Our New Location

Hello all,

We have officially moved into our new location. We are now in collaboration with Farmhouse Café, so we run the front of house, rip delicious coffee and put out their food items.

What is different about Farmhouse?

For anybody who has eaten at Farmhouse Café, one thing is for sure- Their food is delicious, it is organic, and it is all locally sourced. Prior to us opening Farmhouse was a sit down, eatery with breakfast and lunch items. The transition for Farmhouse is to be as efficient as possible on the food side of things, to match the speed at which somebody could receive their coffee. We want everyone to know that the food quality is still the same, made and prepared daily- it’s just quicker. The food menu is still being worked on, but for the time being we are putting out items to see what sells and put more out that customers enjoy. We are leaning towards a grab and go, counter service style of business to ensure that we are being as efficient as possible. We will be taking all orders in house, so even though you won’t be able to call your order in you will know that our food case will be full of options as well as a daily soup and a few sandwiches that can made to order.

How do we, Calavera Coffee fit in?

It is pretty simple, we are our own business, serving coffee and taking all orders that come in. We are a multi-roaster coffee spot that has a revolving door of delicious coffee from a variety of coffee roasters. Our primary companies that we will always have are Vertigo Coffee from San Juan Bautista as well as Cat & Cloud Coffee from Santa Cruz. We want to establish a specialty coffee culture in Hollister and we want the community to take part in that. We focus on a direct approach to serve the best quality coffee we can. We have a unique line of merchandise that is designed mostly by our staff and conveys our one and only “Calavera” or skull.

We look forward to serving the community delicious coffee and locally sourced and organic food. Thank you!

WE ARE MOVING! WHAT'S NEXT!

Hey everybody,

For those of you who haven’t heard we have moved our business over to Farmhouse Café. They are temporarily closed to restructure their approach to serving amazing food to our community. Part of their restructuring includes collaborating with us, Calavera Coffee. We have decided to move our business into Farmhouse Café and collaborate with them, because we believe in growing our business and being able to offer more to our customer base as well as employees.

WHAT TO EXPECT

Calavera Coffee and Farmhouse Café will be operating as a collaborative effort to offer amazing, coffee, great food, streamlined and ready to go for our customers. Calavera Coffee will be offering a more extended menu, small food items, as well as handling the front of house for Farmhouse. We believe in Farmhouse and can’t wait to reopen and get things moving. We will be closed temporarily in order to restructure, settle in, and figure out the best approach possible. That will not take too long however, we want to remain simple and to the point. We appreciate our customers’ patience through this transitional period, but we promise it will be a great move for everybody involved.

WHEN IS THE REOPEN?!

We will reopen in the beginning of October to start serving ASAP. We have to handle all of the logistics and work out the bugs to make things as smooth as possible. We are still offering our coffee subscription, selling merchandise online, as well as answering any questions you all have.

WE ARE STILL TAKING APPLICATIONS FOR HIRE!

We are in the people business and we want to hire somebody who not only has the drive to learn, but somebody who loves working with the public and offering a really great service. Being a barista takes time, patience, and practice. If you know somebody or you yourself are looking to potentially join us- please email us with our contact info below.

Calaveracoffee@gmail.com

@calaveracoffee

OUR CAPSULE IS ON ITS WAY.... ALONG WITH EVERYTHING ELSE

Tuesday April 10, 2018

As we enter the middle of April we are expecting our barista capsule to arrive next week.  This means we can get our espresso machine, grinders, and our tools finally put to use, primed and ready to be set-up at our location.  These next few weeks will be dedicated to preparing a menu, figuring out logistics, hours of operation, the functionality of the set- up and all the finishing inspections, installations, etc.  We have a lot of work ahead of us and a lot to look forward to!

Our GoFundMe will continue to be up for the month of April and after that it is a wrap on the crowd funding.  I know I have said this before, but I would really like to take this time to thank everybody who donated, shared, and supported out our GoFundMe.  We appreciate those who followed our process and showed so much support.  With all of your help we were able to take this first big step and at this time we are more ready than we have ever been before.  By June we should be up and serving coffee in The Garden Shoppe, what has held us back for a while is basically getting everything in order and the process on permitting, buildout and everything takes a bit of planning and consideration.  We thank you for your patience!

