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BY Abu Mubarik, 10:30am March 29, 2023,

How Shakia Williams turned her wine-making hobby into a seven-figure business

Shakia Williams, founder of Cyrenity Sips Winery. Photo credit: Black Enterprise

Shakia Williams is the founder of Cyrenity Sips, a small-batch winery company in Southeast Pennsylvania. This makes her the first black woman to own a wine form in Southeast Pennsylvania. She started her wine-making career as a hobby and today, it is one of the best craft wines in the US. She joined the growing, yet small group, of blacks who are in the wine industry, which she is very proud of. 

Her venture into the wine industry did not occur in a vacuum. She worked at a winery in Virginia Beach before purchasing a wine-making kit of her own, resulting in the birth of Cyrenity Sips. She also got positive feedback from her family on her wines, which led her to open her own winery.

“I felt in Pennsylvania, specifically Philadelphia, there wasn’t a niche for small-batch wineries,” “So, I decided to bring that here, and here we are,” Williams told  Phl17

The winery consists of a toasting room and a violet light-adorned lounge. What is more, customers can order a wine that consists of six samples from the 18 wine stocks. 

“Our wines are carefully crafted to embody the essence of the particular grape varietal,” a statement on the company’s website said. “To give personification to the wines, each wine is meticulously named after relatives and friends.”

The 18 wines in stock include white chocolate wine, Cyan cotton candy wine, and La Peach wine – all named after Shakia’s friends and family.

Black-owned wineries are very scarce in the winery industry, but Shakia takes pride in knowing that Cyrenity Sips is making a difference. 

“Even though Black people [makeup] 0.1% in the winery industry out of 11,000 wineries,” Shakia explained. “I feel like showing diversity, [me] being a woman… I think it opens up people’s minds.” 

Last Edited by:Annie-Flora Mills Updated: March 29, 2023


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