Richard has worked with the same winemaker, Charles Hendricks, since the inception of the Mendelson brand in 1994. Charles is a graduate of UC Davis School of Viticultue and Enology. In the cellar, Charles is a minimalist. When it comes to blending and finishing wines, his artistry is unparalleled. Along with Richard, Charles experimented with and perfected the assemblage of Mendelson dessert wines, dosing in the pot still brandy during fermentation to produce a seamless wine that can be enjoyed in its youth as well as age gracefully. This style of winemaking is not the usual way of making fortified dessert wines. Usually, the spirit is added in one fell swoop, to kill off the yeast and stop fermentation, which disrupts the wine’s balance and harmony for a very long time. Charles, Richard and Marilyn share a passion for Pinot Noir. Charles describes the varietal’s “approachable, fruit-forward, fleshy (sometimes even a little dirty) self.” Charles coaxes that self to perfection beginning in the vineyard where he carefully selects Pinot Noir clones to achieve the varietal’s full expression.