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A Place Called Chardonnay

One of the historic, tiny villages in the Mâconnais region of Burgundy is called Chardonnay. The name is derived from the Latin cardonnacum, which in turn comes from carduus, “a place with thistles.” Interestingly, during the Roman era, a nobleman named Cardus is also thought to have owned the area where the village now exists. The village of Chardonnay and the surrounding Mâconnais region may indeed be where chardonnay was born as a natural crossing. DNA typing reveals chardonnay’s parents to be the red grape pinot noir and the white grape gouais blanc.

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