Chardonnays from France, South Africa & USA

I didn’t taste these side by side, but I’ve ended up giving them all similar marks – would happily drink them all, but none had me jumping out of my seat and shouting ‘Whoopee!’

Vergelegen ChardVergelegen Premium Chardonnay 2013, Stellenbosch, South Africa (£12.49 Majestic, Roberts and Speight, Stewart Wines, Liquid Treasure, Noble Green Wines, Hailsham Cellars, Polygon Wines, Taylor Fine Wines, SA Wines online, Bodnant Welsh Food, SH Jones, Grape Sense, Trinas Wines, Bashall Barn, Swift Wines, Partridges, The Market Square Food and Wine Company, Oxford Wine Company)
While I like the restrained pithy citrus and melon flavours tinged with note of cashew, and the subtle use of oak, I find this just a little ‘safe’ for real class. Good, but no sparks. B+

KJ ChardKendall-Jackson Vintner’s Reserve Chardonnay 2013, California (£16.99 Robert and Speight, Last Drop Wines, Portland Wine, R Campbells, Taste Fine Wine, Mumbles Wine, Bacchanalia, Remarkable Wines, F Dine Wines of Mayfield, Hoults, Ann et Vin, Taylors Fine Wines, Partridges, Latitude Wines, The Market Square Food and Wine Company, SH Jones, Bodnant Welsh Food)
Toasty oak then peaches and cream, nectarine too, this is fresh and honest, a bit of a bimbo but an attractive bimbo nonetheless. Better than I remember it being but not a £17 bottle. B

Marimar Masia ChardMarimar Torres La Masía Chardonnay 2013, Russian River Valley, California (Try Wine Searcher for stockists)
A buttery edge to gentle apple, pear and ripe pineapple, doesn’t seem as vulgar as some vintages, good fleshy flavour, just a bit simple. B+

Bouchard Beaune BlancBouchard Père & Fils Beaune du Château Premier Cru Blanc 2013, Burgundy, France (£27.99 Waitrose, Bubbles & Wine, Cambridge Wine Merchants, Taylor’s Fine Wine, Shenfield Wine, The Wine Shop (Leek), Village Wines (Bexley), Clifton Cellars, Lindley Fine Wines, In The Pink, Chislehurst Wines, Liquorice, Milford Wines)
Very forward style, with a rich, honey and honeysuckle character to the plump ripe apple and pineapple flavours. But maybe too obvious, and not helped by a slightly cabbage/vegetal edge. B+

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