“There are so many creative people in this city doing such great work.”
Toronto is a world leader in business, tech, entertainment and culture – naturally, our city’s creative minds are a force. What we don’t often talk about is the fact that a lot of the people behind the city’s most influential businesses and brands are also cannabis users. Want to talk about doing away with the stigma around pot? The folks we profile in our High-Functioning Torontonians series embody the reason it’s just time to.
Meet Kristen Voisey, the founder and owner of Cocktail Emporium. She talks entrepreneurship, cannabis cocktails, and what she loves about Toronto.
Weedbox: What’s your current favourite strain?
Kristen Voisey: Something more energizing and enlightening. I don’t like smoking and feeling lethargic or antisocial, so I tend to choose a sativa or hybrid.
WDBX: What is your cannabis ritual?
KV: I usually prefer to smoke at night with a delicious cocktail or when I’m on vacation. I tend to use cannabis more recreationally – I don’t find it works medicinally for me. It’s my good-time substance! I like to use a vape pen or pipe.
WDBX: What do you love most about Toronto?
KV: The small businesses. Everything from retail stores, bars, restaurants, coffee shops etc. Toronto has such a great variety of all of these – more than most cities I’ve been to around the world. There are so many creative people in this city doing such great work.
WDBX: What helped you navigate entrepreneurship in your early days?
KV: I got a Bachelor of Commerce at Ryerson University, but I wouldn’t contribute one thing I learned in school to the success of my business. It was truly a learn-as-you-go situation for me. You get some things right and some things wrong. Learn and move on, and try to do more of what went right.
WDBX: What advice would you have for other budding entrepreneurs with a unique idea they want to realize?
KV: You’re not going to be an expert on your unique idea until you have experience. I had no idea about retail when I opened my store, or much knowledge about cocktails for that matter. Just get to it. You’ll figure it out! You’ll also figure out if owning your own business is right for you pretty quickly. If you really love being an entrepreneur, you’ll learn as you go.
WDBX: Cannabis cocktails – we have to ask – are you into them? If so, could you share a recipe for one you like?
KV: I like pairing cannabis with cocktails, but I have yet to try a cannabis cocktail. I think it’s better to smoke the cannabis and drink the alcohol, mostly for safety reasons. Since cannabis and alcohol are such fast-acting drugs, it’s good to know where you’re at with each separately. BUT combining both is my favourite combination for a good time. Right now, my favourite cocktail to pair is a Spanish Style G&T in a Balloon glass with Willibald Gin and Jack Rudy Extra Bitter Tonic with Cucumber Bitters. So tasty and refreshing!