Primary: Flavors directly from the grapes differ greatly depending on the growing environment of the vineyard.
Cool Climate: Green apples / Just ripe pears, lemon / lime citrus leading to high, pucker-worthy acidity with fresh, crisp finish
Moderate Climate: Slightly richer wines with medium body and well balanced acidity balanced by tropical fruits, mostly pineapple
Warm Climate: Uber ripe peaches to baked apple pie, with moderate to low acidity keeping things in balance. The perfect, rich dessert without being sweet.
Secondary: Influences from fermentation in oak barrels, malolactic fermentation and / or exposure to lees (autolysis) result in more flavor complexity:
Oak – vanilla, baking spices, coconut
Malolactic Fermentation – butter, cream
Lees – bread, dough, yogurt this is preferred spelling in Americas—yoghurt more common in Europe
Tertiary: Aging can add additional flavor and body to Chardonnay, with oak barrels imparting smoke, vanilla and coconut influences. Bottle aging can even bring out flavors in the tree nut family and earthy flavors like mushrooms.
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