By Zarah Parker
Michael Migl believes CBD is the future.
So when he saw a parallel between coffee and cannabis, he and Andrew Bailey decided to open Amsterdam Co. in the Heights.
For Migl, those parallels include both being a plant, both being grown with intention and both being “exotic,” or sourced from other countries.
The space at 807 W. 19th St. softly opened Monday and carries CBD additives that customers can put in their coffee, CBD-infused coffee and other CBD items, like cookies.
CBD is short for Cannabidiol, which is a product that is derived from cannabis but does not contain THC, the psychoactive compound in marijuana.
“CBD, in a nutshell, is an alternative to pharmaceuticals,” Migl said.
A phrase the shop uses is “plants not pills.” Bailey said a lot of people use CBD for headaches, anxiety, pain relief and muscle relief.
“It works differently for everyone. You have to find what works for you,” Bailey said.
The business partners also talked about the stigma around CBD and how some people get it confused with marijuana.
“They’re not educated, so they think we’re just a bunch of stoners,” Bailey said. “And it’s really not that.”
Migl said CBD does not get you high, nor can someone overdose on it, but that it tends to have a calming, relaxing effect.
“With coffee it’s a balance. Here we’re going to focus more on additives,” Migl said. “We will have CBD-infused coffee, but we’re big in the coffee community and it’s actually frowned upon because it’s not a natural process. We believe it’s better to make your coffee and add it to it. Then you know what you’re getting in the cup of coffee.”
A way Migl and Bailey plan to curb the stigma around CBD is to hold educational workshops. Once it is safer to gather in groups, they will invite vendors to talk about their products, hold “lunch and learns” and more. Bailey said what also helps is that they use only reputable and established vendors.
They also plan to be involved in the community by inviting different roasters in and rotating their coffee. The pottery available at Amsterdam Co., like the mugs, also links them to the community, as they are made by a potter who lives two doors down from the coffee shop.
While CBD is part of what the coffee shop offers, Migl said it’s really only the plus sign on the end of “coffee shop.” Coffee is their focus, and they’ve included the CBD element to begin bridging the gap between coffee and cannabis.