The Antidote is the working name of this concept, but that may change, said owner Kirk Cartozian, who is also owner of the separate two-unit Argentinian steakhouse concept Gaucho Grill in the Los Angeles area. A third Gaucho Grill is under construction.
“We’re trying to do a true full-service restaurant,” said Cartozian, who said his company has a 4,450-square-foot location but is still doing due diligence.
This concept will be edibles only, he said. The intent is for guests to have a progressive experience, where they can be “educated by our receivers,” who will tailor their cannabis consumption individually. In the same way a bartender sometimes has to size up the customer drinking alcohol, Cartozian said his staff will have to be “in tune with what each individual’s body can absorb and handle” without having any harmful effect.
“This is the first of its kind,” he said. “I’m calling it the wild, wild west.”
The Antidote will have a celebrity chef — whose name Cartozian said he couldn’t yet reveal — and the plan is to have a Spanish-style tapas menu. The edibles they plan to use will be prepackaged and tested, so dosage and portions can be carefully controlled.
How exactly that will work has yet to be determined. Cartozian said they may use a commissary or another supplier, but there are still challenges to work through when it comes to execution, given the maze of regulations.
The goal, however, is to create a space where all feel welcome and included, even people like Cartozian’s own parents, who may feel cannabis is taboo, he said.
The Antidote will be a separate company from Gaucho Grill, with a different ownership group, he noted. But there may be one common element:
“We might allow for the [Gaucho Grill] chimichurri to be produced in a manufacturing facility with THC” to serve at The Antidote. “So it will be cannabis chimichurri.”