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Wine Company Owner Carves Her Own Niche in a Male-Dominated Industry

Sherrijon Gaspard is one of more than 60 black-owned wine producers in an industry dominated by white men and about a third of which are women. She became interested in wine about four years ago, but wanted to create something fun, and something that would appeal primarily to women. She did. It is called Vina Sympatica sparkling wine.

Girls just want to have fun...

Gaspard has produced award-winning women’s labels of Red, White, and Violet sparklers she designed with girls’ night out in mind. She didn't want to create serious wines, like the French; she wanted to create sparklers that could be mixed with other drinks at parties. She doesn’t produce the wine but contracts a winery in Northern California to manufacture it using her formulas, using a variety of fresh fruits. Her dream is to own her own vineyard and have an on-site winery and tasting room.

Still flying high

Gaspard started out as a flight attendant, and at the same time began working in Hollywood production. It was then she grew a strong desire to run her own hospitality business, so she put herself through business school at Pepperdine University. Gaspard's mother, who passed away in 2016, helped her fund her business. She now sells her $20 a bottle wine on and local wine retailers, including Boccato’s Groceries in Hermosa Beach, Le Petit Vendome Wine and Spirits in La CaƱada and Circus Liquor in North Hollywood.

Gaspard is still a flight attendant, flying with Alaska Airlines, but she remains dedicated to her wine-making business and is working on plans for another wine label launch.