Chardonnay Brands

20 Brilliant Chardonnay Brands To Buy In 2024 (Best Bottles, Prices)

by Elaine Lau

The world’s favorite white wine, Chardonnay comes in many fantastic styles and flavors - thanks to the influence of terroir and oak!

But, which brand should you look out for? Which bottle will be perfect for your cellar?

This article explores the 20 Chardonnay brands you should check out in 2024 with their different Chardonnay wines, best bottles, tasting notes, and prices.

Further reading

20 Brilliant Chardonnay Brands (Including Best Wines to Buy in 2024)

Here are the 20 fine brands to get your next Chardonnay bottle from:

  1. Domaine Leflaive Chardonnay (Burgundy, France)
  2. Penfolds Chardonnay (Adelaide, Australia)
  3. Rombauer Vineyards Chardonnay (Napa Valley, USA)
  4. Cakebread Cellars Chardonnay (Napa Valley, USA)
  5. Beringer Chardonnay (Napa Valley, USA)
  6. Chateau Ste Michelle Chardonnay (Washington, USA)
  7. J Lohr Chardonnay (California, USA)
  8. Long Meadow Ranch Chardonnay (California, USA)
  9. Domaine d'Auvenay Chardonnay (Burgundy, France)
  10. Talbott Vineyards Chardonnay (California, USA)
  11. Benovia Chardonnay (California, USA)
  12. Stags Leap Chardonnay (Napa Valley, USA)
  13. Robert Mondavi Chardonnay (Napa Valley, USA)
  14. Domaine Francois Raveneau Chardonnay (Burgundy, France)
  15. Ferrari Chardonnay (Trentino, Italy)
  16. Josh Cellars Chardonnay (California, USA)
  17. Kumeu River Chardonnay (Auckland, New Zealand)
  18. Gaja Chardonnay (Piedmont, Italy)
  19. Bodegas Catena Zapata Chardonnay (Mendoza, Argentina)
  20. Maison Champy Chardonnay (Burgundy, France)

1. Domaine Leflaive Chardonnay (Burgundy, France)

Domaine Leflaive Chardonnay

Domaine Leflaive is a Puligny-Montratchet wine estate situated in the Cote de Beaune region of France. The winery focuses exclusively on Grand Cru and Premier Cru Chardonnay wines. 

Its most prestigious Grand Cru Chardonnay is Montrachet. It is incredibly complex, seductive, and highly age-worthy and can easily command over $5,000 for a single bottle.

The estate’s most famous Premier Cru is Les Clavoillon - a floral and fruity oaked Chardonnay.

Best Wines:

  • 2004 Domaine Leflaive Montrachet Grand Cru ($35,010): This oaked Chardonnay has white flowers and spice aromas with a piercing mineral flavor.
  • 1990 Domaine Leflaive Chevalier-Montrachet Grand Cru ($2,358):  It is bold, rich, and elegant on the nose. The palate is elegant and feminine. 

2. Penfolds Chardonnay (Adelaide, Australia)

Penfolds Chardonnay

Australia's most famous wine producer, Penfolds, is known for its consistently high-quality wines, ranging from age-worthy Cabernets to crisp Chardonnays.

It produces a range of single-vineyard Chardonnay wines and limited-release Reserve wines that pack exotic fruit flavor and oaky nuances. 

The fruit is sourced from vineyard plots situated across South Australia. 

Best Wines:

  • 2013 Penfolds Koonunga Hill Chardonnay ($20): It is a medium-bodied wine with pineapple and citrus aromas, a creamy palate, and nice acidity.
  • 2016 Penfolds Yattarna 'Bin 144' Chardonnay ($171): This cool-climate Chardonnay has a subtle toasted nut bouquet, a rich, concentrated palate, and a velvety finish.

3. Rombauer Vineyards Chardonnay (Napa Valley, USA)

Rombauer Vineyards Chardonnay

Established in 1980 by Joan and Koerner Rombauer in Napa Valley, Rombauer Vineyards is known mainly for its varietal Cabernet Sauvignon wines. 

But its portfolio also includes Merlot, Petite Sirah, Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, and Zinfandel.

