Chardonnay is a white grape of French origin, endemic to the Burgundy region, where it reaches high levels of quality. It is also quite appreciated in the area of Champagne because it is one of the three grapes—along with Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier— used to create the perfect blend that delivers the most renowned sparkling wine in the world.
This small honey-colored fruit has a sweet flavor, and the wines that come from it are light, with high acidity, and flavors reminiscent of tropical fruits and citrus notes. But the most interesting characteristic of this excellent grape is that it is suitable for aging in oak casks, which helps bring forth noble vanilla and dried fruit hints giving it body and unique elegance. Chardonnay wines are ideal to accompany fish, seafood, white meats and spicy foods.
Let us introduce you to three outstanding Chardonnay wines.
Meursault Louis Latour Premier Cru 2010
WINERY: Louis Latour // REGION: Burgundy (France) // GRAPES: chardonnay 100%
The Louis Latour family business is one of the most famous wineries in Burgundy. Their noble white wines have earned high esteem inside and outside of France. Meursault Louis Latour Premier Cru 2010 is a small masterpiece of winemaking made from chardonnay grapes. It shows an intense light golden color, with powerful and clear citrus aromas and attractive nuances of toasted oak. On the palate, one can perceive its elegance, pleasant flavor and mineral finish. This is a perfectly structured wine that can be properly stored for at least another decade. Read here about other outstanding wines from Burgundy.
Springfield Methode Ancienne Chardonnay 2011
WINERY: Springfield Estate // REGION: Robertson, Breede River Valley (South Afriuca) // GRAPES: chardonnay 100%
Located in Robertson, in South Africa’s Breede River Valley, the Springfield Estate winery produces this chardonnay in the classic old-style of the wines from Burgundy—without filtering or clarification—giving it a distinctive and classic style. The wine spends 12 months in French oak barrels, and its color is greenish yellow. Closer to the nose, one perceives aromas of tropical fruit with floral notes and the flavor highlights its fruity nuances in perfect balance with notes of wood from the barrels where it was aged. The end is elegant, classic and delicate. Bottled and well protected, it will be even more delightful if it is aged for 3-5 additional years. Find here other magnificent wines form South Africa.
WINERY: Torres // REGION: Conca de Barberà, Catalonia (Spain) // GRAPES: chardonnay 100%
At the foot of the Milmanda Castle, the Torres family—one of the most renowned winemakers in Spain—cultivates chardonnay grapes that are used to make a white varietal wine, whose vinification takes place in new French oak barrels, to later be aged for 12 additional months. Bright yellow with golden highlights, it has intense aromas of flowers and fruits like pineapple, peach, and citrus, with hints of roasted nuts and spices characteristic of the barrels used for aging. In the mouth, it shows superb complexity and structure, where the fruity sensations and balanced acidity make it an ideal pairing for seafood, shellfish, fish, and poultry. This wine is so imposing and distinguished that the Spanish royal family has chosen it for many official celebrations. ■