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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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  • Peter Michael Point Rouge Chardonnay 2003  Front Label
    Peter Michael Point Rouge Chardonnay 2003
    Chardonnay from Sonoma County, California
    • RP97
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  • Peter Michael Cuvee Indigene Chardonnay 2003 Front Label
    Peter Michael Cuvee Indigene Chardonnay 2003
    Chardonnay from Knights Valley, Sonoma County, California
    • RP95
    • WS90
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  • Peter Michael Ma Belle Fille Chardonnay 2003 Front Label
    Peter Michael Ma Belle Fille Chardonnay 2003
    Chardonnay from Knights Valley, Sonoma County, California
    • RP93
    • WS92
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  • Rochioli South River Vineyard Chardonnay 2003 Front Label
    Rochioli South River Vineyard Chardonnay 2003
    Chardonnay from Russian River, Sonoma County, California
    • RP93
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  • Kistler Vineyards Vine Hill Chardonnay 2003 Front Label
    Kistler Vineyards Vine Hill Chardonnay 2003
    Chardonnay from Russian River, Sonoma County, California
    • RP98
    • WS90
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  • Kistler Vineyards Hyde Vineyard Chardonnay 2003 Front Label
    Kistler Vineyards Hyde Vineyard Chardonnay 2003
    Chardonnay from Carneros, California
    • RP94
    • WS94
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  • Rochioli River Block Chardonnay 2003 Front Label
    Rochioli River Block Chardonnay 2003
    Chardonnay from Russian River, Sonoma County, California
    • RP95
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  • Vincent Girardin Puligny-Montrachet Les Combettes Premier Cru 2003 Front Label
    Vincent Girardin Puligny-Montrachet Les Combettes Premier Cru 2003
    Chardonnay from Burgundy, France
    • RP91
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  • Newton Red Label Chardonnay 2003 Front Label
    Newton Red Label Chardonnay 2003
    Chardonnay from Napa Valley, California
    • RP89
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  • Cartlidge & Browne Chardonnay 2003 Front Label
    Cartlidge & Browne Chardonnay 2003
    Chardonnay from California
    • RP88
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  • RockBare Chardonnay 2003 Front Label
    RockBare Chardonnay 2003
    Chardonnay from McLaren Vale, South Australia, Australia
    • RP88
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  • Kendall-Jackson Vintner's Reserve Chardonnay 2003 Front Label
    Kendall-Jackson Vintner's Reserve Chardonnay 2003
    Chardonnay from Sonoma County, California
    • RP89
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  • Buckeley's Chardonnay 2003 Front Label
    Buckeley's Chardonnay 2003
    Chardonnay from Australia
    • RP87
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  • Beringer Sbragia Limited Release Chardonnay 2003 Front Label
    Beringer Sbragia Limited Release Chardonnay 2003
    Chardonnay from Napa Valley, California
    • RP92
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  • Matanzas Creek Sonoma County Chardonnay 2003 Front Label
    Matanzas Creek Sonoma County Chardonnay 2003
    Chardonnay from Sonoma County, California
    • RP89
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  • Mak Adelaide Hills Chardonnay 2003 Front Label
    Mak Adelaide Hills Chardonnay 2003
    Chardonnay from Adelaide Hills, South Australia, Australia
    • RP88
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  • Landmark Overlook Chardonnay 2003
    Chardonnay from Sonoma County, California
    • RP90
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  • Nepenthe Unwooded Chardonnay 2003 Front Label
    Nepenthe Unwooded Chardonnay 2003
    Chardonnay from Australia
    • RP91
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  • Antinori Castello della Sala Cervaro 2003 Front Label
    Antinori Castello della Sala Cervaro 2003
    Chardonnay from Umbria, Italy
    • WS90
    • RP90
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  • Neyers Carneros Chardonnay 2003
    Chardonnay from Carneros, California
    • RP92
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  • Kendall-Jackson Grand Reserve Chardonnay 2003 Front Label
    Kendall-Jackson Grand Reserve Chardonnay 2003
    Chardonnay from Sonoma County, California
    • RP90
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  • Beringer Private Reserve Chardonnay 2003 Front Label
    Beringer Private Reserve Chardonnay 2003
    Chardonnay from Napa Valley, California
    • RP90
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  • Vasse Felix Heytesbury Chardonnay 2003 Front Label
    Vasse Felix Heytesbury Chardonnay 2003
    Chardonnay from Margaret River, Western Australia, Australia
    • RP91
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  • Neyers Napa Chardonnay 2003 Front Label
    Neyers Napa Chardonnay 2003
    Chardonnay from Napa Valley, California
    • RP90
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  • Arrowood Sonoma Chardonnay 2003
    Chardonnay from Sonoma County, California
    • RP89
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