Wine Buyer and Event Planner
Barbara’s first love was art. However, at age 19 she discovered her passion for food and wine. With her parents’ blessing and assistance, at that age she began her serious studies of wine, always with an eye on the artistry of food. With a degree in fine art and a career in contemporary arts in L.A., Barbara chose to pursue professional study in both wine and culinary fields after moving back east.
Ms. Bjorn was awarded certification from the Sommelier Society of America (Wine Captain), Peter Kump’s NY Cooking School, and the Court of Master Sommeliers (Levels I and II).
Over the course of 20 years, Barbara has successfully managed kitchens and wine stores in Cleveland, OH and Nevada County, CA, accompanied by extensive travel throughout wine regions in the U.S. and Europe. After relocating to Santa Fe, she now oversees the wine inventory at Susan’s Fine Wine and Spirits.
Owner, Special Orders and Special Events Coordinator
Prabha, one of the owners, has an extensive corporate business background working in marketing and customer service. Although initially a “silent partner” living in the San Francisco Bay Area, she has now taken a critical role in the daily business of the store.
Prabha oversees our Special Orders, working with customers who have special requests, and with our vendors to acquire for our customers those unique products they want that are not normally available in the store. In that role, she also coordinates our outside events sales, working with caterers and individuals planning parties, weddings and other events.
Nirmala Ganapathy, one of the owners of the store, has an extensive background in business and consumer products. Nirmala is responsible for the overall operations of the store, although she prefers to leave many of the day-to-day activities to the store’s many capable employees, instead taking more of a behind-the-scenes approach.
Her insatiable thirst for knowledge has led her to become quite knowledgeable about all the store’s products and she’s as comfortable helping a customer select an inexpensive bottle of whiskey as an exquisite Cabernet Sauvignon.