Dr. Richard Peterson, Judge
Dick Peterson is well-known in the California wine industry as an innovator, winemaker, educator, international wine judge, viticulture/enology consultant and expert witness in legal cases. After earning a BS in Chemical Technology, a MS in Food Science and a PhD in Agricultural Chemistry, he started his working life in 1958 with E. & J. Gallo Winery in Research and New Product Development. He then replaced the legendary Andre Tchelistcheff as winemaster at Beaulieu Vineyards. He is responsible for creating many well-loved American wines and brands such as Lancers Vinho Branco, Monterey Vineyard and all the original Taylor California Cellars wines. He oversaw the development of Atlas Peak Vineyards, excavating some of California’s largest wine caves.
He is a former president of The American Society for Enology & Viticulture, director of the Wine Institute, and founding member of the Society of Wine Educators and the American Institute for Wine and Food.
Among Richard Peterson’s viticultural achievements is the cultivation of the Wrotham Pinot clone of Pinot Noir, including the establishment of two Wrotham Pinot vineyards in Napa Valley and the Santa Lucia Highlands AVA, just inland from Monterey Bay on the California coast. See the Story of Wrotham Pinot on this web site. The wines made from these grapes are available on a very limited basis.