Learn about Chardonnay — taste profile, popular regions and more ...
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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Toasted Head Chardonnay 1999Chardonnay from California
Jacques et Francois Lurton Pays dOc Chardonnay 1999Chardonnay from Pays d’Oc, South of France, France
Chateau Ste. Michelle Indian Wells Vineyard Chardonnay 1999Chardonnay from Columbia Valley, Washington
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Terrale Chardonnay 1999Chardonnay from Italy
Baileyana Firepeak Chardonnay 1999Chardonnay from Central Coast, California
Beringer Private Reserve Chardonnay 1999Chardonnay from Napa Valley, California
Arrowood Reserve Speciale Chardonnay 1999Chardonnay from Sonoma County, California
DeLoach O.F.S. Chardonnay 1999Chardonnay from Sonoma County, California
Geyser Peak Chardonnay 1999Chardonnay from Sonoma County, California
Vine Cliff Chardonnay 1999Chardonnay from Napa Valley, California
Dom. St. George STG Chalk Hill Chardonnay 1999Chardonnay from Chalk Hill, Sonoma County, California
Clos Du Val Carneros Chardonnay (375ML half-bottle) 1999Chardonnay from Carneros, California
EOS Reserve Chardonnay 1999Chardonnay from Central Coast, California
Beringer Founders Estate Chardonnay 1999Chardonnay from California
Le Bonheur Chardonnay 1999Chardonnay from South Africa
DeLoach California Chardonnay 1999Chardonnay from California
Wolffer Estate Chardonnay The Hamptons Long Island La Ferme Marti 1999Chardonnay from New York, Other U.S.
Louis Latour Meursault Blanc 1999Chardonnay from Meursault, Cote de Beaune, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
Sterling Chardonnay (half-bottle) 1999Chardonnay from North Coast, California
Antonin Rodet Bourgogne Blanc Chardonnay 1999Chardonnay from Burgundy, France
Rabbit Ridge CA Barrel Cuvee Chardonnay 1999Chardonnay from California
Covey Run Chardonnay 1999Chardonnay from Columbia Valley, Washington
RH Phillips Chardonnay 1999Chardonnay from California
Vina Tarapaca Chardonnay Riserva 1999Chardonnay from Chile