At this time we have hired one individual and for the time being our staff will be small, because of our hours and our whole set-up.  We are so excited to bring somebody on who is enthusiastic, shares our passion to serve our customers, and generally excited to work in coffee. We really look forward to bringing people to our café inside of a local business that we are excited to work with.  We want everyone to be just as excited as we are.  We'll keep you all updated here soon!

https://www.gofundme.com/calavera-coffee

 

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WE HAVE BEEN BUSY/WE ARE GETTING CLOSE!

Monday March 26, 2018

Updates on what is going!  So, for the past few weeks I have been either out of town or running around getting things done in my free-time, that being said.. Our bar is being built out and should be here by mid-April, Nisha Sethi is working on some beautiful hand painted signs (I'll update you more on her below), we are just waiting to get the bar and set it up in The Garden Shoppe so we can figure out all of the details.  

We have had the pleasure of working with Nisha Sethi, an artist and activist from Los Angeles who does lettering, hand painted signs and does a lot of activist work for her community and all over California.  This past week, Nisha was not only featured on VICE, but Miley Cyrus reposted her "No More Silence! End Gun Violence." sign on her instagram page.  This is a huge deal, because Nisha is able to spread her message and empower everybody around her and especially when her following sees support and advocacy from people with an even larger following.  I was just super stoked to see that and very happy for her, so go check out her instagram page! 

Our capsule bar, I can now say will be set-up in mid-April and from there we will buildout everything around it that we will need for our espresso bar to function.  Capsule Mfg. is currently building it and I can't wait to get it going!  We have been very lucky to be working with such a helpful and proactive company.  I will not tell how the bar will look cause you will all see soon enough, but its going to be super clean!  If all goes according to plan we are LOOKIN AT JUNE TO BE OPEN!!!!

Cat and Cloud and Vertigo will be our featured roasters not only at first, but those are our starters and we are committed to serving their coffee and making these companies proud of what we are doing.  Our coffee bar will be set-up to serve the best coffee around and our goal is to be as helpful and pleasant as possible, We want people in The Garden Shoppe to come in, grab some coffee, hang out, walk around and be excited to come back.  We want to create a warm and gracious environment and collaborate with a business that we really feel is providing something unlike anything in the area.  We are so ecstatic to update you on whats yet to come, but that will have to wait a few more weeks!

Our gofundme will be open until May 1st, we want to thank everybody who shared, donated, and supported our gofundme, because it has been essential in helping us get some equipment and gotten us that much closer to the ultimate goal.  Our merchandise is still all there and ready to be swooped up, so if you would like a mug, pins, stickers or anything please visit the site- merchandise and place your order.

 

https://www.gofundme.com/calavera-coffee

https://www.calaveraspecialtycoffee.com/merchandise/

 

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UPDATE! WHATS GOING ON AS OF NOW.

Tuesday March 6, 2018

Happy March everybody!

So, we have a location at The Garden Shoppe in Hollister which I am super excited about and as I have mentioned before our set-up will simple and to the point.  We will have a small and deliberate menu focusing mainly on espresso and other little specialty items (don't want to give too much away right now).  I want to be able to serve some drip as well so I'm going to figure that in eventually.  Everything at first will be to-go, but obviously our goal is to get people to hang around for a bit and check out the rest of the shop.  If you are just going to run really quick for a cup of coffee that is also completely fine!  We want to be able to provide both services.

I ordered the "capsule" on Friday so that is being built as we speak.  If you are not familiar with Capsule Mfg. they are a California based company who builds and customizes mobile/permanent bar set-ups for cafés and they are an amazing company to work with.  Shout out to Toby and Amanda at Capsule who walked me through the process and got me all set-up with everything.  I won't speak too much on what exactly I have coming from Capsule, because I want it to surprise everybody, but what I can say is that we will be running our La Marzocco 2-Group Linea MP as well as our Mazzer Robur grinder on it, ready to rip some shots.  

We are also working with Nisha Sembi, who is going to be hand painting some signs for us and we can't wait to work out the details there and see what she can come up with.  We want to try our best to compliment the Garden Shoppe and create a nice little piece inside the business.  We hope to get our set-up going soon and work out all the details!  More to come soon!

 

I HAVE A LOCATION, FINALLY! WHERE WE GO FROM HERE...

