Our Team

Sarah Markman

Founder

Sarah’s interest in wine started at a young age. Her brother worked at Joseph Phelps for over a decade, and while spending time with him, she was able to wander through the vineyards and taste out of barrel and bottle with many incredible winemakers. Those early experiences ignited a passion for wine and a desire to work in that world and to live in the Napa/Sonoma region. But the summer of her 18th year and a trip to NYC led to a sea-change on that front and she spent the next 10+ years working in fashion in New York, Milan and Paris. 

Sarah is a culinary school graduate and loves to cook and entertain. She also loves the hospitality industry and is involved in many things on that front in Chicago. She is a Certified Sommelier (pursuing her advanced certification) with The Court of Master Sommeliers.  She loves both wine and yoga for the same reason, "One can spend their whole life studying both and still barely scratch the surface." 

Kestral is named after one of her favorite horses.  

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Colleen Healy

Sales - Managing Director

Colleen holds a culinary degree from Kendall College and often couples that with her knowledge of fresh, seasonal ingredients to create unique sparkling cocktails as well as champagne and food pairings.

Following her work at Pops for Champagne she joined Strategic Group to represent Moët Hennessy as their first Portfolio Specialist in Illinois.  She represented the Moët Hennessy’s luxury brands for just over three years until she transitioned to Winebow Fine Wine and Spirits as the District Manager overseeing a team of several salespeople.  

She is excited to return to the world of fine wine and champagne and will be utilizing her vast industry experience to showcase the Kestral Portfolio.

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Dustin Chabert

Sales - International Wine Specialist

Dustin’s passion for wine started with a single taste of 1949 Ruchottes-Chambertin while working as a server in a high-end French restaurant in Chicago. The son of a chef, Dustin grew up in kitchens, helping wash dishes in the kitchen of famed Le Français on weekends. Prior to pursuing wine, he worked in some of Chicago’s top dining rooms as a server, managed a two-star Michelin restaurant, ran the beverage program at Momotaro, and most recently worked as a sommelier at Spiaggia.

Dustin has been studying with the Court of Master Sommeliers since 2015 and will attempt to earn his MS Diploma at the end of 2020. He competed in the ASI World’s Best Sommelier competition in 2019, representing the United States amongst 63 nations present. In his spare time, he enjoys exploring wine-producing regions of the world, cooking, dad jokes, and hanging out with his little black cat Pearl

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Jesse Young

Sales - Wine Specialist

Jesse is a Taurus and like all Tauruses, he loves food and wine. His first job at the ripe age of 15 was washing dishes for a fish n’ chips place on a boat docked on the Oregon coast.The beginning of a long stint in hospitality. Having held every front of house position from host to manager in some of Chicago’s most celebrated restaurants Jesse loves pairing great food with great wine.

Some of his most memorable experiences have been had while sitting around a table with friends and strangers enjoying a beautiful bottle(s). When Jesse isn’t driving around the city with a bag full of wine you can find him in a darkened room making weirdo performance art.


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Nicole Soto

Director of Operations

While attending Columbia College Chicago Nicole was the Special Events Coordinator for PRSSA (Public Relations Student Society of America) and was a Promotions Intern for WGN Radio. In these roles she was heavily involved with event planning and fundraising.

Upon graduating Nicole was hired as a Production Coordinator at Momentum Worldwide. (William Grant porIolio) where she assisted PorIolio Marketing Managers across the US. Following that role she was hired as the 1st Region Coordinator for Strategic Group working with the luxury brands in the Moët Hennessy porIolio and overseeing 20+ specialists in the market.

Nicole loves to celebrate her Greek heritage via food, wine and travel with her family. Understanding her culture is very important to her. She recently completed her WSET level 2.

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Beth Martin

Accountant

Beth obtained her Bachelor of Science in Business Administration with a major in Accounting from Marquette University. While working in various accounting roles at Motorola, she obtained her MBA with an emphasis in Finance from DePaul University. Although Beth’s career involves working with numbers, she enjoys fine wine and dining in her free time. The wine industry was the perfect fit for Beth to apply her accounting skills. Annual trips to Napa are always something she looks forward to.


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We see our wines as beautiful expressions of place and varietal and we cannot think of a better way to celebrate life.
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