Mount Eden Estate Chardonnay 2015

Tasting Notes

Release Date: Fall 2018

The 2015 Estate Chardonnay grapes developed during the fourth year of our recent drought cycle, but remarkably, the wine does not reflect it. After the previous two early August harvests caught us by surprise, we were ready this time. Knowing when to start picking—at just the right moment—is one of the hardest tasks a winemaker/ grapegrower has, yet it is the most fundamental. That decision sets the style and the delicate art of a wine. No other event in the year has this level of significance.

The thing that sets Mount Eden apart from most Chardonnay producers, outside of Burgundy, is its ageability. It is the singular aspect that separates good from great. The best wines in the world share this one attribute: longevity. Good acidity also creates a wine that is slow to show its qualities which is why we release late.

Our Chardonnay spends ten months in the barrel sur-lie and a full two years in bottle before release. The reticence that it displays early on is encouraging, along with knowing that the richness and complexity will emerge with time. This Chardonnay exhibits fresh acidity, minerality and leesy complexity. Expect full development by 2022.



Tech Notes

Yield: 2.0 tons per acre

Harvest: August 14th-18th

Numbers @ Harvest: 23.0° Brix, 3.30 pH, 8.6 grams acidity

Barrel Regimen: French Oak 50% new, 50% 1 year; 100% Barrel Fermented; 100% Malolactic; aged 11 months on the sur-lie

Bottling: July 2016

Alcohol: 13.5%


95 points - February 14, 2019

The 2015 Chardonnay Estate comes all from the estate vineyard and mostly from a block of vines planted in 1990. Aged in 50% new oak, it’s another brilliant Chardonnay from Jeffrey Patterson that has a rich, concentrated, classic style as well as ample honeyed minerality, orchard fruits, and hints of brioche and toasted spice. Pure, medium to full-bodied and impeccably balanced, you can enjoy bottles today or cellar for 10-15 years, if you’re so inclined.

94 points Robert Parker Jr's The Wine Advocate - February 2020, Week 1

The 2015 Chardonnay Estate opens with citrusy notes of lemon and lime peel plus petrichor, gunflint, dried hay, green melon, white peach and appealing herbal hints. Medium-bodied, it has a fantastic core of savory, peachy fruit with juicy acidity and loads of mineral notions, finishing long and lively. —E. B.

93 points Wine Enthusiast Magazine - December 2018

Cellar Selection

This classic bottling is still a baby and needs plenty of time to open. When it does, aromas of toasted hazelnuts, light oak, lemon pith and exotic apples show on the nose. The palate combines oak smoke with savory sea salt and sumptuous golden apple fruits. Drink 2019–2030. Cellar Selection. —M.K.

93 points View From the Cellar by John Gilman - July / August 2019

The 2015 Chardonnay from Mount Eden Vineyards is a lovely bottle, with a bit more ripeness than some recent vintages from Jeffrey Patterson, as it tips the scales at fourteen percent, but it is precise, pure and vibrant on both the nose and palate. At four years of age, the bouquet is really starting to blossom beautifully, offering up scents of pear, hazelnuts, a touch of acacia blossom, complex soil tones, citrus peel, vanillin oak, lavender and a topnote of orange blossoms. On the palate the wine is deep, full-bodied and very well-balanced, with an excellent core of fruit, lovely mineral drive, bright acids and a long, complex and zesty finish. With its relatively higher octane for Mount Eden, I suspect that this will not be a long distance runner of a vintage for this bottling, but for drinking over the next ten to twelve years, this is going to be a superb drink. 2019-2030+.

92 points Antonio Galloni presents Vinous - August 31, 2018

Readers will find a gorgeous wine in the 2015 Chardonnay. Open-knit and radiant, with lovely suppleness, the 2015 will also drink well early, which is unusual for this wine. Tropical fruit, hazelnut, honeysuckle and orange peel give the 2015 a decidedly exotic feel. The Mount Eden Chardonnay is typically a bit more tense in style, but the 2015 vintage yielded an unusually accessible and – dare I say – flamboyant version of this wine.

92 points Wine Spectator - October 31, 2018

Deeply hued and very rich, with notes of beeswax and light smoke to the ripe pear, apple and Marcona almond flavors. The vividly structured finish shows lots of mineral and spice components and plenty of vanillin details. Drink now through 2021. –KM

90 points Decanter - June 2019

Toasted hazelnuts and lemon sherbet, with some preserved lemon character. Rich and suave but there’s a taut quality here too—it favors tension over opulence and overt fruitiness.