Origins and history:– Most famous white grape of Burgundy and one of the most well-travelled grapes in the world. Easy to grow in a variety of climates and very versatile grape – these factors led to a huge amount of Chardonnay being grown in the 80’s and 90’s which in turn led to a subsequent backlash against the variety (ABC - anything but chardonnay). Can be made in a variety of styles, wooded and unwooded and is also one of the main grapes of Champagne.
Characteristics: – ripe yellow fruit – melons, peaches, citrus – gaining honeyed complexity as it ages. Wooded versions can have butterscotch, baked peaches and toffee flavours whilst unwooded ones often surprise with their citrussy acidity and bite. Generally higher in alcohol than most other white wines.
Famous Wines: - Puligny-Montrachet, Pouilly-Fuissé, Meursault, Chablis (all France)
Good Local Examples:- Ataraxia, Hamilton-Russell, Rustenburg, Jordan, Glen Carlou
If it was a person: – Aretha Franklin