Wednesday February 28, 2018

We finally have a spot! So, now what?? 

WHERE?

Our location is going to be inside "The Garden Shoppe," a collaboration with a local garden shop with succulents, beer, wine, and a nice outdoor patio.  The owner, Marci Huston converted a 150 year-old home located at 364 7th Street in downtown Hollister, into her quaint shop that was newly opened at the end of last year.  Marci strives to bring in new ideas and part of that is bringing in a specialty coffee espresso bar.  I approached her recently to discuss the idea of using a barista capsule designed by Capsule Manufacturing, a self-contained espresso cart that serves as either a stationary or mobile business.  I will be a taking a portion of the building and serving a small menu of mainly espresso drinks, pour overs, specialty items.  

What To Expect

Our spot will be small, and in the actual area where we will be serving coffee everything will be to-go, until we can figure out what exactly we want to do.  Our goal is to get people in for some conversation, walk around the shop, and out in the back garden area.  (We'll probably have some demitasse cups and gibraltars though, in case you want a quick espresso/macchiato).  This brings me to my next point, what will our menu look like?  Our menu will have following: espresso, macchiato, cappuccino, americano, latté (with a sweet option), mocha (Drink CACOCO), Chai Latté, Hot chocolate.  We will also implement occasional special menu items.  Eventually a small nitro bar menu like cold brew, chai, etc.  I also want the menu to be very simple and easy to order from, because we believe in what we will have to offer and that includes the people we will be working with.  The simpler, the better in my opinion, and we are super proud to work with the companies we are partnering up with.  Hours are still to be determined as well as our opening date.  

WHO ARE WE WORKING WITH?

Since we are in fact a multi-roaster, there is no limit to whose coffee we can feature on our menu, however the majority of the time we will be exclusively serving coffee from our friends at Vertigo Coffee Roasters as well as Cat & Cloud Coffee.  We believe in these companies and what they stand for.  As we have mentioned before these companies are dear to our heart and we have the utmost respect for both of them.  There are some new companies that we are really excited to start working with.  Capsule Manufacturing is a California based company who will be creating and customizing our very own espresso bar for us.  Capsules are specifically made to either be a permanent or mobile set-up and we can't wait to sit down and design it.  Superwow Factory out of Santa Cruz is a company who will be doing our decals, signage, and other things for us.  You can see some of their products in our website (all of our stickers).  They have been a huge help to us and we look forward to continuing our relationship with them.  Drink CACOCO is another company where we will be getting all of our chocolate based products for mochas, hot chocolates, and sipping hot chocolates.  They are another Santa Cruz based company and we can't wait to serve their products at our spot.  We look forward to working with any future companies who align with our vision and goals.

WHEN?

Once we design our capsule, get all of the permitting, and finalize everything we will be open in no time.  At this point we are just going to be putting together our last bit of planning into our buildout and set-up.  For all of you who have donated to the gofundme, we greatly appreciate you and you have truly taken a part in this with us.  We will be using the gofundme funds for our capsule and equipment.  For those of who still want to donate or share the gofundme, it will be up until the end of May and after that we will cut it off.  The gofundme has been a huge catalyst in getting our names out there and we really truly cannot thank you all enough.  Seeing the vast amount of support for us has been an eye opener and that we are doing the right thing, for our city specifically.  We can't wait to be open and work in tandem with the Garden Shoppe to make some really cool things happen in the downtown area of Hollister.  I encourage all of you to go check out the Garden Shoppe and support this business, because they have created a very unique place and it will only get better from there.  Be ready for some weekly updates about where we are at!!! THANK YOU ALL!

..GOFUNDME BELOW..

https://www.gofundme.com/calavera-coffee

 

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La Palabra: The Historic El Teatro Campesino in San Juan Bautista

February 19, 2018

Many people have heard of La Bamba or Zoot Suit, original plays written by the legend himself Luis Valdez.  For those who have heard of these works by Luis they understand how important they are to the Latino communities especially in California.  For those who are not familiar with these works or El Teatro- Luis began El Teatro Campesino which literally means "the Farmworker Theatre" because of the Delano Grape Strike in 1965.  He created a traveling theatre going all across California to different farms and hired farm workers to join the theatre and perform short skis called "actos" which in many cases were satirical performances addressing social issues in the Latino communities.  Luis worked alongside Cesar Chavez's United Farmworkers Union and was a key component in fighting for social justice for Latinos during this time in America.

