Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in food and beverage but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Cassandra Beldowicz, Founder of Corcilla Cellars, located in Portland, OR, USA.
What's your business, and who are your customers?
I own a small winery in Portland, OR. I'm hoping my customers are people who like wine and people who don't know they like wine yet.
Tell us about yourself
I fell in love with winemaking after taking a break from a healthcare career. I was offered an internship in Napa. Every day of that first harvest was hard work! I cried at least twice from pure exhaustion. But I also was so pumped to be there. Watching these grapes that you're touching as they come up the conveyor belt turn into wine that you're putting into an oak barrel a couple of weeks later, it's magic! The science that gets to play with the art, it's just so satisfying to be a part of it.
What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?
I just bottled my first wine a couple of weeks ago, from sourcing a grape contract with the farmer to an actual bottle. And it's beautiful! I've had these ideas in my head for months, years. And I got to hold a bottle, with the label and cork that was a true labor of love, and think, "Holy shit! I actually did it!"
What's one of the hardest things that comes with being a business owner?
At the end of the day, the buck stops with you. Which is great, but it can also feel like a lot of pressure. That, and I haven't been able to pay myself yet. LOL!
What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?
- Know what you don't know and outsource that.
- Have some people in your corner, friends or family, that will let you bounce all your ideas off them, let you cry, and celebrate every single accomplishment, no matter how small.
- Spend money on important things. Packaging, logo, and a user-friendly website. These are the faces of your business, the first impression for the customer.
Where can people find you and your business?
If you like what you've read here and have your own story as a solo or small business entrepreneur that you'd like to share, then please answer these interview questions. We'd love to feature your journey on these pages.
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