Mount Eden Estate Chardonnay 2016

Tasting Notes

Release Date: Fall 2019

We always emphasize longevity when talking about our Estate Chardonnays. Mount Eden’s wine “Library” goes back to the inaugural 1972 vintage—the first vintage as Mount Eden Vineyards when the partners at the time took over from our founder, Martin Ray. There have been many surprisingly long-lived chardonnay vintages from this mountaintop: 1973, 1976, 1982, 1984, 1987, and more. So, from experience, we know our vines can deliver.

The signature here is elegance and class: A small crop of 1.5 tons per acre aided in this result. Totally barrel fermented in French Burgundian Oak, this Chardonnay is aged in our cave for ten months on the lees and lightly filtered before bottling.

Delicate yet persistent aromas of citrus fruit and honeysuckle combine with an “old world” touch of earth. On the palate, the flavors are expansive with energetic and tense citrus fruit and minerality. This 2016 is reminiscent of the 2012 with its classic restraint yet with a deep core of acid-laden fruit.

Expect full development by 2022 and a long life thereafter.



Tech Notes

Yield: 1.5 tons per acre

Harvest: August 19th-30th

Numbers @ Harvest: 22.5° Brix, 3.30 pH, 8.4 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 2017

Alcohol: 13.5%


94 points Wine Enthusiast Magazine - October 2019

The nose on this bottling blends savory depth with floral lightness, combining sandalwood, seared Meyer lemon peels, butterscotch, hot sandstone and flashes of honeysuckle on the nose. Sea salt and nectarine lead toward marshmallow and wood in the finish, wrapped in a structure that’s firm but seamless. —M.K.

93 points Antonio Galloni presents Vinous - October 31, 2019

The 2016 Chardonnay is a very pretty wine. Tangerine peel, tropical overtones, mint and butter notes give the 2016 a decidedly extroverted feel in terms of its flavor profile, and yet the wine remains a bit compact in its overall feel. In 2016, the fruit was brought in entirely in August, which is historically on the early side. The 2016 will drink nicely with minimal cellaring, although time in bottle should help the mid-palate flesh out a bit more.

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

The 2016 Chardonnay Estate opens with red pear and apple, spring honey, hay and fresh almonds with hints of orange blossom, lemon pith, stone, toast and white peaches. Medium-bodies with an intense fruit core, it offers lovely earthy/savory hints, with juicy acidity and a long, mineral-tinged finish. —E. B.

92 points Wine & Spirits Magazine - October 2019

Classicaly austere in a Santa-Cruz-Mountains-Chardonnay-grown-at-2,000-feet sort of way, this is Jeffrey Petterson’s take on some legendary vines. The Mount Eden vineyard features generations of plants selected by him, by Martin Ray, who came before hom, and by Paul Masson, who planted the original material from Burgundy at his La Cresta Vineyard in Saratoga. The oak come first, in a toasted-sesame scent that moves toward grilled veal. Then yellow scents of roses, chamomile and lemon come u, the flavors lasting with smoky, earthy pallor. This should age with grace. (1,176 cases)—J.G.