Mount Eden Estate Chardonnay 1985

Tasting Notes

Release Date: Fall 1987

By now the excellence of the '85 vintage in California is well known. The growing season was long and cool, ideal for full flavor development of Chardonnay. At harvest moderate temperatures continued which allowed us to obtain maximum maturity through selective pickings of our small mountain vineyards.

The '85 Estate Chardonnay is a very concentrated wine with a youthful vitality that promises great development in the bottle. Produced in our usual manner of new Burgundy barrel fermentation and complete malolactic conversions, the wine displays the typical lemon-anise flavors that his Chardonnay is known for. The combination of its strength, flavor and firm acidity bodes well of a least 5 to 7 years of cellaring.




Tech Notes

The grapes were picked at 23.6° brix, with a pH of 3.49, and 9.0 grams per liter titratable acidity. The finished wine has a pH of 3.51, titratable acidity of 7.3 grams per liter, and 13% alcohol.


88 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar - July/Aug 1998

Initially reticent nose opened to reveal notes of apple, pineapple, minerals and spicy oak; a faint bottle stink dissipated with aeration. Minerally, firm and rather high in acid; not especially pliant or sweet in the middle palate. Patterson describes this wine as “brittle.” The acidity is rather obtrusive on the finish, which features a note of licorice. From a long, cool growing season.

The Underground Wine Journal  - September 1987

In writing about Mount Eden 1984 “Estate Bottled, Santa Cruz Mountains” Chardonnay last year (Vol. VIII #3), we said, ‘Boy, is this winery on a roll with Chardonnay! For each of the last four years an outstanding Chardonnay has been made each year. We know of no other California Chardonnay that is as consistently outstanding as Mount Eden…’ And ho hum. This 1985 is just another outstanding Chardonnay from California’s premium Chardonnay producer! Light yellow gold in color, it has a lovely perfumed nose with hints of spice, tropical fruit, citrus and vanilla. Well-structured with good acidity, lots of fruit showing, a spicy nuance with hints of citrus, it is long on the palate with a lingering finish. With 3-5 years additional age, this wine should really begin to show its stuff. Patience. Patience. Patience. Our experience with this wine is that it is one of only a handful of California Chardonnays that benefits from extended bottle age. And as good as it is right now, it! will be better with time. 18 Outstanding

Rating Scale for The Underground Wine Journal:

18-20 Outstanding

15-17 Very good

12-14 Good

Under 12 Below Average