Richard Olsen-Harbich has worked in the Long Island wine industry since 1981 and is a leader in establishing regional identity and vinification techniques for the region. After graduating from Cornell University in 1983, he worked to establish Long Island’s second commercial winery in Bridgehampton, where he was among the first to market Long Island wines to New York City. Over the past 30 years he has assisted in implementing pioneering techniques for Long Island vineyards while also consulting for many wineries in the eastern United States. He is the author of all three federally recognized Long Island American Viticultural Areas (AVAs) and in 1996, developed the first Bordeaux/Long Island consultation partnership with M. Paul Pontallier of Chateau Margaux. Since 1995 he has been on the advisory board for the Cornell University’s Wine Grape Research program based in Riverhead, N.Y. In 2004 he helped found the Long Island Merlot Alliance – the first wine quality alliance on Long Island. Today as winemaker at Bedell Cellars, his work is dedicated to producing delicious hand-crafted wines through the exploration and identification of local terroir, the use of sustainable and natural winemaking techniques and perfecting the fine art of blending.
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