Chuck Meibeyer has been practicing business, real estate, land use, and wine law in the Napa Valley since 1983. Through his role as trusted counsel to the wine industry, Chuck has helped dozens of clients establish, expand, sell, or purchase wineries or vineyards, drafted countless grape purchase contracts and vineyard lease agreements, and provided business succession planning advice.
Chuck has extensive experience representing clients subject to the regulatory requirements imposed by Napa County Winery Definition Ordinance (WDO) and the regulations imposed on wineries by the cities in the Napa Valley. He has helped numerous winery clients, both those who were grandfathered under the WDO, and those approved after the WDO’s adoption, maneuver through the requirements imposed on both categories of wineries. Chuck is also intimately familiar with the current regulatory climate contemplated by the Napa County Board of Supervisors implementation of the proposals from the Agricultural Protection Advisory Committee.
In addition to providing assistance to wine industry clients, Chuck also represents chefs, restaurants and hotels, as well as the Culinary Institute of America. He is well versed in the regulatory and business issues experienced by the hospitality industry in the Napa Valley.
Chuck has extensive experience in residential and commercial real estate sales and leases and tax-deferred exchanges, as well as the formation and counseling of partnerships, corporations and limited liability companies for clients in a wide range of industries.
Prior to joining Coblentz, Chuck was an associate at Morrison & Foerster in San Francisco, and was an associate, then partner, with Dickenson, Peatman & Fogarty, before founding his own firm, the Meibeyer Law Group, in 1989.
CULINARY INSTITUTE OF AMERICA
Chuck has handled all of the legal work for the Culinary Institute of America Greystone (CIA) since 2000. Representative matters include:
Acquisition of the former Copia: American Center for Wine, Food & the Arts, for the development of additional educational and hospitality programs at this important campus in the City of Napa. Once the CIA completes renovation of the CIA at Copia and transfers various programs and activities from the Greystone campus, the CIA at Copia campus will become a vital center for hospitality at the gateway to the Napa Valley.
On behalf of the CIA at Greystone campus, Chuck obtained approvals for a prior Master Plan that increased the student capacity from 68 students to 200 students, handled the purchase of a former convalescent hospital for additional student housing, and then completed a rezoning of that property for the development of additional housing to allow the expansion in student enrollment. Chuck is currently working with the CIA on another Master Plan that will allow the Institute to utilize areas of the Greystone campus that will become vacant when programs move to Copia to expand the educational programs for professional wine and food students. In conjunction with this Master Plan, the CIA intends to build further housing to accommodate more than 100 additional students.
DAROUISH KHALEDI WINERY
Chuck has represented Darioush Khaledi since 1997, including the acquisition of the original winery property, major expansions of the winery’s visitation and marketing plan, acquisition of numerous vineyards, acquisition of an additional winery property near Bistro Don Giovani, and the expansion of that property’s visitation and marketing program to achieve the first-ever approved Napa County marketing plan allowing winery tours and tastings to occur as late as 10:00 p.m.
FRANK FAMILY VINEYARDS (FFV)
Chuck has represented FFV as its “outside general counsel” since its formation in 1993 in all business, real estate and land use matters, including acquisition of the Hanns Kornell Winery, expansion of the winery’s production, visitation and marketing programs, and acquisition of several iconic vineyard estates, and is processing a pending use permit application for an additional 475,000 gallon winery. His representation has also included numerous transactional matters on behalf of FFV, and its founder, Rich Frank, former President of Disney Television and Paramount Studios.
V. SATTUI WINERY and CASTELLO DI AMOROSA
Since 1990, Chuck has represented Dario Sattui and his interests in these two wineries, including the acquisition of hundreds of acres of vineyard property, approval of a Major Modification authorizing the substantial expansion of tours and tastings at V. Sattui Winery, and the receipt of a Certificate of a Legal Nonconformity providing this winery the exceedingly rare opportunity to offer 80 weddings a year as a part of its marketing program, despite a contrary position by the Napa County Planning Department. Chuck has also handled numerous other real estate and business matters on behalf of these entities.
Apart from his law practice, Chuck has long been actively involved in the civic life of Napa County. Chuck has served as President (and board member) of the Napa County Mental Health Association, the Napa Valley Unified Education Foundation, the Napa Valley Unified School District Board of Trustees, the St. Helena Chamber of Commerce, the St. Helena Rotary Club and the St. Helena Rotary Foundation.
Chuck earned his J.D. from the University of California, Boalt Hall School of Law in Berkeley in 1982, where he was an Associate Editor of the Industrial Relations Law Journal. He previously attended University of California, Hastings School of Law where he was a Milton D. Green Top Ten Scholar. He received a Bachelor in General Studies degree, with distinction, from the University of Michigan in 1975.