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The Best Chardonnays for Every Budget and How We Rated Them

Photo by Heami Lee, Prop Styling Miako Katoh

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“I’ll have a glass of Chardonnay, please.” Of course you will. Easy to find and to love, millions of people drink Chardonnay frequently. The big question is, what type of Chardonnay do you want in your glass, and how much do you want to spend on it?

Chardonnays are dynamic and diverse. Modern iterations hail from the variety’s viticultural birthplace in Burgundy, France to the United States, Australia and beyond, with stylistic interpretations that range from crisp and steely to bold and voluptuous. It can be a value-minded, easy-drinking pour, or a pricier selection of great structure, depth and pedigree capable of long-term cellaring.

Like Goldilocks, from a profile and price perspective, everyone has their own “just right” when it comes to Chardonnay.

To help discover new selections to try that align with your personal preferences, we combed through recent Chardonnay reviews from around the globe to find outstanding wines diverse enough in flavors, textures and price points to please anyone.

Photo by Heami Lee, Prop Styling Miako Katoh

Under $25

Finding a Chardonnay that offers the balance, tension and weight that are hallmarks of the variety within a value price range is like striking gold. Domestic options from California, Oregon and Washington often deliver this in spades, with imports from Australia and Bulgaria rounding out the weekday white options.

Diora 2019 La Splendeur du Soleil Chardonnay (Monterey); $20. Buy on Excellently presented aromas of butter, nectarine, warm almond and white flower are delicate but expressive on the nose of this bottling. An immediate acidity races through the palate, lifting the toasty and buttery elements while pairing smartly… SEE SCORE AND FULL REVIEW

Jax 2020 Y3 Chardonnay (Napa Valley); $20. Buy on in concrete tank and aged nearly a year in neutral oak, this wine is crisp and compelling in acidity, with lasting freshness. Apple, lemon and an inviting undertow of baking spice…SEE SCORE AND FULL REVIEW

L’Ecole No. 41 2020 Chardonnay (Columbia Valley); $21. Buy on L’Ecole has made its name in large part on its reds in recent years, but the whites are not to be missed. Aromas of cream, yellow apple and toasty spice lead to medium-bodied flavors that linger…SEE SCORE AND FULL REVIEW

Luke 2020 Chardonnay (Ancient Lakes); $21. Find on Wine-Searcher. Fruit for this wine comes from Evergreen Vineyard. The aromas offer notes of apple, pear, talc, corn husk and French…SEE SCORE AND FULL REVIEW