Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in food and beverage but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Matan Steinfeld, owner of Bull in China, located in Portland, OR, USA.

What's your business, and who are your customers?

We create and curate better quality barware for professionals and home enthusiasts alike. Everything starts from satisfying the needs of bartenders. Any gear that can survive the perils and rigorous life of a packed restaurant or high volume bar proves itself worthy for any other circumstances life can throw at it.

Part of our DNA as a Pacific NW-based company is also highlighting skilled craft people and showing off what they're capable of producing. We're very proud to work with amazing artisans to create some products locally that are truly unique and gorgeous too.

Tell us about yourself

It all started many years ago... I had just learned this new term "entrepreneur" in one of my business school classes and thought to myself, "That's it! This is the path I want to take." There's this romantic story arc: the bland existence before the company, then the idea strikes. Of course, it's never as simple as that. Following comes the struggle of bringing that idea to life, the setbacks, the near-failures along the way, and, finally, after all the trials and tribulations, the well-deserved triumph!

Well, 15 years of liquor industry experience later, after a lot of "now's not the right time" and "but I still have some much I need to learn," I finally made the plunge. I purchased Bull in China from the original founders. It was my way of staying in the industry I'd grown to love, but finally, do create something on my own.

What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?

It sounds straightforward enough, but this question really threw me. Don't get me wrong; there is a steady trajectory to the company. I can fairly confidently say that things are developing and progressing in a positive direction (most days). What have I accomplished, though? Maybe it's because my goals are always changing, but those accomplishments feel like they're always just a little out of reach. Just a little bit further. It's like trying to get to the end of the rainbow. Somehow, even as I keep traveling in the right direction, it always seems to be just the same distance away.

What's one of the hardest things that come with being a business owner?

Trying not to bring it up in every conversation you have with friends and strangers alike. The business encompasses 90% of what I think about all the time (mixed in with a sprinkle of what I'd like to eat for my next meal). It's hard to remember that nobody else cares about your business the same way you do, so do your best not to bore them with your not-as-fascinating-as-you-think minutiae.

What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?

  1. Hope you're not interested in paying yourself for a year or two.
  2. Seek other people's opinions because they have valuable perspectives outside your own, but don't forget, you're the ultimate decision-maker. Try not to get paralyzed by indecision as everyone tries to give their [often contradictory] advice.
  3. Things will always go wrong. Like, all the time, nonstop. Don't let that dissuade you. Treat it like a game, and treat each obstacle as another puzzle to solve, so you can keep playing.

Where can people find you and your business?


If you like what you've read here and have your own story as a solopreneur that you'd like to share, then email; we'd love to feature your journey on these pages.

Feel inspired to start, run or grow your own subscription business? Check out and learn how you can turn "one day" into day one.