It produces five exotic Chardonnay wines:

  • Carneros Chardonnay: a cool-climate Chard made from the fruit sourced from Carneros
  • Proprietor Chardonnay: a blend of selected barrels from the best vintages
  • Buchli Station Chardonnay: a single-vineyard wine
  • Home Ranch Chardonnay: produced from older vines at the Home Ranch Vineyard
  • Late Harvest Chardonnay: a fully fermented Chardonnay aged in freshly toasted oak barrels

Best Wines:

  • 2020 Rombauer Vineyards Proprietor Selection Chardonnay ($77): It is a buttery Chardonnay with layered pineapple, lemon, baked green apple, toast, and vanilla notes.
  • 2007 Rombauer Vineyards Chardonnay ($69): It has ripe pear, apple, and honeydew melon flavor balanced by spicy, toasted oak. The creamy palate has a subtle sweetness.

4. Cakebread Cellars Chardonnay (Napa Valley, USA)

Cakebread Cellars Chardonnay

Located in the Rutherford AVA of Napa Valley, Cakebread Cellars is best known for its Chardonnay and Cabernet Sauvignon wines. But there is also a range of single-vineyard and estate wines like the Anderson Valley Pinot Noir and a Napa Valley Sauvignon Blanc.

Cakebread's flagship Chardonnay is Napa Chardonnay.

The Chardonnay is 90% barrel-fermented, with roughly one-third of that taking place in new oak. A small portion goes through malolactic fermentation, giving it a creamy texture.

Best Wines:

  • 2012 Cakebread Cellars Reserve Chardonnay ($111): It boasts sweet golden apple and white peach aromas. The full-bodied palate has refreshing mineral tones.
  • 2019 Cakebread Cellars Cutting Wharf Vineyard Chardonnay ($59): It has buttery, spicy oak aromas enmeshed in citrus, tangerine, and white peach palate.

5. Beringer Chardonnay (Napa Valley, USA)

Beringer Chardonnay

The iconic Beringer winery has been producing critically acclaimed red and white Napa Valley wines since 1876.

Beringer Chardonnay wines are rich and buttery, resulting from the malolactic fermentation in hand-picked French oak barrels. 

These Chardonnay wines have fresh fruit flavors and a pleasant acidity with around 14 - 15% ABV. 

It produces five different styles of Chardonnay:

  • An easy-drinking winery exclusive Chardonnay
  • A Private Reserve Chardonnay
  • A crisp and refreshing Luminous Oak Knoll Chardonnay
  • A bourbonbarrel-aged Chardonnay, and
  • A classic Napa Valley Chardonnay

Best Wines:

  • 1998 Beringer Vineyards Sbragia Limited Release Chardonnay ($107): This dense, full-bodied wine toasted almonds, citrus, and apple notes.
  • 2014 Beringer Vineyards Private Reserve Chardonnay ($58): This white wine sports blackcurrant, earth, oak, graphite, and mineral notes. 

6. Chateau Ste Michelle Chardonnay (Washington, USA)

Chateau Ste Michelle Chardonnay

Chateau Ste Michelle is the oldest and one of the most prestigious wineries in Washington. 

The company produces a wide range of varietal wines like Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, and Chardonnay, but it is best known for its high-quality wines made from Riesling.

Thanks to Columbia Valley’s unique terroir, their single-vineyard Chardonnay wines exhibit "Old World" acidity and structure with "New World" fruit intensity.

To add richness and complexity, the Chardonnays go through malolactic fermentation and yeast fermentation.

Best Wines:

  • 2011 Chateau Ste Michelle Ethos Reserve Chardonnay ($42): It has fabulous plum, black currant, licorice, new leather, and ground herbs notes with a superb finish.
  • 2013 Chateau Ste Michelle Cold Creek Vineyard Chardonnay ($48): This barrel-aged white wine offers buttered peach, white flowers, and citrus notes.

7. J Lohr Chardonnay (California, USA)

J Lohr Chardonnay

One of the most prominent American wineries, J Lohr produces more than a million cases of wine a year. Its wine portfolio includes a range of varietal and blended wines ranging from fruity Cabernet Sauvignon to buttery Chardonnay.

There are three J Lohr Chardonnay wines:

  • Arroyo 
  • October Night
  • Riverstone

These wines are youthful, refreshing, and have a citrusy flavor balanced by fruit notes. The oak aging gives them a buttery texture and long finish.

Best Wines:

  • 2005 J. Lohr Estates Riverstone Chardonnay ($16): It packs intense fruit flavor, nuanced oak aroma, and refreshing acidity.
  • 2016 J. Lohr October Night Vineyard Chardonnay ($48): It has a baked apple, lime, and pear aroma. The tightly wound texture boasts a citrus-driven grapefruit finish.

