Rutherford Ranch Napa Chardonnay 2017

Chardonnay remains the most-planted variety in California (29% of all wine grapes, compared with 22% for runner-up cabernet sauvignon), and with good reason: People like it. The Rutherford Ranch Napa Chardonnay 2017 ($19) is an exemplar of what lures so many consumers. It’s rich, ripe and spicy, with just enough toast to signify a deft touch with the oak. It’s creamy on the midpalate but a bit racy on the finish, with an array of fresh and baked-fruit flavors playing off one another. Bottom line: Style-wise, this wine punches well above its price class. Grilled fish or fowl are particularly swell accompaniments, as is a platter of sundry cheeses.

Available at MGM Minnetonka, Navarre, Cash Wise Owatonna, Scandia Old Towne and Lake­ville, Savage and Appleton munis.

Bill Ward