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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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  • Greg Norman Estates Victoria Chardonnay 2003 Front Label
    Greg Norman Estates Victoria Chardonnay 2003
    Chardonnay from Victoria, Australia
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  • Kistler Vineyards Hyde Vineyard Chardonnay 2003 Front Label
    Kistler Vineyards Hyde Vineyard Chardonnay 2003
    Chardonnay from Carneros, California
    • RP94
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  • Kistler Vineyards Hudson Chardonnay 2003 Front Label
    Kistler Vineyards Hudson Chardonnay 2003
    Chardonnay from Carneros, California
    • RP92
    • WS91
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  • Lapostolle Cuvee Alexandre Chardonnay 2003 Front Label
    Lapostolle Cuvee Alexandre Chardonnay 2003
    Chardonnay from Chile
    • WS91
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  • Marcassin Marcassin Vineyard Chardonnay 2003 Front Label
    Marcassin Marcassin Vineyard Chardonnay 2003
    Chardonnay from Sonoma Coast, Sonoma County, California
    • RP95
    • WS93
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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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  • Concha y Toro Marques de Casa Concha Chardonnay 2003 Front Label
    Concha y Toro Marques de Casa Concha Chardonnay 2003
    Chardonnay from Chile
    • WS90
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  • Yering Station Chardonnay 2003 Front Label
    Yering Station Chardonnay 2003
    Chardonnay from Yarra Valley, Victoria, Australia
    • WS90
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  • Blackstone Chardonnay 2003
    Chardonnay from California
    • WS86
    • WE85
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  • Waterbrook Chardonnay 2003 Front Label
    Waterbrook Chardonnay 2003
    Chardonnay from Columbia Valley, Washington
    • WS88
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  • Mulderbosch Chardonnay 2003 Front Label
    Mulderbosch Chardonnay 2003
    Chardonnay from South Africa
    • WS88
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  • Chateau Ste. Michelle Ethos Chardonnay 2003 Front Label
    Chateau Ste. Michelle Ethos Chardonnay 2003
    Chardonnay from Columbia Valley, Washington
    • WE94
    • WS91
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  • Cape Mentelle Chardonnay 2003 Front Label
    Cape Mentelle Chardonnay 2003
    Chardonnay from Margaret River, Western Australia, Australia
    • WS91
    • WE90
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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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  • Catena Alta Chardonnay 2003 Front Label
    Catena Alta Chardonnay 2003
    Chardonnay from Argentina
    • WS91
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  • Talbott Cuvee Cynthia Chardonnay 2003 Front Label
    Talbott Cuvee Cynthia Chardonnay 2003
    Chardonnay from Central Coast, California
    • WE95
    • WS94
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  • Chateau Ste. Michelle Indian Wells Vineyard Chardonnay 2003 Front Label
    Chateau Ste. Michelle Indian Wells Vineyard Chardonnay 2003
    Chardonnay from Columbia Valley, Washington
    • WS88
    • CG88
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  • Snoqualmie Chardonnay 2003 Front Label
    Snoqualmie Chardonnay 2003
    Chardonnay from Columbia Valley, Washington
    • WS89
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  • Rochioli Chardonnay 2003 Front Label
    Rochioli Chardonnay 2003
    Chardonnay from Russian River, Sonoma County, California
    • WS90
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  • Trevor Jones Virgin Chardonnay 2003 Front Label
    Trevor Jones Virgin Chardonnay 2003
    Chardonnay from Australia
    • WS90
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  • Rosemount Show Reserve Chardonnay 2003 Front Label
    Rosemount Show Reserve Chardonnay 2003
    Chardonnay from Hunter Valley, New South Wales, Australia
    • WS90
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  • Annie's Lane Chardonnay 2003 Front Label
    Annie's Lane Chardonnay 2003
    Chardonnay from Clare Valley, South Australia, Australia
    • WS88
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  • Truchard Estate Carneros Chardonnay 2003
    Chardonnay from Carneros, California
    • WS93
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  • Bayten Buitenverwachting Chardonnay 2003 Front Label
    Bayten Buitenverwachting Chardonnay 2003
    Chardonnay from South Africa
    • WS90
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  • Leeuwin Estate Art Series Chardonnay 2003 Front Label
    Leeuwin Estate Art Series Chardonnay 2003
    Chardonnay from Margaret River, Western Australia, Australia
    • WS94
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