8. Long Meadow Ranch Chardonnay (California, USA)

Long Meadow Ranch Chardonnay

Long Meadow Ranch offers exotic wine and food experiences from extra virgin olive oils, grass-fed beef, eggs, heirloom fruits, and vegetables to Burgundy-style wines. 

Its Chardonnay wines are produced exclusively in the Anderson Valley estate located in the west or “deep end” of Mendocino County. The Navarro River and the Pacific Ocean provide a natural marine climate ideal for the Chardonnay grape.

There are three Chardonnay wine styles:

  • Chardonnay Anderson Valley
  • Chardonnay Feliz Anderson Valley Estate
  • Late Harvest Chardonnay Anderson Vallery

Best Wines:

  • 2015 Long Meadow Ranch Late Harvest Chardonnay ($66): It boasts an intense bouquet of ginger, honeycomb, candied lemon, mineral, and nutmeg. 
  • 2016 Long Meadow Ranch Chardonnay ($42): It is a youthful white wine with floral, pear, and lemon curd aromatics and a long, energizing finish.

9. Domaine d'Auvenay Chardonnay (Burgundy, France)

Domaine d'Auvenay Chardonnay

Domaine d’Auvenay is a Burgundy wine estate famous for its Grand and Premier Cru Pinot Noir and Chardonnay wines. 

The fruit for its Grand Cru Chardonnay wines is sourced from the Mazis-Chambertin, Bonnes-Mares, and Bâtard-Montrachet vineyard plots.

The grape bunches are hand-sorted, and the fermentation takes place in whole bunches. Their white Burgundies are considered some of the most complex and age-worthy wines, making them popular among wine collectors.

Best Wines:

  • 1998 Leroy Domaine d'Auvenay Chevalier-Montrachet Grand Cru ($64,605): This Grand Cru wine gives off white flowers, stone fruit, honey, earth, and smoke aroma. The palate is luscious with a long, smooth finish.
  • 2011 Leroy Domaine d'Auvenay Meursault Les Narvaux ($12,055): It has a smoky mineral, white peach, lemon, and fennel aroma. The palate has youthful acidity.

10. Talbott Vineyards Chardonnay (California, USA)

Talbott Vineyards Chardonnay

Located in Monterey County, Talbot Vineyards is famous for its Pinot Noir and Chardonnay wines. 

Its Chardonnay wines are sourced from unique plots of their estate vineyards. The top three single-vineyard wines include:

  • Kali Hart Chardonnay
  • Sleepy Hollow Chardonnay
  • Diamond T Chardonnay

Each Chardonnay wine reflects the unique terroir of the vineyard they’re sourced from. These easy-drinking whites pack lively acidity, which makes them perfect for food.

Best Wines:

  • 2014 Talbott Vineyards Sleepy Hollow Vineyard Chardonnay ($41): The nose displays lightly toasted almond, melted butter, chalk, and Meyer lemon scents. The palate is refreshingly acidic.
  • 2017 Talbott Vineyards Kali Hart Chardonnay ($20): It has toffee, dark apples, and dried pineapple aromas, a medium body, and a resilient and bright finish. 

11. Benovia Chardonnay (California, USA)

Benovia Chardonnay

Benovia is a Russian River Valley estate situated in the heart of Sonoma County. It produces a range of Pinot Noir and Chardonnay wines.

The Chardonnay wines are produced through native fermentation and aged in fine-grained French oak barrels. This adds incredible complexity to the wines.

There Chardonnay wine portfolio includes:

  • Blanc de Blancs
  • Sonoma County Chardonnay
  • Russian River Valley Chardonnay
  • Martaella Vineyard Chardonnay
  • Three Sisters
  • La Pommeraie
  • Liberation

Best Wines:

  • 2017 Benovia Russian River Chardonnay ($54): The nose of this Russian River wine has dried apricot and white rose aromas, while the palate displays abundant acidity.
  • 2019 Benovia La Pommeraie Chardonnay ($59): The bouquet includes lemon blossom and Asian pear aromas accentuated by candied ginger. 

12. Stags Leap Chardonnay (Napa Valley, USA)

Stags Leap Chardonnay

Stags Leap wine estate, situated in the Stags Leap District of Southern Napa Valley, produces brilliant Chardonnay wines that showcase the excellent characteristics of the grape.

The winery’s Chardonnays are produced without malolactic fermentation, bringing out their fruity flavor.