Luis founded El Teatro Campesino as a brick and mortar in San Juan Bautista California and is just a walking distance away from Vertigo Coffee.  I have always been around this theatre, seen plays, and have gotten the chance to get to know Luis as a customer at Vertigo.  The theatre and what it stands for is something that I am very proud of and I have been invited to set-up a table at "La Palabra," a spoken word event that will be held in El Teatro Campesino on Friday and Saturday February 23-24.  I am proud to take part in this event because I have so much respect for the theatre and the people who are involved in it.  They are not only customers, but they have become close acquaintances of mine and I am happy to take part in the event.  There will be spoken word performances, vendors (such as myself), meet and greet, as well as local beer and wine.  These events are filled with caring and dedicated individuals who take pride in their work and are honored to serve the theatre and involve their community.

These two nights I will set-up a table selling merchandise, talking about my company, and serving Vertigo Coffee.  I was more than happy to do this event, because of the support that this event will receive and the amount of people who I have never met from the area.  I am proud to talk about my story and share it with others, especially at El Teatro.  I would love to see some familiar faces at this event and if anybody is interested please email me and I will give you the information.  There will also be a flyer posted on my facebook, instagram and website throughout the week.  I am happy to be a part of this very wonderful culture and share my industry with them.  I will also be proud to release my "Dahlia Stickers" at the event and give people a thorough look into what I am doing, who I am, and why I respect El Teatro Campesino.  

Instagram: @calaveracoffee

Here is the flyer/event poster to "La Palabra": https://www.facebook.com/events/200133423901326/

Working with Others, New Design, the Importance of Collaboration

Tuesday February 6, 2018

First and foremost, I would like to announce that a new design for our Calavera Coffee merchandise has just been finished and sent over to me by Matt Reid, an incredible artist from Sydney Australia.  I would like to thank Matt for doing such an incredible job. I had been following Matt on instagram and watching all of his work, from his vapid skeletal designs to all of his intricate detailed line work and collaborations with other artists.  I knew exactly what I wanted him to design for Calavera so I got in contact with him to have him start this design.  With my luck he responded super quickly and finished the design in no time, updating me along the way. This was amazing because the design looks so detailed and tricky, and he was able to crush it within weeks.  That just speaks to him as an artist and as a person, he put in the time and work and completed this amazing design.  He is a professional and I would have never in a million years been able to create what he did.  Because I was blown away with his talent I connected with him and as a result I wanted you all the blown away.  That's what I think is important, finding talent in others and being able to utilize their talent and work together.  

That is why working with others is so important, because when you can look to others who are professionals in their field you know that what you are outsourcing to them won't just get done, but it will get done right.  I am a strong believer in looking to showcase other people's talents and by collaborating with people like Matt and others alike you can be proud of the results of their hard work.  I think that having an artist's work as part of my company, especially somebody from the other side of the world is just more conversation to have, more connections made, and makes the world a little bit of a smaller place.  I have been trying a lot harder on connecting more with people and reaching out, because when I have not done that in the past, it has left me a feeling of wonder or a tiny bit of remorse.  By connecting him to my company I have connected people who know me to him and vice versa.   

For a lot of companies or people, time and money are such a large setback in getting there right things done and results in people either trying to do something themselves that they are not comfortable with.  In the end, the result will not be quite what it could have been and you may even have to do it over.  I believe in being self-sufficient and taking responsibility in creating for yourself, but I also believe in knowing when I am not capable of doing something as well as somebody else.  It is a very gratifying feeling when you are able to work alongside people and see real results.  Working together with people is a super celebratory thing.  When you believe in one another and build a trust it puts everything into perspective and trusting others with work is where everybody succeeds.  Whenever you try to do everything yourself, there are inconsistencies and rifts.  I want to prevent those rifts from becoming large problems and I want to believe in others as much as i believe in myself.  The same goes for me and my company, I want people to believe in me and trust in my judgement of my profession, coffee. I HAVE ATTACHED MATT REID'S DESIGN DOWN BELOW!

