The Bold Italic’s 2020 Awards

San Francisco’s Best Dispensary of 2020: The Apothecarium

The Apothecarium managed to expand its offerings and locations despite a rocky year

Sophia Smith
4 min readDec 17, 2020


A spacious dispensary. A budtender helps a customer at the counter. 2 people talk on a couch. 1 person’s walking in.
Photo: The Apothecarium

This article is part of The Bold Italic’s 2020 Awards, which celebrate the Bay Area’s small businesses and local residents who have hustled and shown creativity throughout 2020. See all the award winners here.

The experience of buying weed has certainly come a long way, and The Apothecarium stands at the vanguard. Founded in San Francisco by a group of cousins and friends back in 2011, the dispensary has since expanded to include locations in the East Bay, Capitola, and Las Vegas and even has a presence on the East Coast in Pennsylvania and New Jersey.

The Apothecarium makes the whole experience of purchasing cannabis highbrow yet welcoming. The dispensary has a particular focus on educating and supporting the types of marijuana users who might otherwise find themselves at a bit of a loss.

During the pandemic, dispensaries were considered essential businesses from the get-go, so they haven’t had to completely close, but they have encouraged more people to choose delivery or place orders for pickup. To reduce in-person time, instead of chatting about your needs in the store, The Apothecarium recommends scheduling virtual one-on-one consultations. It also shifted its free public events from in-person to online, with offerings like “Cannabis and Women” and “Cannabis, Sleep, Depression, and Anxiety.”

The Apothecarium’s adaptability has been a shining example of how crucial community-supporting businesses can continue to interact with their patrons. That’s why our readers chose it as Best Dispensary in San Francisco in 2020.

We caught up with Eliot Dobris, spokesperson for The Apothecarium, to congratulate him on their win and to see how they’ve managed this year.

Read the interview below, and learn about the other nominees for Best Dispensary in San Francisco.

TBI: How have you managed to stay afloat this year?
Eliot Dobris:
During 2020, we’ve focused on pickup and delivery orders and doing as much online as possible. Our guests can now get a…



Sophia Smith

writer and editor // Ⓥ // Heavy weights, heavy music, words of all size