Chardonnay, like other wines, is a type of wine which takes the name of a grape. The Chardonnay grape is a green grape, unlike Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and Pinot Noir grapes which are purplish blue grapes. The Chardonnay grape is used to make Chardonnay wines, of course, but it’s also used to create sparkling wines and Champagne.
“Chardonnay is a versatile grape. In cold regions such as Chablis, it shows crisp acidity and flavours of green hay with the flinty notes typical of the terroir – the wine even has a green tinge. Just 100 miles south, in the Côte de Beaune, the white Burgundies are much riper and richer, reflecting warmer conditions and the increasing use of oak.” (wikipedia)
Much like Merlot, Chardonnay has increased in popularity due to a “fad” or stereotype where we think young urban women are supposed to be Chardonnay drinkers. This stereotype probably lead to great sales of the wine and its standardization into our cultures in the United States. “In 2004 Chardonnay was estimated to be the world’s 6th most grown grape variety, covering 179 300 hectares,” says Jancis Mary Robinson. The 1990’s was rich in Chardonnay as it grew even more popular so vineyards started planting Chardonnay to keep up, but alas, red wines started to become the next fad.
A type and style of wine seems to change almost as quickly as the next social networking website. It takes one hit movie or popular personality to start a trend and wine drinking may not be much different. People don’t seem to be loyal to any one brand or any one specific style of wine, although many drinkers prefer red or white they may switch up their style like a beer drinker may change from a wheat, brown or a dark stout.
In season 2 of Frasier, Frasier Crane mentions that Chardonnay is his favorite wine, perhaps that started a new Chardonnay wine generation? All that I know, most of the women in my family prefer Chardonnay while the men prefer beer or a good red wine. Odd, how stereotypes work, isn’t it?