Big smiles, laughter and conversations can be found only a few minutes walking distance from the BYU-Idaho campus.

Big, bold white letters spell the brand “Section 89” on a black shipping container.

The drink shop opened on March 2 and provides an opportunity to spend quality time with loved ones with a treat.

Linda and Boe Clayson, married students at BYU-I, founded Section 89. Boe is in the Nursing Program, and Linda is a communication major with an emphasis in social media.

Linda Clayson is from Melba, Idaho, and her husband is from Burns, Wyoming. The couple met while serving as missionaries for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in San Juan Puerto Rico. They got married in August 2023 in Meridian, Idaho and started working on their new business a month later.

Adding Caramel to the Cup

Adding caramel to the cup. Photo credit: Victoria Skalec

The business idea originated from Linda Clayson’s childhood. Her mother loved the bitterness of coffee but abstained due to the Doctrine and Covenants, Section 89, which details the Word of Wisdom — a commandment to abstain from alcohol, tobacco, drug use, coffee and tea. To keep the bitterness of brewed coffee, her mother started drinking brewed cacao.

The Claysons’ always wanted their own business. After getting married they quickly began creating their brewed cacao business. They first crafted a good name and created a menu.

“We wanted to make a coffee shop (where people) could go and not have to worry about the ingredients and what they couldn’t get because of their beliefs,” Boe Clayson said.

For members of the Church, finding a drink at major beverage companies can be difficult. The drinks at Section 89 do not contain any coffee bean or tea extract, aligning with the standards described in Doctrine and Covenants 89.

Section 89 Container

Section 89 container. Photo credit: Victoria Skalec

Their specialty is the brewed cacao, which is different from hot chocolate as it is made from cacao beans.

“We grind them, we roast them and then we like brew them. So it’s just hot water steamed through them. So it’s basically like 100% dark chocolate drink,“ Boe Clayson explained.

The Clayson’s heavily researched the best quality cacao beans. Searching for a good supplier took a while. They looked into many big businesses, but they were all niche and expensive. In the end, they chose a small, local farmer from which they get their beans.

“We import cacao beans directly from the Dominican Republic, and roast them and brew them right here,” Linda Clayson said.

After securing the cacao beans, they needed to find a location to sell. Since commercial spaces are expensive, they chose to transform a shipping container. Boe Clayson believes this was the most time-consuming part.

Originally the couple purchased the container in Oregon, which they transported to Boise for the transform. After shipping it to Rexburg, they applied the finishing touches, like painting the name on the container. Once they had finished, they were ready to open.

Starting an ordered cold brewed cocoa

Starting an ordered cold brewed cacao. Photo credit: Victoria Skalec

Customers can choose if they want their brewed cacao iced or hot, which flavor(s) to add, optional whipped cream and a sauce, like caramel.

Customers can also add flavors to their drink order, similar to a soda shop.

Emma Grimm is a new costumer at Section 89. She got an iced hot chocolate and loved it.

Boe Clayman giving Kathrine Holm her drinks

Boe Clayman giving Kathrine Holm her drinks Photo credit: Victoria Skalec

“I’ve seen a bunch of advertisements on social media, and I was just intrigued by what Section 89 is,” Grimm said. “I just think it’s super important to support small businesses, and they have amazing drinks so why not?”

For more information about Section 89 visit their Instagram. They are located on 250 W Main Street.