Sara Beer

Sara Beer

Pilcrow Wine (Winemaker & Owner)

Sara Beer’s formal academic training would not be a clue to her becoming a winemaker. To be specific, she earned a B.A. in Business Administration from Georgetown University in 1998; her specialized field of study was marketing. This said, after graduating, she found her way to Northern California, where her marketing skills led her to a position of fine wine specialist with the Henry Wine Group from 2000 until mid-2001. Still in the marketing mode, Sara joined Franciscan Estates as its District Sales Manager after leaving the Henry Wine Group and remained there until the end of 2002.

Sara’s marketing expertise continued to be her calling card when she moved to Duckhorn Wine Company to oversee its wholesale markets. Sara was Vice President, California Wholesale Sales when she left Duckhorn in early 2016 to found True North Wine Merchants in Napa, where she is the Proprietor. The firm is a boutique import and distribution company servicing restaurants and fine wine retailers in California. Its portfolio is curated to champion wineries with a clear point of view, sincerity in their story, and wines that acutely represent their own values.

Immediately after leaving Duckhorn, she and her husband Jonah Beer founded Pilcrow, producing their first vintage in 2014 and sourcing their fruit from vineyards such as Pym-Rae and Ghost Block. Sara’s winemaking goal is to produce classic-styled, lower-alcohol, higher-acidity food-friendly wines. Her approach is gentle and completely non-manipulative in the winery and she prefers to showcase the varietal and the site.

The name Sara and Jonah chose for the winery is appropriate, as illustrated in their own words: “This is a pilcrow: ¶. For millennia this symbol has marked the beginning of a new argument, the start of a new thesis, or the launch of a new chapter. Pilcrow is our argument in celebration of handicraft. It is our thesis that the quiet wines of ‘old Napa' have a place in today’s world of fine wine. And it is undoubtedly a new chapter in our story.”