Chardonnay is probably the most popular white wine in the world today and for good reasons. When most people think of white wines, the first thing that comes to their minds is a crisp chilled glass of Chardonnay. Chardonnay is an elegant and regal vintage that can be consumed immediately it is made or left to age and mature for years. It is one of the main ingredients used to make sparkling wines like champagnes and you can find a Chardonnay vineyard in any part of the world due to how popular it is. Because of how diverse Chardonnay grapes taste based on where they were grown, there are different Chardonnay’s that go well with meals as well as being enjoyed on their own.
A brief history of Chardonnay
Chardonnay originated from the eastern France region of Burgundy and was discovered to be a cross between Pinot noir and Guoias Blanc through DNA fingerprinting after much speculation and debate about its origin. In the past chardonnay was thought to have originated solely from France as it shared so many characteristics of French grapes like Pinot Blanc that grew in the same regions with it such as leaf shape and structure. It was also believed to be descended from Muscat with some other vineyard owners arguing that its origins were of Lebanon, Syria, and Cyprus. However because Pinot noir and Guoias Blanc grow so closely together in French vineyards, it makes sense that they had the chance to naturally interbreed and give birth to a strong offspring. Aging Chardonnay in oak gives it a great and luscious feel and for one time in the’80s, winemakers who wanted to capitalize off chardonnays responsiveness to oak began to overexpose the wine to oak which gave it a buttery taste and turned off a lot of wine drinkers. However, winemakers have since learned to only expose chardonnays to be the right amount of oak to continue creating a wine that is tasty and aromatic.
Approximately how many hectares/acres of Chardonnay is grown globally
Chardonnays are very adaptable and can grow anywhere in the world. It takes on the characteristics of the”terroir” that is the soil, climate, of the areas where it is grown which makes chardonnays have such distinct and unique tastes. Chardonnays grown in cool climates have lean, crisp notes and high acidity and chardonnays grown in medium climates tend to have honey and tropical fruit notes. Chardonnay ranks among the most widely planted grapes with 210,000 hectares (520,000 acres) of the grape grown globally as at the year 2015 coming in second to Airen among white wines. They are grown in places like the burgundy and champagne regions of France, South Africa, Italy, Moldova, and Spain.
Wine color of Chardonnay
Chardonnay is a popular white wine grape variety which is also used in sparkling wines. The wine colors of Chardonnay can range from very pale yellows and light greens to intense straw gold. The variation in colors could be as a result of how long the wine was left to age in oak and exposure to grape skins. Most white wines never come in contact with their grape skins as the skins, and stalks are separated once the grapes are pressed and made ready for fermentation.
Grape skin color and sweetness levels of Chardonnay
The skin color of Chardonnay is a light and pale green shade that can be sometimes be mistaken for white and lends to the pale and sometimes yellow and greenish color of the wines made from it.
Chardonnay has a off-dry taste and score a 1-2 on the wine sweetness chart. This means they are not typically sweet but may have a neutral flavor that is influenced by the aging process. They are medium-light bodied, fruit flavored and can be acidic in taste.
Chardonnay’s are popular white wines that are used to create varietal wines as well as blends like champagne and Chablis. They make a great accompaniment for white meats, fish, and pasta and are a favorite for people who prefer light bodied and neutral tasting wines.