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Zinfandel

Learn about Zinfandel — taste profile, popular regions and more ...

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Unapologetically bold, spice-driven and jammy, Zinfandel is often thought of as California’s flagship grape. In fact it owns this title by having the ability to adapt to the states’ many microclimates and landscapes, producing unique expressions of the grape throughout. Zinfandel thrives in California’s Central Coast, as well throughout Sonoma County, parts of Napa Valley, the Sierra Foothills, Lodi and Paso Robles.

Zinfandel's story begins in Croatia in the 1400s when it went by the names, Tribidrag or Crljenak Kaštelanski. In the 1700s, it made its way to southern Italy where it became known as Primitivo. The astute imperial nursery of Vienna collected specimens of the vine and acted as the source of its journey to New England, carried by George Gibbs circa 1829. Eventually, making its way to California around the Gold Rush of 1849, Zinfandel found its new home, parading the true American spirit. The modern spelling of Zinfandel first appeared in 1852 and became standard about a decade later.

Tasting Notes for Zinfandel

Zinfandel is a dry red wine, though typically forward in fruit. Notes of dark plum, blackberry, sweet spice, dark chocolate and licorice are common. Very ripe examples may express a dried fruit quakity like fig or prune. But Zinfandel grown in cooler, coastal zones often shows red fruit, black pepper and fresh herbal characteristics like juniper and menthol.

Perfect Food Pairings for Zinfandel

Zinfandel is a powerfully flavored wine, mingling happily with bold food like brisket, lamb shanks, pork ribs or anything barbecued. More delicate Zins work with pork, lamb curry and even Ceasar Salad or Salad Nicoise.

Sommelier Secrets for Zinfandel

Thanks to its popularity both for home winemaking and as communion wine, many Zinfandel vines were able to survive prohibition, leading to the abundance of "old vine" Zinfandels. These low-yielding, ancient vines tend to produce wine that is deeply concentrated, delicately perfumed and decidedly complex.

