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Chardonnay

Learn about Chardonnay — taste profile, popular regions and more ...

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One of the most popular and versatile white wine grapes, Chardonnay offers a wide range of flavors and styles depending on where it is grown and how it is made. While practically every country in the wine producing world grows it, Chardonnay from its Burgundian homeland produces some of the most remarkable and longest lived examples. As far as cellar potential, white Burgundy rivals the world’s other age-worthy whites like Riesling or botrytized Semillon. California is Chardonnay’s second most important home, where both oaky, buttery styles and leaner, European-inspired wines enjoy great popularity. Oregon, Australia and South America are also significant producers of Chardonnay.

Tasting Notes for Chardonnay

Chardonnay is a dry, white wine. When Chardonnay grapes are planted on cool sites, the resulting wine's flavors tend towards grapefruit, lemon zest, green apple, celery leaf and wet flint, while warmer locations coax out richer, more tropical flavors of melon, peach and pineapple. Oak can add notes of vanilla, coconut and spice, while malolactic fermentation imparts a soft and creamy texture.

Perfect Food Pairings for Chardonnay

Chardonnay is as versatile at the table as it is in the vineyard. The crisp, clean, Chablis-like styles go well with flaky white fish with herbs, scallops, turkey breast and soft cheeses. Richer Chardonnays marry well with lobster, crab, salmon, roasted chicken and creamy sauces.

Sommelier Secrets for Chardonnay

Since the 1980s, big, oaky, buttery Chardonnays from California have enjoyed explosive popularity. More recently, the pendulum has swung in the opposite direction, towards a clean, crisp style that rarely utilizes new oak. The Burgundian subregion of Chablis, while typically using older oak barrels, produces a similar bright and acid-driven style. Anyone who doesn't like oaky Chardonnay would likely enjoy this lighter style.

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  • Marcassin Three Sisters Vineyard Chardonnay 2008 Front Label
    Marcassin Three Sisters Vineyard Chardonnay 2008
    Chardonnay from Sonoma Coast, Sonoma County, California
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  • Aubert Reuling Vineyard Chardonnay 2008 Front Label
    Aubert Reuling Vineyard Chardonnay 2008
    Chardonnay from Sonoma Coast, Sonoma County, California
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  • Aubert Ritchie Vineyard Chardonnay 2008 Front Label
    Aubert Ritchie Vineyard Chardonnay 2008
    Chardonnay from Sonoma Coast, Sonoma County, California
    • WS96
    • RP95
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  • Leeuwin Estate Art Series Chardonnay 2008 Front Label
    Leeuwin Estate Art Series Chardonnay 2008
    Chardonnay from Margaret River, Western Australia, Australia
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    • RP93
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  • Ramey Hyde Vineyard Chardonnay 2008 Front Label
    Ramey Hyde Vineyard Chardonnay 2008
    Chardonnay from Carneros, California
    • RP93
    • CG90
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  • Kongsgaard The Judge Chardonnay 2008 Front Label
    Kongsgaard The Judge Chardonnay 2008
    Chardonnay from Napa Valley, California
    • RP97
    • WS92
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  • Beringer Private Reserve Chardonnay 2008 Front Label
    Beringer Private Reserve Chardonnay 2008
    Chardonnay from Napa Valley, California
    • RP94
    • WS92
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  • Kumeu River Mate's Vineyard Chardonnay 2008 Front Label
    Kumeu River Mate's Vineyard Chardonnay 2008
    Chardonnay from New Zealand
    • RP96
    • WE92
    • WS90
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  • William Fevre Chablis Fourchaume Premier Cru (375ML half-bottle) 2008 Front Label
    William Fevre Chablis Fourchaume Premier Cru (375ML half-bottle) 2008
    Chardonnay from Burgundy, France
    • WE93
    • RP91
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  • Christian Moreau Chablis Les Clos Grand Cru 2008 Front Label
    Christian Moreau Chablis Les Clos Grand Cru 2008
    Chardonnay from Chablis, Burgundy, France
    • WS95
    • RP94
    • BH93
    • WE93
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  • Williams Selyem Hawk Hill Vineyard Chardonnay 2008 Front Label
    Williams Selyem Hawk Hill Vineyard Chardonnay 2008
    Chardonnay from Russian River, Sonoma County, California
    • RP92
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  • Joseph Drouhin Chablis Vaudesir 2008 Front Label
    Joseph Drouhin Chablis Vaudesir 2008
    Chardonnay from Burgundy, France
    • WE93
    • WS92
    • W&S91
    • RP90
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  • Christian Moreau Chablis Vaudesir Grand Cru 2008 Front Label
    Christian Moreau Chablis Vaudesir Grand Cru 2008
    Chardonnay from Chablis, Burgundy, France
    • WS95
    • WE93
    • RP91
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  • Williams Selyem Allen Vineyard Chardonnay 2008 Front Label
    Williams Selyem Allen Vineyard Chardonnay 2008
    Chardonnay from Russian River, Sonoma County, California
    • WE95
    • RP93
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  • Kistler Vineyards Hyde Vineyard Chardonnay 2008 Front Label
    Kistler Vineyards Hyde Vineyard Chardonnay 2008
    Chardonnay from Carneros, California
    • RP96
    • WS93
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  • Aubert Larry Hyde & Sons Vineyard Chardonnay 2008 Front Label
    Aubert Larry Hyde & Sons Vineyard Chardonnay 2008
    Chardonnay from Carneros, California
    • RP96
    • WS93
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  • Pahlmeyer Napa Valley Chardonnay 2008 Front Label
    Pahlmeyer Napa Valley Chardonnay 2008
    Chardonnay from Napa Valley, California
    • RP95
    • WS93
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  • Peter Michael Belle Cote Chardonnay 2008 Front Label
    Peter Michael Belle Cote Chardonnay 2008
    Chardonnay from Knights Valley, Sonoma County, California
    • RP95
    • WS94
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  • Ramey Ritchie Vineyard Chardonnay 2008 Front Label
    Ramey Ritchie Vineyard Chardonnay 2008
    Chardonnay from Russian River, Sonoma County, California
    • WS93
    • RP92
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  • Kistler Vineyards Cuvee Cathleen Chardonnay 2008 Front Label
    Kistler Vineyards Cuvee Cathleen Chardonnay 2008
    Chardonnay from Sonoma Mountain, Sonoma Valley, Sonoma County, California
    • RP95
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  • Peter Michael La Carriere Chardonnay 2008 Front Label
    Peter Michael La Carriere Chardonnay 2008
    Chardonnay from Sonoma County, California
    • RP96
    • WS93
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  • Bonneau du Martray Corton Charlemagne Grand Cru 2008 Front Label
    Bonneau du Martray Corton Charlemagne Grand Cru 2008
    Chardonnay from Burgundy, France
    • RP94
    • WS92
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  • Kongsgaard Chardonnay 2008 Front Label
    Kongsgaard Chardonnay 2008
    Chardonnay from Napa Valley, California
    • RP94
    • WS92
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  • Peter Michael Ma Belle Fille Chardonnay 2008 Front Label
    Peter Michael Ma Belle Fille Chardonnay 2008
    Chardonnay from Knights Valley, Sonoma County, California
    • RP97
    • WS97
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  • Aubert Lauren Vineyard Chardonnay 2008 Front Label
    Aubert Lauren Vineyard Chardonnay 2008
    Chardonnay from Sonoma Coast, Sonoma County, California
    • RP97
    • WS93
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