1986 Robert Mondavi "Reserve" Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon
Gorgeously fresh bouquet. Blackcurrants, oak, cocoa, buttery caramel and char. Drinking really young, firm, fresh. Very dry, balanced, not a powerful wine but elegant, harmonious. Light and pretty.
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
A strong showing for this offering from Mondavi, 1986 was a transitional year for the Mondavi philosophy of Cabernet Sauvignon winemaking. The unfiltered school of winemaking, which ended in 1974, resumed in 1987, yet had not taken full hold in 1986. Nevertheless, Mondavi had already moved away from the excessive manipulation and acidification practiced during the 1975-1985 era. The 1986 reveals a deep, ruby/garnet color with an opaque middle and vague lightening at the edge. The expressive bouquet offers up scents of jammy cassis, tobacco, and damp earth. Sweet and ripe, this full-bodied, soft, seamless, velvety-textured wine was tasting exceptionally well... A very delicious, complex, elegant Cabernet. (RP)
Has a fine structure, with firm, ripe red currant and dried berry flavors that are focused. The tannins provide a nice firm aftertaste. (Web-2007) (JL)
Reviewer Richard Jennings took a palate peek at this classic Napa Valley vintage, just a few years back: "From magnum - nearly opaque red violet color; blackberry, ripe black fruit nose; rich, ripe black fruit, cedar, blackberry, soy sauce nose; plush mouth feel (plusher than prior vintages), tart black fruit, tart berry, soy sauce, hickory palate with walnut note on finish; medium-plus finish (94.5% Cabernet Sauvignon, 4.8% Cabernet Franc, .7% Merlot; 17.5 mos. in new French oak barrels; 12.9% alcohol; alcohol shows more than in prior vintages, even though the alcohol percentage is no higher)." (RJonWine.com, 7/2011)