Definitely the king of the whites, this grape has recently fallen into disfavour with many. The ABC (Anything but Chardonnay) faction has swung its preferences to other wines such as Pinot Grigio and Viognier. This is in our opinion is likely a fad as Chardonnay has much to offer. Chardonnay is likely the most widely grown grape variety in the world due to its ease in growing and versatility to different growing conditions.
This versatile grape can display a wide variety of tastes due to the wide range of soils it is grown under as well as the winemaker’s influences. While many are aware that Chardonnay can produce a very full bodied wine it can also produce subtle light steely wines such as Chablis.
Today the latest trend with Chardonnay is Unoaked or Naked Chardonnay. Without the oak, Chardonnay can fully demonstrate its terrific fruit forward characteristics with many apple like tastes. To try a Unoaked Chardonnay you might try the Estate Series Dry Creek Unoaked Chardonnay, or sign up for Cellar Craft’s March Limited Release Santa Barbara Naked Chardonnay. Doesn’t that sound very California like, naked that is. Cellar Craft also has a wonderful kit in both 4 and 6 week format called Pousse Blanc. This Unoaked Chardonnay also has a dab of Chenin Blanc. It comes very highly recommended by the Creative Connoisseur gang as a must try.
Chardonnay is quite often found in blends, such as the Bourgeron Blanc or Chardonnay Semillon. The presence of Semillon tames the Chardonnay down and rounds the wine out. We have Chardonnay-Semillon wine kits in both the 4 and 6 week format.
Of course Chardonnay is more known as the full bodied wine that still remains the number one commercial white wine in terms of sales. To taste the full-on Chardonnay wine we highly recommend Australian Chardonnay. The Selection International Australian Chardonnay comes with 4, yes 4 oak packages. This past fall Winexpert introduced an Australian Chardonnay to its Vintners Reserve Passport series. This Vintners Reserve kit produces the most full bodied white wine in its class and it is on sale during the month of January.