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Foxen Chardonnay Bien Nacido Vineyard Block Uu 2012 750ml

Rated 91-93 - An exotic, intriguing Chardonnay, the 2012 Bien Nacido Vineyard Block UU wraps around the palate with an appealing melange of...
$26.64
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Foxen Chardonnay Tinaquaic Vineyard 2012 750ml

Rated 92 - With mouthwatering acidity, a stony minerality, modest alcohol and complex peach, green apple and tropical fruit flavors, this...
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Kendall Jackson Highland Estates Chardonnay Camelot 2012 750ml

Rated 92 - From a cooler climate and gravelly soils, the 2012 Chardonnay Jackson Estate Camelot Highlands comes from 40-year-old, ungrafted vines,...

2012 California Chardonnay Santa Maria Valley

California as a wine producing region has grown in size and importance considerably over the past couple of centuries, and today is the proud producer of more than ninety percent of the United States' wines. Indeed, if California was a country, it would be the fourth largest producer of wine in the world, with a vast range of vineyards covering almost half a million acres. The secret to California's success as a wine region has a lot to do with the high quality of its soils, and the fact that it has an extensive Pacific coastline which perfectly tempers the blazing sunshine it experiences all year round. The winds coming off the ocean cool the vines, and the natural valleys and mountainsides which make up most of the state's wine regions make for ideal areas in which to cultivate a variety of high quality grapes.
Of all the white wine grape varietals, surely the one which has spread the furthest and is most widely appreciated is the Chardonnay. This green skinned grape is now grown all over the Old and New Worlds, from New Zealand to the Americas, from England to Chile, and is one of the first varietals people think of when considering white wine grapes. Perhaps this is because of its huge popularity which reached a peak in the 1990s, thanks to new technologies combining with traditional methods to bring the very best features out of the Chardonnay grape, and allow its unique qualities to shine through. Most fine Chardonnay wines use a process known as malolactic fermentation, wherein the malic acids in the grape juice are converted to lactic acids, allowing a creamier, buttery nature to come forward in the wine. No grape varietal is better suited to this process than Chardonnay, which manages to balance these silky, creamy notes with fresh white fruit flavors beautifully.