Chardonnay is an international superstar varietal. The world's most famous white wine grape hails from the Burgundy region in France, where it makes some of the planet's most complex, full flavoured and expensive white wines. The secret to Chardonnay's success is its versatility. Grown just about everywhere, it adapts well to different climates and winemaking techniques to produce wines in a whole range of styles. Budding historians will be interested to know that recent evidence shows that Chardonnay arose from an ancient cross between the Pinot Noir and Gouais Blanc varieties.

In cooler regions Chardonnay makes wines with a delicate texture, with flavours of lemons, green apples and sometimes even grapefruit. In warmer regions, it gives rich flavours of tropical fruit, pineapples and peaches. When the wines are fermented in oak barrels, these characters may be combined with buttery, toasty and nutty elements. Indeed, one of the strengths of Chardonnay is that, when handled carefully in the winery, it marries well with the flavours imparted by new oak to produce complex, full flavoured white wines.

Made with this varietal: Dylan