Chardonnay Wine Recommendations & Reviews

White Wine Grape Bunches
Donald Gruener / Getty Images

Chardonnay is one of the most well-known and well-loved white wine varietals on the market. With a long and distinguished following, Chardonnay enjoys a very versatile image, with vintners offering a broad range of styles and structures. From rich, buttery Chardonnays that boast power and presence to the unoaked fruit-forward Chardonnays that allow the varietal character and expression to be in the spotlight, this white wine is capable of accommodating most palates and just as many food pairing combinations.

  • 01 of 09

    Mer Soleil Chardonnay 2010 (CA) $30

    Mer Soleil Chardonnay

    Courtesy of Mer Soleil

    With bold fruit sourced from Santa Lucia Highlands, the 2010 Mer Soleil Chardonnay presents an ambitious, classic California Chardonnay - a rich, creamy style with big, ripe fruit that ranges from zesty citrus to succulent pineapple and toasted coconut (thanks to the heady, focused influence of French oak). The acidity is bright and engaging rounding out the creamy textures and spotlighting the fruit while making for exceptional food pairing partnerships. Well-balanced, well-priced, and perfect for pairing with lobster tail, crab cakes or poultry picks served with cream or butter-based sauces, the 2010 Mer Soleil rocks out with remarkable symmetry and fine-tuned balance - another wine delight from the Wagner Family.

  • 02 of 09

    Shafer Red Shoulder Ranch Chardonnay 2011 (CA) $50

    Shafer Red Shoulder Ranch Chardonnay

    Courtesy of Shafer

    Deliciously complicated, the 2011 Shafer Red Shoulder Ranch Chardonnay invites with exquisite aromatics and layers of intense palate intrigue. Starting with a Sauternes-like nose with rich tropical fruit well supported by honeyed apricot and tangy citrus, the wine's palate profile spotlights elegant fruit nuances with brilliant balance and zesty acidity. Perfect for pairing with a variety of cream-based dishes or favorite seafood combinations.

  • 03 of 09

    Chateau St. Jean Sonoma County Reserve Chardonnay 2012 (CA) $13

    Chateau St. Jean Sonoma County Reserve Chardonnay

    Courtesy of Chateau St. Jean 

    Chateau St. Jean is known for producing some elegant Chardonnays year in and year out. The 2012 vintage is no exception, expect plenty of tropical fruit, lemon, tangerine, and butterscotch. Give it a go with fresh baked clams or grilled salmon with butter-lemon sauce.

  • 04 of 09

    Chalone Estate Chardonnay 2011 (CA) $20

    Chalone Estate Chardonnay

    Courtesy of Chalone

    A long time favorite among Chardonnay lovers, the 2007 Chalone Estate Chardonnay ups the ante with vibrant fruit, ample minerality, and an ever-lasting finish. On the palate, you'll find pear, apple, stone fruit and light influences of tropical pineapple all set amidst a fine backdrop of honey and spice.

    Continue to 5 of 9 below.
  • 05 of 09

    Iron Horse Estate Chardonnay 2010 (CA) $24

    Iron Horse Estate Chardonnay

    Courtesy of Iron Horse

    The 2010 Iron Horse Estate Chardonnay is a classic Russian River Valley Chardonnay, delivering depth, vibrant acidity, and a foundation of mineral-laden nuances. The nose reveals tremendous fruit with mango and apple, peaches, and pears along with citrus notes all vying for attention. Rich, creamy textures with bits of spice, mineral, and vanilla wrapped around a core of dynamic acidity and persistent fruit all culminate in a phenomenal finish. Perfect for pairing with creamy butter-based sauces, roasted poultry, pan seared sea bass, and lobster bisque.

  • 06 of 09

    De Martino Legado Reserva Chardonnay 2010 (Chile) $15

    De Martino Chardonnay

    Courtesy of De Martino

    This fresh fruit-filled Chardonnay from Chile's cool, coastal Limari Valley brings some serious citrus fruit to the forefront both on the nose and doubling up on the palate. The palate profile reveals a heady mixture of minerality and creamy textures, with plenty of supporting acidity and an enduring finish.

  • 07 of 09

    Louis Jadot Macon-Villages 2012 (FR) $15

    Louis Jadot Macon-Villages

    Courtesy of Louis Jadot

    This is a solid value white wine based on the Chardonnay grape from Burgundy. Floral and citrus appeal play the nose and the dry, crisp palate profile spotlights green apple and D'Anjou pear essence. Perfect for pairing with fresh fish and poultry dishes.

  • 08 of 09

    Robert Oatley Chardonnay 2012 (AUS) $14

    A classic Aussie Chardonnay, this 2012 Robert Oatley Chardonnay brings a medium-bodied wine to the table with aromatics firmly focused on floral notes and scents of sweet peach. Expect plenty of fruit to push its way to the palate with some serious melon picking up the spotlight, decent balance and good overall value make this a top pick from down under.

    Continue to 9 of 9 below.
  • 09 of 09

    Clos du Bois Chardonnay 2011 (CA) $13

    Clos du Bois Chardonnay

     Courtesy of Clos du Bois

    This is a "go to" bargain-based Chardonnay from Clos du Bois with golden colors, and a blend of green apple and pear with a touch of lively citrus on the nose and echoing again on the palate. Enjoy the acidity of this wine by pairing with a wide variety of your favorite foods, consider seafood, pork, and poultry for potential pairing starters.