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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 Marcassin Vineyard Chardonnay 2011 Front Label
    Marcassin Marcassin Vineyard Chardonnay 2011
    Chardonnay from Sonoma Coast, Sonoma County, California
    • RP97
    • WS93
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  • Kosta Browne One Sixteen Chardonnay 2011 Front Label
    Kosta Browne One Sixteen Chardonnay 2011
    Chardonnay from Russian River, Sonoma County, California
    • WS90
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    Currently Unavailable $129.00
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  • Kistler Vineyards Trenton Roadhouse Chardonnay (1.5 Liter Magnum) 2011 Front Label
    Kistler Vineyards Trenton Roadhouse Chardonnay (1.5 Liter Magnum) 2011
    Chardonnay from Sonoma County, California
    • RP91
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    309 97
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  • Aubert Napa Valley Chardonnay 2011 Front Label
    Aubert Napa Valley Chardonnay 2011
    Chardonnay from Napa Valley, California
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      Currently Unavailable $99.00
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    • Kistler Vineyards Sonoma Mountain Chardonnay 2011 Front Label
      Kistler Vineyards Sonoma Mountain Chardonnay 2011
      Chardonnay from Sonoma Mountain, Sonoma Valley, Sonoma County, California
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        99
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      • Pierre-Yves Colin-Morey St-Aubin La Chateniere 2011 Front Label
        Pierre-Yves Colin-Morey St-Aubin La Chateniere 2011
        Chardonnay from Burgundy, France
        • WS92
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        47 99
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      • Aubert Lauren Vineyard Chardonnay 2011 Front Label
        Aubert Lauren Vineyard Chardonnay 2011
        Chardonnay from Sonoma County, California
        • WS92
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        149
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      • Kistler Vineyards Cuvee Cathleen Chardonnay 2011 Front Label
        Kistler Vineyards Cuvee Cathleen Chardonnay 2011
        Chardonnay from Sonoma County, California
        • RP95
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        229 97
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      • Aubert UV-SL Vineyard Chardonnay 2011 Front Label
        Aubert UV-SL Vineyard Chardonnay 2011
        Chardonnay from Sonoma County, California
        • WS93
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        Currently Unavailable $139.00
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        139
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      • Palmaz Amalia Chardonnay 2011 Front Label
        Palmaz Amalia Chardonnay 2011
        Chardonnay from Napa Valley, California
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        • Aubert Ritchie Vineyard Chardonnay 2011 Front Label
          Aubert Ritchie Vineyard Chardonnay 2011
          Chardonnay from Sonoma Coast, Sonoma County, California
          • WS93
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          139
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        • Williams Selyem Allen Vineyard Chardonnay 2011 Front Label
          Williams Selyem Allen Vineyard Chardonnay 2011
          Chardonnay from Russian River, Sonoma County, California
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            Currently Unavailable $125.00
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          • Aubert CIX Vineyard Chardonnay 2011 Front Label
            Aubert CIX Vineyard Chardonnay 2011
            Chardonnay from Sonoma Coast, Sonoma County, California
            • JS95
            • WS92
            • RP91
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            139
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          • Williams Selyem Unoaked Chardonnay 2011 Front Label
            Williams Selyem Unoaked Chardonnay 2011
            Chardonnay from Russian River, Sonoma County, California
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            • Domaine de la Vougeraie Cote de Beaune Les Pierres Blanches Blanc 2011 Front Label
              Domaine de la Vougeraie Cote de Beaune Les Pierres Blanches Blanc 2011
              Chardonnay from Cote de Beaune, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
              • W&S90
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              55
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            • Ramey Ritchie Vineyard Chardonnay 2011 Front Label
              Ramey Ritchie Vineyard Chardonnay 2011
              Chardonnay from Russian River, Sonoma County, California
              • RP92
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              66 99
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            • Domaine Jean-Marc Morey Chassagne Montrachet Premier Cru Les Caillerets 2011 Front Label
              Domaine Jean-Marc Morey Chassagne Montrachet Premier Cru Les Caillerets 2011
              Chardonnay from Chassagne-Montrachet, Cote de Beaune, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
              • RP93
              • BH91
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              119 99
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            • Kistler Vineyards McCrea Chardonnay 2011 Front Label
              Kistler Vineyards McCrea Chardonnay 2011
              Chardonnay from Sonoma Mountain, Sonoma Valley, Sonoma County, California
              • RP93
              • WS91
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              139 97
              139 97
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            • Aubert Eastside Russian River Chardonnay 2011 Front Label
              Aubert Eastside Russian River Chardonnay 2011
              Chardonnay from Russian River, Sonoma County, California
              • WS95
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              Currently Unavailable $139.00
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              139
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            • Rochioli River Block Chardonnay 2011 Front Label
              Rochioli River Block Chardonnay 2011
              Chardonnay from Russian River, Sonoma County, California
              • RP92
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              Currently Unavailable $125.00
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              125
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            • Pierre-Yves Colin-Morey Saint-Aubin Les Champlots 2011  Front Label
              Pierre-Yves Colin-Morey Saint-Aubin Les Champlots 2011
              Chardonnay from Cote de Beaune, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
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              • Bouchard Pere & Fils Corton-Charlemagne Grand Cru 2011 Front Label
                Bouchard Pere & Fils Corton-Charlemagne Grand Cru 2011
                Chardonnay from Cote de Beaune, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
                • WE95
                • BH93
                • W&S92
                • WS91
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                159 99
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              • Rochioli South River Vineyard Chardonnay 2011 Front Label
                Rochioli South River Vineyard Chardonnay 2011
                Chardonnay from Russian River, Sonoma County, California
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                • Domaine des Comtes Lafon Meursault Charmes 2011 Front Label
                  Domaine des Comtes Lafon Meursault Charmes 2011
                  Chardonnay from Meursault, Cote de Beaune, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
                  • RP93
                  • BH93
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                  Currently Unavailable $219.00
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                  219
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                • Jacques Prieur Puligny Montrachet Les Combettes Premier Cru 2011 Front Label
                  Jacques Prieur Puligny Montrachet Les Combettes Premier Cru 2011
                  Chardonnay from Puligny-Montrachet, Cote de Beaune, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
                  • WS93
                  • BH93
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                  Currently Unavailable $139.99
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                  170
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