Legends of California Chardonnay

Winemakers who raised the bar for the Golden State’s star white grape

Legends of California Chardonnay
Thanks to these and other winemaking pioneers, California Chardonnay has developed into one of the most popular and well-made wines in the country. (Joe McKendry)
From the Jul 31, 2022, issue

It’s a Golden Age for Golden State Chardonnay. A high bar for quality has been set, and there are more outstanding- and classic-scoring bottlings than ever. The wines—whether distinctive single-vineyards or inspired regional blends—show exquisite balance between elegance and power. It’s no wonder that Chardonnay is the most popular white wine in the United States. Read on for Wine Spectator's spotlight on seven winemakers—including Mark Aubert, Paul Hobbs, Steve Kistler, John Kongsgaard, David Ramey, Helen Turley and the late Richard Graff—who have had the biggest influence on California Chardonnay.

Member-Only Content

Premium Subscription

Join today and get immediate access to this article, and to our entire database of more than 400,000 wine ratings. It only takes moments—but it will help you drink better all year long.

Start Free 30-day Trial

Already a member? Sign In

You Might Also Like

Zachary Kameron’s High-Elevation Wine Program

Zachary Kameron’s High-Elevation Wine Program

At Peak, the wine director has built a world-class list at the top of New York City’s 30 …

Jul 26, 2022
Southern Italian Hospitality and Falanghina

Southern Italian Hospitality and Falanghina

Mustilli’s resurrection of a signature white

Jul 19, 2022
Mark Lyon's Staying Power

Mark Lyon's Staying Power

The Sonoma winemaking vet talks about discovering wine, building his career at Sebastiani …

Jul 15, 2022
Alex Cuper Homes in on South American Wines in the Windy City

Alex Cuper Homes in on South American Wines in the Windy City

The Chicago beverage director talks about his decision to put Malbec on the front, middle …

Jul 13, 2022
Wine Talk: Trisha Yearwood

Wine Talk: Trisha Yearwood

Heading to Napa for a music festival, the country music star and cookbook author talks with …

Jul 8, 2022
The Palmer Principle

The Palmer Principle

All American chef Charlie Palmer steps out of the kitchen to talk about food, wine, …

Aug 31, 2022