The Chardonnay grape is thought to have originated in Lebanon, and in France Chardonnay became the only grape allowed to be grown in Chablis
These white Bungundy wines were well enjoyed, and the grape is also used in sparkling wines and Champagne
Chardonnay really hit its prime when it was grown in California, however. Its popularity has grown immensely in the past fourty years, to where it is now the most popular white wine available. Winemakers love Chardonnay because the vines are easy to grow, and have a high yield. Wine drinkers love Chardonnay because of the wide variety of flavours it can take on.
Depending on where it's grown and how it's fermented, Chardonnay can taste semi-sweet or sour, heady or light. Typical flavors are apple, tangerine, lemon, lime, melon, and oak. Also, Chardonnay is not a "rich man's drink". A surprisingly good chardonnay can cost under $10.
Chardonnay is usually dry, and goes best with poultry or seafood, like lobster or scallops. It can even go well with a light red meat dish. Good cheeses for Chardonnay include Gruyere, Provolone, and Brie.
In addition to California and Burgundy, Chardonnays are also grown in quantity in Australia, New Zealand, and South Africa. Cool-climate Chardonnays get longer growing times, and end up with subtle overtones. Warm-climate Chardonnays, on the other hand, become more flavorful and full tasting.
Chardonnay should be served at 48F. Most chardonnays are meant to be drunk immediately, but some can age for 5-10 years or more.
All content on the WineIntro website is personally written by author and wine enthusiast Lisa Shea. WineIntro explores the delicious variety and beautiful history which makes up our world of wine! Lisa loves supporting local wineries and encouraging people to drink whatever they like. We all have different taste buds, and that makes our world wonderful. Always drink responsibly.