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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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    Rochioli South River Vineyard Chardonnay 2005
    Chardonnay from Russian River, Sonoma County, California
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    Geyser Peak Chardonnay 2005
    Chardonnay from Sonoma County, California
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    Cuvaison Chardonnay 2005
    Chardonnay from Carneros, California
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    Chateau Ste. Michelle Canoe Ridge Estate Vineyard Chardonnay 2005
    Chardonnay from Columbia Valley, Washington
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    Wente Chardonnay 2005
    Chardonnay from California
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    Divas Uncorked Chardonnay 2005
    Chardonnay from North Coast, California
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    Bouchaine Estate Chardonnay 2005
    Chardonnay from Carneros, California
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    Flora Springs Family Select Chardonnay 2005
    Chardonnay from Napa Valley, California
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    Simi Chardonnay 2005
    Chardonnay from Sonoma County, California
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    Justin Chardonnay 2005
    Chardonnay from Central Coast, California
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    Los Vascos Chardonnay 2005
    Chardonnay from Chile
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    Concha y Toro Casillero Del Diablo Chardonnay 2005
    Chardonnay from Chile
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    Ch. Potelle Mount Veeder VGS Chardonnay 2005
    Chardonnay from Mt. Veeder, Napa Valley, California
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    Iron Horse Unoaked Chardonnay 2005
    Chardonnay from Russian River, Sonoma County, California
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    Seresin Chardonnay 2005
    Chardonnay from Marlborough, New Zealand
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    Barnard Griffin Chardonnay 2005
    Chardonnay from Columbia Valley, Washington
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    Fleur du Cap Chardonnay 2005
    Chardonnay from South Africa
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    Rochioli Estate Chardonnay 2005
    Chardonnay from Russian River, Sonoma County, California
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    Petaluma Piccadilly Valley Chardonnay 2005
    Chardonnay from Australia
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    Albert Bichot Chablis Grand Cru Moutonne Monopole 2005
    Chardonnay from Chablis, Burgundy, France
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    Cloudy Bay Chardonnay 2005
    Chardonnay from Marlborough, New Zealand
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    L'Ecole 41 Chardonnay 2005
    Chardonnay from Columbia Valley, Washington
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    Albert Bichot Chablis Grand Cru Les Vaudesirs 2005
    Chardonnay from Chablis, Burgundy, France
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    Matanzas Creek Sonoma County Chardonnay 2005
    Chardonnay from Sonoma County, California
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    Albert Bichot Chablis Les Blanchots Grand Cru 2005
    Chardonnay from Chablis, Burgundy, France
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