Dominique Schexnayder – Women Who Mean Business 2023

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Dominique Schexnayder


Dominique Schexnayder is a local chef, sommelier, and owner of the popular Dominique’s Wine Boutique and Bistro in downtown Houma, supplying creative and delicious meals for almost nine years. Dominique also owns and operates Boutique Dominique, a wine and specialty foods boutique on Mystic Boulevard, and is a managing partner of Cuvee in Thibodaux.

Dominique is a graduate of Johnson and Wales in Charlotte, North Carolina with an AS in Culinary Arts and a BS in Food Service Management. She has also completed two levels of wine certification through the International Sommelier Guild along with Wine and Spirits Trust’s Level 1 and 2, currently pursuing Level 3. “My mother was a chef and owner of Cafe Dominique, and when I moved back to Houma she retired and I took over the business,” she said. “I had always grown up around home chefs and she is the one who inspired me to follow my passion.” However, Dominique’s path has not always been an easy one- after opening her second business in July of 2021, Hurricane Ida hit in August and Dominique was diagnosed with breast cancer the following October- from which she has now fully recovered.

Despite a challenging few years, Dominique expressed her continued love for the culinary arts, as well as the difficulties that she has faced as a woman in the field. “My favorite part about the job is the creativity, even despite the long hours,” she chuckled. “However, it has always been a maledominated field- for example, the first restaurant I worked in I was the only girl in the kitchen. Now we see more women getting into culinary arts, which is great,” she continued. “If you are a girl looking to get into the culinary field, my advice is stick to your guns. It is not always easy, but as long as you have drive, roll with the punches, and stay flexible– you can make it.”

She is excited to watch her businesses continue to grow and see where the future takes her culinary creativity. “I always have something up my sleeve,” said Dominique with a smile. “We are working hard to get back to where we were pre-Ida, and I know we will– after that, who knows!”