Chardonnay Wine is the most popular wine in the world today. Wine lovers in Australia, Netherlands, New Zealand, United States, Denmark and Belgium are enjoying this very versatile wine.
Chardonnay is made from the green-skinned grape variety used in the production of white wine, originating in eastern France, but is now grown wherever wine is produced from every part of the world.
Chardonnay has a wide-range reputation for ease of cultivation and ability to adapt to different conditions.
Harvesting time is crucial to wine making, with the grape rapidly losing acidity as soon as it ripens. Some hazards include the risk of damage from springtime frost, as Chardonnay is an early-budding vine.
The Chardonnay grape itself is very neutral, with many of the flavors from the mineral wines of Chablis, France. Chardonnay tends to be medium to light with flavors of green plum, apple, pear and oak. In warmer locations, such as Australia and New Zealand, the flavors become more citrus, peach, and melon. Warmer locations, like California, have more fig and tropical fruit flavors such as banana and mango.
Chardonnay is an important ingredient to many sparkling wines around the world, including Champagne. Very popular in the late 1980s, but wine enthusiasts saw the grape as a negative ingredient of the global growth of wine. It remains one of the most widely planted grape varieties worldwide. Chardonnay grapes are planted in more wine regions than any other grape – including Cabernet.
Due to the wide range of styles, Chardonnay is paired with a variety of food types. It is most commonly paired with roast chicken and other white meats. Heavily oak tasting Chardonnays do not pair well with fish and seafood. Instead, those wines tend to go better with smoked fish, spicy foods and foods with garlic. Chardonnays from Washington, which have more acidity, tend to pair well with tomato-based dishes and foods with sweet onions. Older, more mellow Chardonnays are often paired with more “earthy” dishes like aged cheese and mushrooms.
Although most famous for its, dry wines, Chardonnay is used to produce a variety of wine styles. The variety is put to use in sparkling wines all over the world, such as Champagne, when it is usually paired with Pinot Noir. Canada even produces sweet Chardonnay ice wines.
Chardonnay has been the fastest-growing white variety over the last decade.