Dr. Feelgood is coming to Brooklyn!
Kings County’s first medical-marijuana dispensary is moving in down the street from the Barclays Center this December, and its head pot pharmacist can’t wait to help locals get high — and healthy.
“I love New York, I love Brooklyn, and I can’t wait to bring cannabis to Brooklyn,” said Michael Quattrone.
Quattrone is opening his Citiva dispensary at 202 Flatbush Ave. between Dean and Bergen streets on the Park Slope–Prospect Heights Border, where he plans to offer customers wacky tobaccy–packed oils, vape pens, pills, and topical salves to rub on sore spots across their bodies — but not edibles, or the plant itself, because New York State’s strict marijuana policy only permits the sale of concentrates, and prohibits hawking anything you would light up and smoke, much to some budget-conscious’ clients dismay, he said.
“We’re not allowed to sell the flower,” he said. “We wish we could, that would bring the cost down for patients tremendously.”
The dispensary’s design will likely be nothing similar to those of the borough’s many smoke shops that hawk paraphernalia including gas-mask bongs, grinders, and blunt wraps, according to renderings, which show a sleek, sterile space that recalls a day spa, although Quattrone described it as a contemporary take on ye olde pharmacy.
“We were kind of going for a modern-day apothecary with a Brooklyn vibe,” he said.
Patients will have to show state-issued medical-marijuana cards to a Citiva employee before granted access to the shop’s showroom, which will be hidden from passersby by the storefront’s pane of frosted glass, according to Quattrone.
And once inside, the dispensary’s weed experts will help clients figure out the best type of marijuana-infused meds for them, suggesting various available pot strains bred to pick them up, knock them out, and yield various other sensations, he said.
But finding the right pot for each person is still something of a guessing game, according to the grass guru, who said factors such as body-mass index and other variables determine how the drug will affect an individual.
“There’s not a lot of science out there, so we’re going by our own experience and customer feedback on what works best for whatever ails you,” he said.
Unfortunately, New York State’s medical-marijuana policy is draconian compared to other states’ looser programs, and patients only qualify for it if they suffer from a short list of debilitating illnesses, including AIDS, epilepsy, multiple sclerosis, post-traumatic-stress disorder, inflammatory-bowel disease, and Parkinson’s disease.
And local doctors must undergo special training and licensing before they can prescribe weed, but the state Department of Health lists nearly 100 Kings County physicians across various disciplines, including gynecology, pediatrics, and general practice, certified to prescribe patients pot.
Clients’ insurance will not foot the bill for their medicinal Mary Jane, however, because marijuana is still illegal under federal law.