my first impression of how legal cannabis would be sold, and it was not at all what I expected. In fact, from their drab gray carpeting and sickly blue walls, it was quite disappointing. What I hoped would be a fun and groovy experience, was nothing short of hitting up a local pharmacy. Sure, medical cannabis has always been the priority, but does a dispensary that sells recreational cannabis have to look so drab?
I actually don’t really shop at dispensaries. I mean, dispensaries are usually where I picked up weed when my usual plug wasn’t available. Still, I have visited this Windy City Cannabis location at least 20 times since it opened. It’s about a mile away from my home, so it’s been convenient. It’s where I have bought most of my dispensary goodies. From those shady tasting Verano Swift Lifts, to the Incredibles Chocolates, it has routinely been my one stop shop. Their online menus, while sometimes finicky, are convenient, and informative. Their selection is pretty standard for a random dispensary, you see your usual brands and the occasional (although very rare) sale. Their Posen location has actually evolved significantly since it opened, and I believe the fact that it was sold to Parallel in April of 2021 that we’ve seen such a huge change.
You see, back in 2020, this dispensary was not at all friendly or pleasant to be in.
The carpeting and walls, as I mentioned before, were reminiscent of a free clinic. Back when I first started going to Windy City Cannabis Posen it was the type of place that you just wanted to get out of fast. Their security guards, although always pleasant, worked to get the flow of people going. People in, people out, without so much the faintest “enjoy your weed.” It was being run like a cannabis windmill, easily. The lack of competition and overabundance of customers was evident in their lack of passion for their establishment. I was bored of it by my second visit. But, like most dispensaries without much local competition, I had no choice but to continue going there. Despite how unpleasant it could be, I kept going. Out of convenience.
Then there was the issue of who they were hiring. Rude, unpleasant girls who on multiple occasions scowled when I asked for advice. As a person who was already struggling with the idea of supporting dispensaries when not even one was majority owned by a black or brown person, it was difficult to walk into a dispensary and only see white people working there. Especially in Posen, who is surrounded by suburbs like Dalton and Harvey. It was insulting, and despite the long lines of black and brown customers there to buy weed, only the security guards outside were employees of color at Windy City Cannabis Posen.
One day, I went into Windy City Cannabis and their walls were painted.
Then I went another time and they had new flooring. Sure the color scheme had remained the same, but it seemed to me that whoever the higher ups are, they were noticing the importance of a nice set up. Even in Posen. I came in and suddenly there were glass pieces on the counters, a new faux grass logo. Suddenly Windy City Cannabis started looking like all the money they were making. I think it’s important for dispensaries to put effort into their waiting areas, to make the process of purchasing cannabis, be it for recreational or medical purposes, a pleasant process. One that reflects the tarnished history of the now money making plant.
Their online presence is minimal, and their lack of specials is sometimes disappointing. It’s a recurring theme amongst dispensaries. Tight social media rules make it difficult for cannabis businesses to not only make but also maintain social media pages. With Instagram targeting cannabis brands, and Facebook not allowing you to advertise them, it’s almost worth forgoing it altogether. Still, even their websites offer little information, few opportunities to save money, and even less ways to learn about the origin of the dispensary itself. I wish dispensaries and even Cannabis brands made a bigger effort to publicize their work and the work they’re doing not only within the industry but also within their communities. If at least only on their website.
Still, they are miles from where they started. They now have daily specials, and even host pop ups for brands at their locations. It’s a different feeling these days, walking into Windy City Cannabis Posen, where their walls are no longer drab and their floors are no longer depressing. The employees, who are now seemingly a diverse crowd, welcome you with a smile, Ipads in hand, ready to help you with your order. There is every indication of effort, in fact, you can clearly see the work that’s been done to make it a pleasant place to visit. Still, something about it, with its yellow, bright lights, and its beat up parking light, makes you feel uneasy. It makes you feel like a number, just another customer feeding money into Illinois Cannabis. The same Illinois Cannabis that we are forced to buy weed from, at dispensaries that we wish we never had to visit and from brands who we would never want to support.
You can visit Windy City Cannabis at any one of their locations. This review is strictly based on my history with their Posen location. They have 5 other locations that I haven’t (wanted to) visit. You can visit their website to stay up to date on specials and Windy City Coupon codes.
Mex and the City Chicago is a Cannabis blog from the point of view of a brown cannabis consumer. Maintaining a strong belief in social equity, I discuss my opinions on the topics of cannabis law, politics, and current events. You can read similar articles, like my Review on Mission Dispensaries or My First Cannabis Tour.