We had the good fortune of connecting with Johnnie Gonzales / Pedro Toledo and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Johnnie/Pedro, what was your thought process behind starting your own business?
When the pandemic Johnnie was effected by it employment wise. Hospitals were forced to close certain parts down and with Johnnie working in the back office of the medical field hours were cut. As a house hold we lost 40 hours a month. It might not seem like much but when you not only have your regular monthly expenses but, you also have the expense of caring for someone who is going through medical issues it takes its toll. Doctors appointments, surgeries, prescriptions items that were were not to be questioned whether or not if this expense can wait- It couldn’t. We had to go on a tight budget and make some sacrifices in order just to survive.
One night, as we were getting ready for bed, Pedro and I were talking about “mexican candy” or “dulces enchilados” as majority of us call them. We started brainstorming on how we can make these the next day. We started searching “how to make homemade Chamoy?” but then remember Pedro’s mom is Mexican-descent and maybe she can help. With a 2 month process to perfect our recipe- a lot of trials and errors, we finally got it down. We gave our family’s samples and welcomed the constructive criticism which made us push for more. Then came the design process such as our name, logo, colors – Our vision… That’s when it hit us- ITS REALLY HAPPENING!
Gimme Gomas HTX was born!
What started as a hobby/something to fulfill our sweet tooth craving, became our small business.- which took off right away. We started off with candy and have been branching off to other products that fit our business esthetic.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
We started out a small fish in a big pond. We knew we had to be unique in order to stand out if we wanted to be successful. As we started finding out more about our competitors, we brain stormed and highlighted what sets us aside from the rest. Coming from a strong mexican background we believe the best tasting foods are those that are made with love and from scratch. We take pride in our homemade chamoy sauce which is the base product for majority of what we provide.
Coming from professional backgrounds, we both provided exemplary customer service which we apply to our small business. We are always willing to hear our customers feedback.
Launching Gimme Gomas HTX from home to friends and family was fun and a success but, we wanted to expand our business and showcase our products to a larger network. We then set out to do our first pop up market. We were lost and really didn’t know where to start. Then we saw a facebook post about someone looking for vendors for a pop up market out side of Almeda mall. We jumped for it and we had a successful market but still lots to learn. We made some friends that day other business and started to really get a fell for what market life was about. We believe that working with other business’s is playing a major part in how we grow.
We want the world to know we love what we do. Its not always about how much money you can make or about how many followers you have on your social media platforms but, that you are having fun doing something you love.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
First thing will be to catch a drink at one of Houston’s many breweries. Such as 11 below, 8th wonder, Karbach, Eureka Heights and many more.
As part of the Lgbtq community we have to catch brunch at Hamburger Mary’s and watch a drag show. From there we can explore the Montrose scene and take a stroll through The Eagle, Crocker, George sports bar, Ripcord and JR’s.
We have a team for every major sport so depending on the season we can catch an Astros, Rockets, Texans, Dynamo game. Followed by dinner in the Downtown/Midtown area. From Tex,Mex , BBQ to fine dining you want it Houston has it.
Of course every trip needs shopping. So we will take you to some of Houston’s hottest local pop up markets and boutiques.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
First and foremost our families and friends for supporting our journey from the beginning. The many different markets/businesses that believed and not only our products but us as well! Such as Shop Local Market, Los Jefes Market HTX, HTX Markets and The Famous Market HTX just to name a few. A huge shout out to the businesses that are giving us a platform to help us grow by carrying our products On Da Houses Tapioca, Micheladas El Centenario, Shop Local Market Space and Crystalz Boutique. A very big thank you goes out to Julia Gonzales aka Mama Goma for helping us with all of our markets and being a important part of our business. A huge thank you to all of our sponsors for helping us take our business to the next level.