Richard Mendelson

  • Director, Wine Law and Policy Program
    Senior Research Fellow, Berkeley Center for Law & Technology
  • Tel: 707-252-7122
  • 1455 First Street, Suite 301 Napa, CA 94559

Richard Mendelson ia an attorney with the law firm of Dickenson, Peatman & Fogarty and is an internationally-recognized expert on vineyard and wine law and related land use, intellectual property, business and administrative law issues. Over the past two decades, Richard has handled legal matters involving almost every aspect of the wine business, including liquor licensing, environmental challenges to vineyard development, grape purchase agreements, winery use permits, representation of winery clients before the California Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control and federal Alcohol & Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau, state and federal label approvals, distributor appointments and terminations, and import-export contracts. Richard’s background in the wine industry began as a graduate student at Magdalen College, Oxford which houses many of Europe’s largest wine cellars.

Mendelson resides in Napa, California, and owns a small vineyard, producing three wines under the Mendelson label. He is a Lecturer in Wine Law at UC Berkeley, School of Law, where he directs the Program on Wine Law and Policy. He also lectures on a variety of vineyard and wine law topics at UC Davis Graduate School of Management and as part of the University of Aix-Marseille and the University of Bordeaux. He is the author of From Demon to Darling: A Legal History of Wine in America (UC Press 2009) and Wine in America: Law and Policy (Aspen Publishers 2011).


B.A., Harvard University (1975)
M.A., Oxford University (1977)
J.D., Stanford Law School (1982)