Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in food and beverage but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Tony Lopez, owner of Schastea, located in Providence, RI, USA.

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

SCHASTEÂ (shas-tee-ah) is happiness, an experience of lighthearted contentment or joy. To live Schasteâ is to be in the here-and-now, and once it is felt, it stays with you. At Schasteâ, mindfulness is the goal, and tea is the tool. We scour the globe for specialty tea and herbs to create "intentional" blends for well-being. At our tearoom, we guide enthusiasts and connoisseurs through a worldly selection of loose leaf teas and offer a mindful tea ritual that can be practiced in daily life. Use our tea to stay mindful of all your moments and to live Schasteâ.

Tell us about yourself

My initial motivation to start (any) business was to create a work environment that met the ideals I had been seeking in the market. We work hard every day to balance productivity with an appreciation for the moment.

What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?

What I'm most proud of as a business owner is a role I've seen Schasteâ play in the development of the special individuals who have been part of the team.

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

I've found one of the harder things about being a business owner is learning that ups and downs are par for the course and often not worth the emotional extremes. Ultimately, it's more about the cumulative day-in-day-out average and a trajectory toward the big picture.

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

  1. Keep a network of experienced advisors. You don't know what you don't know, and you'll need access to people who can guide you through the many sides of the business, especially the unexpected.
  2. Learn your strengths and weaknesses. In the beginning, you'll have to do it ALL; take this time to really identify what you like and what you're good at. And once it can be supported, outsource the things holding you back.
  3. Know, but don't obsess over your competition. Many markets are saturated, and YOUR mission needs to be what sets you apart.

Is there anything else you'd like to share?

It's not all poetry, a well-performing business can be a hugely rewarding achievement, but it requires committed work, risk, and sacrifice. Even then, success is not guaranteed.

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.