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  • Rombauer California Zinfandel 2018  Front Label
    Rombauer California Zinfandel 2018
    Zinfandel from California
    • JD91
    4.5 192 Ratings
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  • Seghesio Sonoma Zinfandel 2019  Front Label
    Seghesio Sonoma Zinfandel 2019
    Zinfandel from Sonoma County, California
    • WW90
    • JD90
    4.0 19 Ratings
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  • Seghesio Sonoma Zinfandel (375ML half-bottle) 2018  Front Label
    Seghesio Sonoma Zinfandel (375ML half-bottle) 2018
    Zinfandel from Sonoma County, California
    • WW90
    • WE90
    • WS90
    4.2 23 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $18.99
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  • The Prisoner Wine Company Saldo Zinfandel 2019  Front Label
    The Prisoner Wine Company Saldo Zinfandel 2019
    Zinfandel from California
    • WW93
    4.4 58 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $28.99
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  • Hartford Russian River Old Vine Zinfandel 2019  Front Label
    Hartford Russian River Old Vine Zinfandel 2019
    Zinfandel from Russian River, Sonoma County, California
    • JD94
    • WE93
    • RP91
    4.2 10 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $37.99
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  • St. Francis Old Vines Zinfandel 2018  Front Label
    St. Francis Old Vines Zinfandel 2018
    Zinfandel from Sonoma County, California
    • WS91
    • WW90
    4.0 41 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $26.99
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  • OZV Old Vine Zinfandel 2019  Front Label
    OZV Old Vine Zinfandel 2019
    Zinfandel from Lodi, California
    • TP90
    4.1 14 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $12.99
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  • Paul Dolan Vineyards Organically Grown Zinfandel 2019  Front Label
    Paul Dolan Vineyards Organically Grown Zinfandel 2019
    Zinfandel from Mendocino, California
    • WW90
    • WE90
    4.0 172 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $17.99
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  • Oakville Winery Estate Zinfandel 2018  Front Label
    Oakville Winery Estate Zinfandel 2018
    Zinfandel from Oakville, Napa Valley, California
    • WW90
    3.9 22 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $27.99
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  • Ridge East Bench Zinfandel 2019  Front Label
    Ridge East Bench Zinfandel 2019
    Zinfandel from Dry Creek Valley, Sonoma County, California
    • JD95
    • JS94
    • WW92
    • CG90
    4.3 22 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $36.99
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  • Scott Harvey Mountain Selection Zinfandel 2018  Front Label
    Scott Harvey Mountain Selection Zinfandel 2018
    Zinfandel from Amador, Sierra Foothills, California
    • WE93
    • WW91
    0.0 0 Ratings
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  • Ridge Paso Robles Zinfandel 2019  Front Label
    Ridge Paso Robles Zinfandel 2019
    Zinfandel from Paso Robles, Central Coast, California
    • JS94
    • WS93
    • WW92
    • JD92
    4.1 21 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $36.99
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  • Kokomo  Zinfandel 2018  Front Label
    Kokomo Zinfandel 2018
    Zinfandel from Dry Creek Valley, Sonoma County, California
    • WS92
    • WE90
    4.2 12 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $33.99
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  • Three Wine Company Live Oak Zinfandel 2016  Front Label
    Three Wine Company Live Oak Zinfandel 2016
    Zinfandel from San Francisco Bay, Central Coast, California
    • WE92
    0.0 0 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $33.99
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  • Scott Harvey Old Vine Reserve Zinfandel 2018  Front Label
    Scott Harvey Old Vine Reserve Zinfandel 2018
    Zinfandel from Amador, Sierra Foothills, California
    • WW91
    • WE90
    0.0 0 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $32.99
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  • Zinfandelic Sierra Foothills Old Vine Zinfandel 2017  Front Label
    Zinfandelic Sierra Foothills Old Vine Zinfandel 2017
    Zinfandel from Sierra Foothills, California
    • TP91
    • WE90
    3.8 234 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $16.99
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  • Dry Creek Vineyard Heritage Zinfandel 2019  Front Label
    Dry Creek Vineyard Heritage Zinfandel 2019
    Zinfandel from Sonoma County, California
    • JD92
    • WW91
    4.0 27 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $27.99
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    27 99
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  • Ancient Peaks Paso Robles Zinfandel 2018  Front Label
    Ancient Peaks Paso Robles Zinfandel 2018
    Zinfandel from Santa Margarita Ranch, Paso Robles, Central Coast, California
    • WE91
    • WW90
    3.6 28 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $22.99
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  • Bedrock Wine Company California Old Vine Zinfandel 2019  Front Label
    Bedrock Wine Company California Old Vine Zinfandel 2019
    Zinfandel from California
    • JD92
    3.9 24 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $29.99
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  • Zinfandelic Lodi Zinfandel 2018  Front Label
    Zinfandelic Lodi Zinfandel 2018
    Zinfandel from Lodi, California
    • WE90
    3.6 132 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $16.99
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  • Acre Zinfandel 2017  Front Label
    Acre Zinfandel 2017
    Zinfandel from Napa Valley, California
    • WE90
    4.5 12 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $32.99
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  • Grgich Hills Estate Zinfandel 2015  Front Label
    Grgich Hills Estate Zinfandel 2015
    Zinfandel from Napa Valley, California
    • WW90
    4.4 16 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $39.99
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  • Scott Harvey InZINerator Zinfandel 2018  Front Label
    Scott Harvey InZINerator Zinfandel 2018
    Zinfandel from Amador, Sierra Foothills, California
    • WE91
    • WW90
    3.6 21 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $19.99
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  • Tortoise Creek Zinfandel 2018 Front Label
    Tortoise Creek Zinfandel 2018
    Zinfandel from Lodi, California
    • WW90
    3.3 33 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $14.99
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  • Three Wine Company Old Vines Zinfandel 2016  Front Label
    Three Wine Company Old Vines Zinfandel 2016
    Zinfandel from San Francisco Bay, Central Coast, California
    • WE90
    4.1 9 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $25.99
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    25 99
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