The weather is ripe for Chardonnay—warm enough for white wine and cool enough for lots of body. But what makes Chardonnay one of the most popular white wines of our time? The answer is in the flavor.
This grape varietal is one of the best for oak-aging, a key process that many red wine drinkers love in their glass. Why? It’s a fairly neutral grape, which means it’s also known to be susceptible to changes in terroir. While the main characteristics of Chardonnay’s palate is easy to guess–notes of butter, some bright fruit–the difference between bottles lies in the region in which it’s made. Chardonnay with more potent fruit usually hail from the Southern Hemisphere, while Chardonnay with more buttery notes are typical of California.
Celebrate Chardonnay with a few selections available now at ABC!
This Washington wine sings of apples. Aged in both stainless steel and oak, Boedecker Cellars Purity Chardonnay cuts back a little on the oak to allow bright notes of lemon and pineapple shine through. Sip this alongside shellfish on your back porch.
This Chardonnay is packed the complexity you’d expect from a California wine. Spice and citrus intermingle on a palate of pear notes and minerality. This one is ripe with flavor and great for a casual dinner of fish.
Frei Brothers Reserve Chardonnay is soft and buttery and exemplifies California Chardonnay. This wine can only be described as rich, complex, nutty and balanced with notes of toasted oak, green apple and pears. Sip alone to get the full, satisfyingly complicated flavor.
Another California Chard, but this one delights with more fruit flavors. Enjoy a palate of citrus, honey, vanilla and pear in this North Coast rendition. This one is tasty when paired with crab.
This classic Chardonnay is a guest-favorite at ABC with notes of fig and apple on a pleasingly smooth, creamy palate. Made in Napa Valley, Whitehall Lane Chardonnay shows it’s refreshing side at the end of every sip.
Every bottle of Chardonnay contains those pleasing notes of butter and fruit, but the ratio of the two on the palate is where the difference is made. Where are you on the Chardonnay spectrum?