Chardonnay Delivery or Pickup
The Instacart guide to Chardonnay
Chardonnay finds its origin in the Burgundy region of France. It gets its name from a small town in Maconnais, which produces high-value yet inexpensive Chardonnay. This popular grape variety is grown globally and is featured in several other wine creations, including Montrachet, Meursault, Pouilly-Fuissé, and Chablis.
While Chardonnay can taste different depending on where the grapes are grown and how it is made, it is typically a dry and medium- or full-bodied wine with fruit flavors of apple, lemon, papaya, and pineapple, as well as spicy undertones of clove and nutmeg. When aged in oak barrels, Chardonnay can also emit a vanilla aroma.
Chardonnay is fermented in barrels to give it extra tannin and structure. When fermented in new oak barrels, these notes are more aromatic, whereas chardonnay aged in older barrels has a more formidable texture. It is common among winemakers to ferment a portion of this wine in new oak and reuse older barrels for the rest. This effect results in a more balanced wine and saves money on buying expensive new oak barrels.
A new trend has recently developed among Chardonnay winemakers. Naked or un-oaked Chardonnay allows this grape variety to reveal its unique flavors without the added oak undertones. Rather than using oak barrels, these wineries use stainless-steel containers to finish the fermentation process.
A fermentation process that is unique to mostly red wines also takes place with Chardonnays. This process, called Malolactic fermentation or malo for short, transforms tart malic acid into softer lactic acid. The effect is soft tannins, decreased bitterness, and buttery flavors.
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