Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in food and beverage but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Crystal Potter, Co-Owner of Potter Wines, located in Garden City, ID, USA.

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

I co-own Potter Wines with my husband, Von. We are a small family-owned winery specializing in exceptional traditional wines and a fun line of jalapeno wines. Yes, you read that right! We make wine with jalapenos. Our motto is to make wine fun, and we vow to breathe a little fire into the wine industry.

Tell us about yourself

We first started as home hobbyists who never planned to open a winery. We started by making traditional wines and ventured into jalapeno wines for fun. Little did we know that the jalapeno wines would catapult us into the wine industry because of their popularity. Von and I became enamored with this idea of being able to offer something in the wine industry that it was missing - playfulness and more creativity. Those things still motivate us today.

What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?

Our biggest accomplishment has been staying true to ourselves and our vision. We never wanted to do what everyone else was doing - where is the fun in that? In the wine industry, it's easy to fall the way of believing a wine has to fit a certain mold. I think you lose the purpose if you let that happen. Wine is about the story from inception to the glass. It's about sharing with others or enjoying yourself after a long day. If we can help spark a little creativity in people or inspire them to try new things, we've done our job.

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

Definitely the paperwork! If running a business was just about your product or service, wouldn't that be something? When your business is alcohol, the paperwork is endless. It's good that I get to talk to people at the winery and interact with happy guests, or the paperwork alone would probably cause me to rethink the whole thing. Oh, and the wine helps a lot, too!

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

My first advice is to be ready to work harder than you've ever worked before. Sure, you may be able to create your schedule to a degree, but you will work your tail off. This leads me to tip number two: to be sure you're doing something you absolutely love and believe in. If you're going to work your tail off, make certain it's worth it to you. Tip number three is not to take yourself so seriously. I've been guilty in the past of getting so caught up in the daily grind of running a business that I forget to look back and see how far we've come. Relish in the small victories and keep setting new goals, however lofty they might seem.

Is there anything else you'd like to share?

One more thing: Stay Open Wine-ded!

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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