BE SURE TO CHECK OUT MATT REID ON INSTAGRAM @m_r92

WEBSITE WITH HIS MERCH   https://www.mercht.com/c/memyselfandi

GOFUNDME ALMOST TO $5,000.00!  https://www.gofundme.com/calavera-coffee

MERCHANDISE!  https://www.calaveraspecialtycoffee.com/merchandise/

 

 

 

Coffee, Music, Arcade Games

Monday January 29, 2018

 

In my life I correlate a couple of different things together and those things include music, coffee, arcade games, conversation, and fun.  Music is not only something that I listen to everyday whether I am in the car, at work, or writing blogs.  Music is something to set the scene, invoke a feeling, or just play in the background.  Either way, music is extremely important in my everyday life and I have chosen to do what a lot of other cafés have already done and that is, to spin vinyl.  I have been collecting albums, very slowly since the age of 15 or so, and I have been very particular in my collection.  I love the idea of having a physical copy of something instead of a playlist on some website.  I understand that records take up space, you have to replace the needle, and over time records get warped.  However, the idea of playing records, having personal collections, sharing, hosting records swaps, and all of these other possibilities are things that I love.  There are so many albums that are out there that haven't been discovered, are not on itunes, rhapsody or whatever else.  Records tell a story and having a physical copy of music, with the artwork, different colored vinyl, and being able to hear the completely different sound is pretty special.  

I have always been a collector, and another part of my collections have been arcade cabinets.  For the last 7 years or so I have been rebuilding, collecting, and messing with arcade cabinets.  I have a memory of going into pizza parlors as a kid and going straight for the arcade so when I got older I decided to find one and fix them up to have all of the games that I played as a kid.  I have always thought it would be cool to bring something retro like an arcade cabinet into a café for a few people to go down that nostalgic road.  Those things are obviously not huge draws for anybody to come into a café over another one, but what little things like that do is differentiate my café from others.  Those are just additional and interesting aspects to my café that I want to people to walk in and see to know that they are for sure in my shop.  The arcade cabinet I will most likely be putting in my shop is a sit down Astro City Sega Cabinet that I refurbished with games like Street Fighter, Simpsons, TMNT, and all the fun classics.  If you are interested in arcade cabinets check out the link below along with the gofundme and the merch. 

When you combine these two components with coffee that to me creates a pretty fun environment with tons of conversation and a lively shop.  I love providing different things for people to talk about and experience.  When I talk about records, arcades, and other things that not everybody has it can be pretty intriguing for both collectors and non-collectors alike.  Either way I just want to provide these things for people to come into the café and see and be struck with curiosity, conversation, and enjoy simple things like the music that is playing or the games in the cabinet.  Little things like that are fun and create a different environment for everyone.  Stay updated for what is son to come here shortly!!

https://www.gofundme.com/calavera-coffee

https://www.calaveraspecialtycoffee.com/merchandise/

http://www.shadaloo.eu/index.php?route=product/product&product_id=250Evan Morris

Starbucks: Where I Got My Start and Why I Respect Who They Are

Monday January 22, 2018

 

Almost everyday Friday in the summer of 2008 I walked down to the local Starbucks in Hollister and asked for a job, but didn't get hired until fall of 2009 where I started working in coffee.  I only drank chais and did not like coffee, really.  My partner numbers were 1678905 and I was really stoked on my first job.  My manager Lisa would sit down with us and do coffee pairings and have us try what we served in the café, I of course did not like any of it.  I was really excited because it this time I saw all of these older people working there that I couldn't wait to get to know and the idea of being a barista was really intriguing, not to mention my mom was happy I got discounted whole beans.  In working for Starbucks, I learned how to work hard, detail clean, deal with customers all at once (although being professional was hard at the time, because I was a goof-off).  If I wasn't wearing the new mops on my head to piss off my assistant manager, I was changing his last name in his contact info to Bieber instead of Barber.  Or even taking the company laptop out and watching the Giants in their 2010 World Series and then try to hide it when our DM made a surprise visit. I could go on about the stories, but it was fun.  I had a lot of growing up to do, but that just came with time.  I was good at my job there and 90% of the time, my goofing around did not affect my work directly.  I really got along with customers and had a knack of doing a good job, covering for people when they couldn't show up, and working effectively by myself on bar when it was busy.  

