Chardonnay like the Pinot noir has his fans and his haters. If Pinot noir gives red wines for white wine drinkers, Chardonnay gives white wines for red wine drinkers. I have found out that most of the time when people say they don’t like Chardonnay in fact the meant they don’t like oaky Australian Chardonnay, actually I have never met anyone who doesn’t like a Chablis (the Chardonnay minerality expression) or a Meursault (South of Burgundy). Chardonnay best expression is usually said to be from Burgundy, in this area they practice the aging in oaky barrels but we will see below that there are many other good areas for Chardonnay. White wines made from Chardonnay are usually Rich full-bodied.
Best places for wines made from Chardonnay
Burgundy: Chablis, Côte d’Or, Mâconnais, Chalonnais
From Mâcon to Bastard Montrachet you can enjoy Chardonnay in its cheapest to its most expensive version. Cheap Chardonnay are brilliant to match food when expensive will be far more complex to make the pairing easy. like big Bordeaux you probably would love to enjoy them by the glass.
Chablis is the probably the most consumed in the world but don’t miss the petit Chablis which is cheap and very easy to match with seafood, fish, chicken, when Chablis Grand Cru will express vanilla, citrus, white flowers scents.
Adelaide Hills, Hunter Valley, Margaret River
Australian Chardonnay tempt to copy the burgundy style, but the climate being warmer those wines are more full-bodied, the cheapest versions unfortunately are the one who give the bad reputation of Chardonnay. Taste Chardonnay wine from those area, don’t spend less than £12 and enjoy!
California, Russian River, Sonoma, county
More expensive but very Classy, no hesitation in tasting those Chardonnay expression.
Champagne my dear!
Don’t tell me you don’t like this kind of Chardonnay? The bubble, the freshness of this climate give a light Chardonnay, refreshing and if you like it complex go for the vintage version, the Blanc de Blanc version. My recommendation always chose within those categories: Extra-Brut, Zero-Dosage, Ultra-brut, non-dosage, where there is the minimum sugar (up to 0) added.