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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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  • Domaine Leflaive Batard-Montrachet Grand Cru 2005  Front Label
    Domaine Leflaive Batard-Montrachet Grand Cru 2005
    Chardonnay from Cote de Beaune, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
    • WS96
    • W&S96
    • V93
    • RP90
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  • Aubert Ritchie Vineyard Chardonnay (1.5 Liter Magnum) 2005  Front Label
    Aubert Ritchie Vineyard Chardonnay (1.5 Liter Magnum) 2005
    Chardonnay from Sonoma County, California
    • RP96
    • WS93
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    269 97
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  • Cambria Katherine's Vineyard Chardonnay 2005 Front Label
    Cambria Katherine's Vineyard Chardonnay 2005
    Chardonnay from Santa Maria Valley, Central Coast, California
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    • Domaine Matrot Puligny Montrachet Premier Cru Les Chalumeaux 2005 Front Label
      Domaine Matrot Puligny Montrachet Premier Cru Les Chalumeaux 2005
      Chardonnay from Puligny-Montrachet, Cote de Beaune, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
      • BH92
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      62
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    • Haywood Vintner's Select Chardonnay 2005 Front Label
      Haywood Vintner's Select Chardonnay 2005
      Chardonnay from California
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        8 79
        8 79
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      • Rutherford Ranch Chardonnay 2005 Front Label
        Rutherford Ranch Chardonnay 2005
        Chardonnay from Napa Valley, California
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          Currently Unavailable $16.29
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          16 28
          16 28
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        • Pahlmeyer Sonoma Coast Chardonnay 2005 Front Label
          Pahlmeyer Sonoma Coast Chardonnay 2005
          Chardonnay from Sonoma Coast, Sonoma County, California
          • RP94
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          70
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        • Stag's Leap Wine Cellars KARIA Chardonnay 2005 Front Label
          Stag's Leap Wine Cellars KARIA Chardonnay 2005
          Chardonnay from Napa Valley, California
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            28 99
            23 39
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          • Justin Chardonnay 2005 Front Label
            Justin Chardonnay 2005
            Chardonnay from Central Coast, California
            • WE87
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            21 99
            21 99
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          • Dog House Charlie's Chard 2005 Front Label
            Dog House Charlie's Chard 2005
            Chardonnay from California
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              12 28
              8 99
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            • Excelsior Chardonnay 2005 Front Label
              Excelsior Chardonnay 2005
              Chardonnay from South Africa
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                Currently Unavailable $12.29
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                12 28
                12 28
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              • Concha y Toro Marques de Casa Concha Chardonnay 2005 Front Label
                Concha y Toro Marques de Casa Concha Chardonnay 2005
                Chardonnay from Chile
                • RP92
                • WS91
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                22 99
                19 28
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              • Camelot Chardonnay 2005 Front Label
                Camelot Chardonnay 2005
                Chardonnay from Central Coast, California
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                  11 28
                  11 28
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                • Lincourt Chardonnay 2005 Front Label
                  Lincourt Chardonnay 2005
                  Chardonnay from Central Coast, California
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                    19 79
                    19 79
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                  • La Crema Sonoma Coast Chardonnay 2005 Front Label
                    La Crema Sonoma Coast Chardonnay 2005
                    Chardonnay from Sonoma Coast, Sonoma County, California
                      3.6 5 Ratings
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                    • Marcassin Marcassin Vineyard Chardonnay 2005  Front Label
                      Marcassin Marcassin Vineyard Chardonnay 2005
                      Chardonnay from Sonoma Coast, Sonoma County, California
                      • RP98
                      • WS91
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                    • Green Point Chardonnay 2005 Front Label
                      Green Point Chardonnay 2005
                      Chardonnay from Australia
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                      • Grgich Hills Estate Chardonnay (half-bottle) 2005 Front Label
                        Grgich Hills Estate Chardonnay (half-bottle) 2005
                        Chardonnay from Napa Valley, California
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                          25 99
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                        • Wente Riva Ranch Chardonnay 2005 Front Label
                          Wente Riva Ranch Chardonnay 2005
                          Chardonnay from Central Coast, California
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                            17 79
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                          • Marcassin Three Sisters Vineyard Chardonnay 2005 Front Label
                            Marcassin Three Sisters Vineyard Chardonnay 2005
                            Chardonnay from Sonoma Coast, Sonoma County, California
                            • RP96
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                            259
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                          • Kendall-Jackson Vintner's Reserve Chardonnay 2005 Front Label
                            Kendall-Jackson Vintner's Reserve Chardonnay 2005
                            Chardonnay from Sonoma County, California
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                              14 49
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                            • Famiglia Bianchi Chardonnay 2005 Front Label
                              Famiglia Bianchi Chardonnay 2005
                              Chardonnay from Argentina
                              • WS87
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                              14 28
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                            • Albert Bichot Chablis Grand Cru Moutonne Monopole 2005 Front Label
                              Albert Bichot Chablis Grand Cru Moutonne Monopole 2005
                              Chardonnay from Chablis, Burgundy, France
                              • WE94
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                              97
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                            • Innocent Bystander Chardonnay 2005 Front Label
                              Innocent Bystander Chardonnay 2005
                              Chardonnay from Yarra Valley, Victoria, Australia
                              • WS87
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                              17 99
                              16 99
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                            • Ridge Santa Cruz Chardonnay 2005 Front Label
                              Ridge Santa Cruz Chardonnay 2005
                              Chardonnay from Santa Cruz Mountains, California
                              • WS95
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                              Currently Unavailable $57.99
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                              57 99
                              57 99
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