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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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  • Bernardus Soberanes Vineyard Chardonnay 2011 Front Label
    Bernardus Soberanes Vineyard Chardonnay 2011
    Chardonnay from Santa Lucia Highlands, Monterey, Central Coast, California
    • WE92
    • RP92
    3.3 5 Ratings
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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
    0.0 0 Ratings
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    309 97
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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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  • Kistler Vineyards Cuvee Cathleen Chardonnay 2011 Front Label
    Kistler Vineyards Cuvee Cathleen Chardonnay 2011
    Chardonnay from Sonoma County, California
    • RP95
    0.0 0 Ratings
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  • HdV Hyde Vineyard Chardonnay 2011 Front Label
    HdV Hyde Vineyard Chardonnay 2011
    Chardonnay from Carneros, California
    • JS93
    • RP93
    • WE90
    0.0 0 Ratings
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  • Chateau Montelena Napa Valley Chardonnay 2011 Front Label
    Chateau Montelena Napa Valley Chardonnay 2011
    Chardonnay from Napa Valley, California
    • RP93
    3.8 8 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $49.99
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  • Domaine Matrot Bourgogne Chardonnay 2011 Front Label
    Domaine Matrot Bourgogne Chardonnay 2011
    Chardonnay from Burgundy, France
    • RP90
    0.0 0 Ratings
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  • Calera Central Coast Chardonnay 2011 Front Label
    Calera Central Coast Chardonnay 2011
    Chardonnay from Central Coast, California
    • RP90
    0.0 0 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $21.99
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  • Beringer Private Reserve Chardonnay 2011 Front Label
    Beringer Private Reserve Chardonnay 2011
    Chardonnay from Napa Valley, California
    • RP95
    • WS92
    • WW92
    0.0 0 Ratings
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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
    0.0 0 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $139.97
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  • Newton Unfiltered Chardonnay 2011 Front Label
    Newton Unfiltered Chardonnay 2011
    Chardonnay from Napa Valley, California
    • RP93
    0.0 0 Ratings
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  • Sandhi Rita's Crown Chardonnay 2011 Front Label
    Sandhi Rita's Crown Chardonnay 2011
    Chardonnay from Sta. Rita Hills, Santa Barbara, Central Coast, California
    • RP94
    0.0 0 Ratings
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  • Giant Steps Arthurs Creek Chardonnay 2011 Front Label
    Giant Steps Arthurs Creek Chardonnay 2011
    Chardonnay from Yarra Valley, Victoria, Australia
    • WS93
    • RP92
    0.0 0 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $39.99
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    44 99
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  • Giant Steps Tarraford Vineyard Chardonnay 2011 Front Label
    Giant Steps Tarraford Vineyard Chardonnay 2011
    Chardonnay from Yarra Valley, Victoria, Australia
    • WS91
    • RP90
    0.0 0 Ratings
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  • DeLoach O.F.S. Chardonnay 2011 Front Label
    DeLoach O.F.S. Chardonnay 2011
    Chardonnay from Russian River, Sonoma County, California
    • RP90
    0.0 0 Ratings
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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
    0.0 0 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $119.99
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  • Tyler Winery Sanford and Benedict Chardonnay 2011 Front Label
    Tyler Winery Sanford and Benedict Chardonnay 2011
    Chardonnay from Sta. Rita Hills, Santa Barbara, Central Coast, California
    • RP93
    0.0 0 Ratings
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    55
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  • Rochioli River Block Chardonnay 2011 Front Label
    Rochioli River Block Chardonnay 2011
    Chardonnay from Russian River, Sonoma County, California
    • RP92
    0.0 0 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $125.00
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  • Layer Cake Chardonnay 2011 Front Label
    Layer Cake Chardonnay 2011
    Chardonnay from Central Coast, California
    • RP88
    0.0 0 Ratings
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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
    0.0 0 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $219.00
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  • Chateau Fuisse Pouilly-Fuisse Vieilles Vignes 2011 Front Label
    Chateau Fuisse Pouilly-Fuisse Vieilles Vignes 2011
    Chardonnay from Burgundy, France
    • WE94
    • RP94
    • BH93
    • WS92
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    Currently Unavailable $54.99
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    63
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  • Etude Carneros Chardonnay 2011 Front Label
    Etude Carneros Chardonnay 2011
    Chardonnay from Carneros, California
    • W&S91
    • RP90
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  • Domaine Louis Michel et Fils Chablis Montee de Tonnerre Premier Cru 2011 Front Label
    Domaine Louis Michel et Fils Chablis Montee de Tonnerre Premier Cru 2011
    Chardonnay from Chablis, Burgundy, France
    • BH94
    • RP93
    0.0 0 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $36.00
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    36
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  • Domaine Saumaize-Michelin Pouilly-Fuisse Vignes Blanches 2011 Front Label
    Domaine Saumaize-Michelin Pouilly-Fuisse Vignes Blanches 2011
    Chardonnay from Pouilly-Fuisse, Maconnais, Burgundy, France
    • RP90
    0.0 0 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $44.99
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    44 99
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  • Bernardus Sierra Mar Vineyard Chardonnay 2011 Front Label
    Bernardus Sierra Mar Vineyard Chardonnay 2011
    Chardonnay from Santa Lucia Highlands, Monterey, Central Coast, California
    • WE92
    • RP92
    0.0 0 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $39.99
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    39 99
    39 99
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