Rich Arnold is one of two Winemakers for Robert Mondavi Winery, heading the production of the white wines which includes Chardonnay, Fumé Blanc, and Moscato d’Oro. As a member of the winemaking team for over 30 years, Rich has been extensively involved in both wine production and research.
Rich is a member of the Opus One Production Consulting Group (PCG) and serves as a liaison between Robert Mondavi Winery and Opus One. The PCG meets at Opus One after harvest to provide individual wine component assessment and blending advice to the Winemaker in conjunction with preparation of the Opus One blend.
As Research Manager from 1979–1992, and 1999–2003, he conducted the winery’s highly regarded research program, dedicated to the constant improvement of the quality of grapes grown in the vineyards and the wines made at Robert Mondavi Winery. From 1993–1999, he served as Assistant Winemaker for the Chardonnay winemaking program. Throughout his tenure, Rich has also collaborated with the Zinfandel and Cabernet Sauvignon winemaking programs.
Rich graduated from the University of California, Davis, with both a Bachelor of Science degree in fermentation science and Master’s degree in food science with a sensory science specialty. Prior to joining Robert Mondavi Winery in 1974, he worked at the University of California, Davis, and was later part of a sensory group, headed by UCD Professor Ann Noble, that developed the original Wine Aroma Wheel. His scientific background and extensive winemaking experience provide the expertise for his innovative research at Robert Mondavi Winery.
Rich is a member of the American Society for Enology and Viticulture, and has presented research papers on the effects of leaf removal on Sauvignon Blanc vines (1985), effects of vine spacing (1999) and winemaking techniques to improve Pinot Noir (2004) at their conferences. He has served on the board of the Napa Valley Wine Technical Group and has been on the review board for the American Vineyard Foundation.