Elevating Asian Voices in the South

Story #16

When Steve Kim opened Potent Potables in 2012, there wasn’t much of a craft beer scene in the Jamestown / Southwest Greensboro / North High Point areas.

At the time, folks in the area may not have been as knowledgeable about craft beer, but they were very familiar with the Main Street building where he opened his business. For decades, it housed the intimate, family-owned Italian restaurant Sadie Mays. It was popular among Jamestown locals and drew fans from around the area. 

Kim brought them back by transforming it into a family-friendly, adult watering hole with a beer selection that draws the respect of aficionados. 

But there’s more to this business owner than beer. He’s a husband and a dad. He has a daughter in high school and a son in middle school. In his spare time, he enjoys music and outdoor activities, including running. And he’s very proud of his Korean heritage. He took a few minutes to answer this PAVE Q&A regarding entrepreneurship, beer, and Korean food. 

More of Steve's Story

What drew you to entrepreneurship? Did you always know you wanted to own your own business? 

I believe I got the intuition from my Mother who has owned a dry cleaners for 30+ years now. I kinda gravitated towards having my own business when the opportunity presented itself in the form of a cell phone business way back around 2004 (?). 

In all honesty, I enjoy being my own boss even though that comes with the ultimate responsibility of everything falling squarely on your shoulders. 

What are some rewards?

I can make my own schedule, for the most part, and the satisfaction of the business being reflective of oneself. 

What are some challenges?

What isn’t a challenge? It’s the constant worry, even when you are not there. 

Tell us about your beer journey—what prompted you to merge the two (your desire to run your own business and love for beer)? 

I have almost always had a love/passion for ‘craft’ beer since the 90s even though the selection was extremely sparse back then. 

You can only take two beers to a desert island — what are they?

This answer has evolved over time but currently, I would say: Lager/Pilsner and Saison

Noodles or rice?
Both? But I think noodles wins in the end if you hold me to it. 

Bulgogi, galbi or burgers?
Bulgogi because it can be used in so many dishes. 

What’s the most underrated Asian snack? Or what Asian snacks should be mainstream?
Hi-Chew or the tteokboki crackers.

The one Asian food you can’t live without?
Easy: KIMCHI!!!! 

Soju or whiskey?
Definitely whiskey (bourbon)

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Story Collaborators
Tina Firesheets

Tina Firesheets

Co-Producer PAVE NC

Tina started her career in journalism with her high school newspaper, then served as editor for the campus newspapers of both colleges she attended.

She was a journalist at the Greensboro News & Record for nearly 15 years, covering education, local government, community news, and business. 

She was also the founding editor of 1808: Greensboro’s Magazine. Receiving awards in the Best Niche publications categories.

Currently, she is an associate creative director at Pace Communications. A lover of writing and creativity, she’s happy to be a founding Co-Producer for PAVE NC

Scott Muthersbaugh, Perfecta Visuals

Scott Muthersbaugh, Perfecta Visuals

Photography

After cutting his teeth in the newspaper world, Scott teamed up with renowned photographer Jerry Wolford to form Perfecta Visuals. Together, they create commercial photography and motion products with their signature mix of authenticity and polish.

Scott launched his career as a photojournalist in the daily newspaper industry after graduating from Elon University with a double major in broadcast communications and psychology. He has been recognized with numerous awards, including the Hugh Morton Photographer of the Year in 2013.

Dave Soper, Maunaleo Ventures

Dave Soper, Maunaleo Ventures

Media Production

Dave is a builder, fixer, and protector of digital things. He has worked for small businesses and Fortune 200 companies across multiple industries, including financial services, manufacturing, and defense.

Dave was born in the District of Columbia but considers the Districts of North Kohala and Hamakua his spirit home [once from the District, always from a District]. Dave does not do social media or answer the phone very much, so if you want to talk to him, you will probably need to go analog. Brah,  dasswhyhard

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