Working for Starbucks definitely taught me more than I realized at the time, because in dealing with unhappy customers, really nice regulars or holding down a busy bar I first did all of that at Starbucks.  I was able to see what training programs looked like for the first time, and how effective they were.  Looking back now I understand how good Starbucks is at setting up employees in effective workspaces with very little to worry about functionality-wise (at least in my experience).  At the time our store was not a drive-thru and we dealt with every customer face to face, and on any given busy morning we would have a line to the door for at least 4 hours (nonstop).  I really learned how to get through the tough work environments of being short-handed, equipment failing, forgetting orders in a rush,  and worst off running out of frappuccino mix during frappuccino happy hour (HO-LY SHIT DUDE).  It was all very crazy at times and in the process I connected with so many people in my community as well as established friendships with co-workers that to this day I still see.  

I have ZERO regrets in working for Starbucks and I in no way shape or form, dislike the company.  In fact I like Starbucks for what they have done.  I still go to Starbucks in my town on a regular basis and snag an iced coffee and talk with the staff there.  It is a nice environment for the most part and I enjoy the face-to-face interactions.  I became involved in specialty coffee because of my brother.  I enjoyed what I did at Starbucks (making coffee, talking to people, working with energetic friends)  I was just in the wrong environment and the wrong part of the coffee industry.  There was too much structure for I what I really wanted to do with coffee.  I loved the idea of watching a small business become more popular and develop it's own identity.  As I began understanding the difference in how good the coffee was I really started to respect and appreciate what I was doing. I think I have always been more interested in developing my own way rather than going underneath somebody else and watching them make things happen.  I'm all about that action and I never wanted to be somebody who would take all the credit with no work to show for it.  In working at Starbucks I wasn't able to branch out and do more and with specialty coffee I saw more opportunities in this community full of individuals who could truly be themselves where they worked.  I respected the individuals in this community who were able to really become professionals in a  way that I didn't think was possible.   

I wanted to have that same ability, to be myself in my work environment and be able to create and help the company I worked for grow.  I wanted them to see their vision come to life and I wanted to legitimize what they were doing because I was proud to work there.  I wanted people to see Vertigo as a place where they could go and feel really happy after leaving.  I began taking things seriously and becoming more of a professional, I mean I was still myself and I'm a jokester. But at this point I realized that I took this industry seriously and I wanted to be good if not the best at what I was doing for Vertigo as well as myself.  This all came with time and after a while understood that this was my industry and I was staying in it for the long haul.  I want this to carry over to my own business and I want to have people come work for me who share this same passion, not just coffee but learning what becoming a professional is and working in an environment where you can succeed.  Having an outlet like Vertigo allowed me to really become who I am now and working hard for them gave me a feeling of legitimacy, I have connected with so many people inside and outside of the industry.  

Without even realizing it, the timing what was most important.  I worked for Starbucks and had fun, worked hard, but I never took it seriously as a career or anything more than a job.  By the time I got to Vertigo I took the hard work and the skills that I learned and applied them to this new concept which was much more my speed. Although I was still very young and a jokester I began to take my role much more seriously.  I left Vertigo and went back to Starbucks, because of my school schedule, but that did not last long and I eventually landed back where I wanted to be, at Vertigo. What I took from Starbucks was that structure is what makes or breaks you, with structure everyone succeeds and without it there is very little room for success.  However for me, too much structure encapsulates people and people like myself do not do well in those environments either.  I believe that under a properly structured business, individuals who have the same idea as one another and about what the vision truly means will succeed together while maintaining their own individuality.  I don't want to take from anybody's individuality, but I want people who can be professional and understand why structure matters and why having a vision is important.  I learned all of that from both Starbucks and Vertigo.  

I don't like when people try to talk Starbucks down.  I respect the company and without Starbucks the specialty coffee industry wouldn't be what it is. I have taken much more from Starbucks in the long run than I ever realized up until this point.  I applied their skillset to the specialty coffee industry and it has helped me get to where I'm going.  After working for a company like Starbucks I was able to truly appreciate Vertigo and what a great job I had.  I found coffee at Vertigo.  I found happiness and I found my industry.   

CHECKOUT....

GOFUNDME: https://www.gofundme.com/calavera-coffee

MERCH: https://www.calaveraspecialtycoffee.com/merchandise/