COLORADO: Aside from the 50 pounds of weed on the counter, the superfood-green butter, and the whole place being enveloped in a ganja bouquet, this bakery is really just like any other bakery. Indeed, it smells like happiness in Love’s Oven, a marijuana edibles kitchen in an industrial sliver of Denver, and the lead baker, Hope Frahm, a 30-year-old blonde with a tattoo of the Love’s Oven insignia on her arm, is hugging a 2-pound bag of trim, saying, “Oh my God, this does smell good.”
Even though legal commercial weed edibles are only six months old, most bakeries have already streamlined their processes to use hash oil, which is extracted through butane or CO2. But as Frahm says, Love’s Oven is one of the few bakeries left in the state that still use naturally infused cannabutter: “We think this is more natural and gives the product a unique taste. Some people swear hash oil is the way to go because it doesn’t leave a taste.” She shrugs, “Different strokes.”
As Frahm takes me around the kitchen, the afternoon shift just getting started, she says with that 50 pounds of green they’ll be able to make enough butter for two weeks’ worth of edibles — or some 27,000 products. To that end, a worker in the corner is stirring a tub of liquefied cannabutter atop an ice bath — the result of 4 pounds of trim — and it looks like green tar, or some kind of alien lava. Another worker is cutting a tray of Magic Bars (graham cracker crust, sweetened condensed milk, coconut, butterscotch, walnuts, chocolate chips … THC) into individual segments. And another is sharpening a large knife.
Back in 2009, Love’s Oven began as an at-home, single-worker bakery operating on the fourth medical marijuana edibles license awarded by the state. When the regulations changed, the team switched to a commercial kitchen. When the rules changed again in 2010, they moved to where they are now — a plain white storefront without signage next to a highway underpass and an energy plant. And since Jan. 1 of this year, Love’s Oven has already expanded from two to 17 employees.