Washington State Merlot 1986: Drink now
An unexciting vintage with few wines of any merit
This was a much cooler year than the fine red wine vintages of 1989, 1983 and 1985. Vintners categorize this one as the best Chardonnay year in Washington state in the 1980’s. The growing season was noted for its long hangtime due to the cooler summer weather. Though cool, the weather remained very dry right up until a late September harvest. A few rain showers slowed picking, but the whites were in before the rain.
Most of the reds were on the light, elegant side, with fresh fruit character but not much staying power.
See best producers
Hogue Reserve, Chateau Ste. Michelle, Leonetti, Arbor Crest, Hyatt, Latah Creek.