Prior to shifting her focus to the wine industry, Sarah obtained degrees in Electrical Engineering and Physics (BS and MS, UCLA), and spent time working as an engineer and project manager on the US Space Shuttle for The Boeing Company.
Opting to pursue a career following her passion for wine, she attended the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, NY, and gained sommelier and retail experience in New York City.
A subsequent year and a half of vintage work in Bordeaux, Italy, and Australia followed. She founded The Barrel Room in San Francisco in 2011 and currently serves as consulting Wine Director and Educator while living in New Hampshire.
Sarah recently founded Northeast Wine Company, a distribution company focused on introducing wines of the Northeast US to the New England area and providing education through seminars and lectures.
Sarah additionally teaches WSET classes and is a guest lecturer at the University of New Hampshire in Durham; she will complete her WSET Diploma in 2022.
The Wine Consumer in a Challenging U.S. Market
There has never been a more difficult time to sell wine in the U.S. At the same time the wine industry is dealing with a pandemic, historic drought, wildfires, and channel shifting to name a few, it is also dealing with an onslaught of attacks from the anti-alcohol movement while discovering a rotation of the older wine consumers into retirement, against the backdrop of a very different younger consumer. The result of the tumult is an industry that is likely to see a drop in volume sold for the first time since 1994. The industry context for selling wine is changing, at the same time the average consumer is changing. Hitting the consumer mark today is like throwing a dart at a target placed on a carousel.