Some recent discoveries in molecular biology have rewritten the genetic provenance of Chardonnay, identifying its parents as Pinot nero, a native grape variety in the Reno basin, and the Gouais, which comes instead from Pannonia or Dalmatia.
At least three types of Chardonnay wine are acknowledged in the world, which are the result of varied interactions with the environment and precise winemaking choices. The wine produced in fresh-temperate temperature regions, made in steel and barriques, has good acidity and fruity and floral aromas. It is fairly concentrated with an aftertaste of hazelnut and ages well. In warmer areas citrusy aromas become manifest, with intense flavours bearing an aftertaste of hazelnut and toast. In southern Italian areas, especially in Sicily, Chardonnay gains interesting similarities with its Australian and Californian counterparts.
It is a cultivar with many advantages (having few climate and soil requirements and easy to grow), although it does have some serious faults, such as susceptibility to flavescence dorée, certain viroses and Pierce’s disease, albeit only in California.