The three Stags Leap Chardonnays are:

  • Stags Leap Chardonnay
  • Late Harvest Chardonnay
  • Barrel Selection Chardonnay

Best Wines:

  • 2015 Stags' Leap Winery Chardonnay ($34): It has bright citrus, green apple, and hazelnut aromas, a refreshing acidity, and a pepper finish.
  • 2019 Stags' Leap Barrel Selection Carneros Chardonnay ($50): It is a sleek and pure-tasting Chardonnay with citrus zest aromas, minerally midpalate, and a long finish. 

13. Robert Mondavi Chardonnay (Napa Valley, USA)

Robert Mondavi Chardonnay

Situated in the iconic Napa Valley, the legendary Robert Mondavi Winery was established in 1966.

The winery produces a range of exotic Chardonnay wine styles that encapsulate refreshing, crisp acidity and vibrant flavor, including:

  • 100% Chardonnay
  • Bourbon barrel-aged Chardonnay
  • Buttery Chardonnay
  • Robert Mondavi Private Selection Chardonnay
  • Woodbridge by Robert Mondavi Chardonnay

The estate’s winemaker regularly hand-stir the juice for nine months and ferment the wine in French oak barrels to give them a complex flavor.

Best Wines:

  • 2000 Robert Mondavi Winery Napa Valley Chardonnay ($277): It has rich, ripe layers of apple, pear, and melon with hazelnut and baking spice hints. The palate has toasty oak nuances and a creamy, lingering finish.
  • 2012 Robert Mondavi Winery Private Selection Chardonnay ($16): It’s a nice, soft, and rich Chard with pineapple, lemon candy, and oak flavors, and bright acidity.

14. Domaine Francois Raveneau Chardonnay (Burgundy, France)

Domaine Francois Raveneau Chardonnay

Domaine Francois Raveneau is one of the most celebrated estates of Chablis, Burgundy, producing some of the finest Chardonnay wines of the world.

The fruit for their complex Chardonnay wines is sourced from three Grand Cru and six Premier Cru vineyards. 

The winemaker uses traditional winemaking methods for its Chardonnay wines, including harvesting the fruit by hand, alcoholic fermentation followed by malolactic fermentation in oak barrels, and aging the wine for 18 months in older oak barrels and feuillette.

Best Wines:

  • 2019 Domaine Francois Raveneau Les Clos Chablis Grand Cru ($3,635): It is leesy, waxy, and effortlessly complex on the palate. The bouquet packs pear, apple, flinty minerality, anise, citrus peel, and vanillin oak.
  • 2010 Domaine Francois Raveneau Valmur Chablis Grand Cru ($1,001): It boasts excellent density and depth with lemon curd, pear, and limestone notes.

15. Ferrari Chardonnay (Trentino, Italy) 

Ferrari Chardonnay

Ferrari is a prestigious sparkling wine producer situated in the Trentodoc wine region. It is known for its classic Champagne blends and sparkling wines made from the traditional method, “Methode Champenoise.”

Its Chardonnay focused sparkling wines include:

  • Blanc de Blancs
  • Demi-Sec sparkling wine
  • Perle
  • Ferrari Riserva Lunelli

Best Wines:

  • 1997 Fratelli Lunelli Ferrari 'Giulio Ferrari' Riserva del Fondatore Collezione Metodo Classico Trentodoc ($631): It has an intense and complex bouquet of white chocolate, hazelnut, balsamic, baking spice, pineapple, and honey. 
  • 2015 Fratelli Lunelli Ferrari F1 Podium Limited Edition Trentodoc ($65): It is a perfect aperitif with brilliant acidity and refreshing citrus flavor.

16. Josh Cellars Chardonnay (California, USA)

Josh Cellars Chardonnay

Josh Cellars is a family-owned wine estate founded by the Napa Valley vintner, Joseph Carr. 

It makes world-class, handcrafted wines by blending the fruit from distinct vineyards situated in St Helena, Rutherford, Stags Leap District, and Sonoma Coast.

It produces two Chardonnay wine styles.

  • A classic Josh Cellars Chardonnay, and
  • A reserve North Coast Chardonnay

The luscious Josh Chardonnay wines are known for their fruit-forward flavors and buttery texture, resulting from oak aging.

Best Wines:

  • 2017 Joseph Carr Josh Cellars Chardonnay ($17): This California Chardonnay has balanced tropical fruit and citrus aromas with subtle oak notes. The palate is bright and fresh with a soft texture.
  • 2020 Joseph Carr Josh Cellars Buttery Chardonnay Reserve ($18): This Central Coast wine is buttery with subtle citrus notes and a long finish.

17. Kumeu River Chardonnay (Auckland, New Zealand)

Kumeu River Chardonnay

Kumeu River wine estate is located just outside the town of Kumeu in northwest Auckland. This New Zealand winery is mainly known for its Burgundian-style Chardonnay wines.

Kumeu has a cool climate, thanks to its proximity to the Tasman Sea (in the west) and the Pacific Ocean (in the east.) It helps the early-ripening Chardonnay develop deep aromatics.

Best Wines:

  • 2013 Kumeu River Mate's Vineyard Chardonnay ($96): It is is staggeringly concentrated, cool-climate Chardonnay wine with great minerality and tropical fruit flavors. 
  • 2012 Kumeu River Hunting Hill Chardonnay ($82): This Kumeu River Chardonnay is full-bodied with a creamy texture, citrus flavor, and a long, harmonious finish.

18. Gaja Chardonnay (Piedmont, Italy)

Gaja Chardonnay

Gaja is a family-owned Italian wine estate known for its Nebbiolo Barbaresco wines. It also produces a few top-notch Chardonnays that reflect the excellent Italian terroir. 

It ages the Chards in barriques giving it extraordinary oaky complexity while capturing the subtle fruity notes.

Best Wines:

  • 1991 Gaja Gaia & Rey Chardonnay Langhe ($614): This green and flinty Chardonnay has decadent toast, vanilla, and citrus aromas with lively acidity.
  • 1996 Gaja Rossj-Bass Langhe ($176): It packs lovely citrus, floral, and honey aromas with an elegant body and good acidity.

19. Bodegas Catena Zapata Chardonnay (Mendoza, Argentina)

Bodegas Catena Zapata Chardonnay

The Bodegas Catena Zapata is an Argentina wine estate situated in Mendoza. Although it’s famous for its Malbec wines, it also produces some fine Chardonnay wines. 

The fruit for the white wine is sourced from high-altitude vineyard sites to produce ripe fruit with fresh acidity.

Further, barrel fermentations add subtle oaky notes to the wine. 

Best Wines:

  • 2012 Catena Zapata Adrianna Vineyard 'White Bones' Chardonnay ($215): This wine has well-integrated oak notes with tropical fruit and citrus flavors.
  • 2009 Catena Zapata Adrianna Vineyard 'White Stones' Chardonnay ($165): The nose has delicate white flowers and fruit aromas. The palate has a bright finish, clean acidity, and great length.

20. Maison Champy Chardonnay (Burgundy, France)

Maison Champy Chardonnay

Maison Champy is one of the oldest Burgundy wine estates, boasting a winemaking history of over three decades.

The estate produces several Pinot Noir and Chardonnay wines, ranging from Grand Crus to village wines. 

Its signature Chardonnay Grand Cru is Corton-Charlemagne, an oaked Chardonnay with complex earthy nuances captured by the clay-limestone-marl soils.

Best Wines:

  • 2016 Maison Champy Corton-Charlemagne Grand Cru ($210): A well-rounded Chard, this white wine has a citrus, white peach, and vanilla notes with a concentrated finish.
  • 2018 Maison Champy Les Folatieres ($124): It is delicate and citrus on the nose and packs a juicy palate with good depth.

With such diversity, it becomes a little difficult to select the best bottle.

How To Choose The Best Chardonnay

Chardonnay Brands

Here are a few things to consider when buying a Chardonnay bottle.

  • Climate: Cool climate regions like Champagne, Burgundy, Northern Italy, Sonoma Coast, and Chile produce citrusy Chardonnays with refreshing acidity. The warm-climate Spain, southern Italy, and California Chardonnay wines are more fruit-driven.
  • Oaked or Unoaked Chardonnay: Oaked Chards have rich butterscotch, vanilla, and toasty notes, while unoaked Chardonnay wines are crisper and brighter.
  • Sur Lie (Lees Aging): Chards aged on lees have bread and hazelnut notes. 

Get Your Hands On A Fine Chardonnay Now!

Chardonnay Brands

The top Chardonnay brands produce an array of exotic, complex, and delectable Chardonnay wines that will seduce every Chardonnay drinker.

Some of these wines are perfect for long-term investing as well.

Visit the Vinovest website to discover the easiest way to buy, store, and even sell rare and authentic Chardonnay, Pinot Noir red wine, or any other fine wine bottle.

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