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Zinfandel Wine

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. Small quantities of Zinfandel grapes grow in countries as disparate as Mexico, Israel, South Africa, Canada, and Australia. Washington and Oregon produce Zinfandel grapes as well. In Croatia, production increased dramatically in 2001 once the news hit of the connection with Zinfandel grapes and Primitivo. From an early discovery of 22 vines, there are now more than 200,000. In Puglia about 10,000 acres exist. In California, Zinfandel is the second most-planted red grape, after Cabernet Sauvignon, with more than 50,000 acres, and it has been around since the 1850’s at least.

Zinfandel History

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 quality 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. California versions often show blueberry, raspberry, boysenberry, and peach yogurt flavors. Pepper, spice and a brambly character commonly make an appearance as well.

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 Caesar 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. Old to very old Zinfandel grape vines are prized, even though they produce smaller amounts of fruit. The wines made from such gnarly old stumps are avidly sought after. Whatever you call it, Zinfandel is a wine worth exploring.

Coming Soon: Regions Map. This is not a final layout.
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        30 Items
        • Turley Old Vines Zinfandel 2006 Front Label
          Turley Old Vines Zinfandel 2006
          Zinfandel from California
          • RP90
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        • Turley Hayne Zinfandel 2006 Front Label
          Turley Hayne Zinfandel 2006
          Zinfandel from Napa Valley, California
          • RP93
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        • Turley Mead Ranch Zinfandel 2006 Front Label
          Turley Mead Ranch Zinfandel 2006
          Zinfandel from Napa Valley, California
          • RP91
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        • Turley Dusi Zinfandel 2006 Front Label
          Turley Dusi Zinfandel 2006
          Zinfandel from Central Coast, California
          • RP93
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        • Turley Moore Earthquake Zinfandel 2006 Front Label
          Turley Moore Earthquake Zinfandel 2006
          Zinfandel from Napa Valley, California
          • WS91
          • RP90
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        • Edmeades Mendocino Zinfandel 2006 Front Label
          Edmeades Mendocino Zinfandel 2006
          Zinfandel from North Coast, California
          • RP90
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        • Martinelli Jackass Vineyard Zinfandel 2006 Front Label
          Martinelli Jackass Vineyard Zinfandel 2006
          Zinfandel from Sonoma County, California
          • RP94
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        • Trentadue La Storia Zinfandel 2006 Front Label
          Trentadue La Storia Zinfandel 2006
          Zinfandel from Sonoma County, California
          • RP90
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        • Marietta Angeli Cuvee 2006 Front Label
          Marietta Cellars Angeli Cuvee 2006
          Zinfandel from Sonoma County, California
          • RP93
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        • Turley Cedarman Zinfandel 2006 Front Label
          Turley Cedarman Zinfandel 2006
          Zinfandel from Howell Mountain, Napa Valley, California
          • RP92
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          74 99
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        • Carlisle Rossi Ranch Zinfandel 2006 Front Label
          Carlisle Rossi Ranch Zinfandel 2006
          Zinfandel from Sonoma Valley, Sonoma County, California
          • RP94
          • WS90
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        • Turley Salvador Zinfandel 2006 Front Label
          Turley Salvador Zinfandel 2006
          Zinfandel from Central Coast, California
          • RP92
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        • Turley Rattlesnake Ridge Zinfandel 2006 Front Label
          Turley Rattlesnake Ridge Zinfandel 2006
          Zinfandel from Napa Valley, California
          • RP91
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        • Williams Selyem Feeney Vineyard Zinfandel 2006 Front Label
          Williams Selyem Feeney Vineyard Zinfandel 2006
          Zinfandel from Russian River, Sonoma County, California
          • RP92
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          79 99
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        • Hartford Fanucchi-Wood Road Zinfandel 2006 Front Label
          Hartford Fanucchi-Wood Road Zinfandel 2006
          Zinfandel from California
          • RP94
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        • Martinelli Giuseppe and Luisa Zinfandel 2006 Front Label
          Martinelli Giuseppe and Luisa Zinfandel 2006
          Zinfandel from Russian River, Sonoma County, California
          • RP95
          • WS90
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        • Williams Selyem Forchini Vineyard Zinfandel 2006 Front Label
          Williams Selyem Forchini Vineyard Zinfandel 2006
          Zinfandel from Russian River, Sonoma County, California
          • RP92
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        • Carlisle Montafi Ranch Zinfandel 2006 Front Label
          Carlisle Montafi Ranch Zinfandel 2006
          Zinfandel from Russian River, Sonoma County, California
          • RP94
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        • Carlisle Carlisle Vineyard Zinfandel 2006 Front Label
          Carlisle Carlisle Vineyard Zinfandel 2006
          Zinfandel from Russian River, Sonoma County, California
          • RP93
          • WS92
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        • Turley Ueberroth Zinfandel 2006 Front Label
          Turley Ueberroth Zinfandel 2006
          Zinfandel from Paso Robles, Central Coast, California
          • RP95
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        • Joel Gott Zinfandel 2006 Front Label
          Joel Gott Zinfandel 2006
          Zinfandel from California
          • RP90
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        • Turley Dragon Zinfandel 2006 Front Label
          Turley Dragon Zinfandel 2006
          Zinfandel from Napa Valley, California
          • RP93
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        • Turley Vineyard 101 Zinfandel 2006 Front Label
          Turley Vineyard 101 Zinfandel 2006
          Zinfandel from Sonoma County, California
          • RP93
          • WS90
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          68 99
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        • Rancho Zabaco Toreador Zinfandel 2006 Front Label
          Rancho Zabaco Toreador Zinfandel 2006
          Zinfandel from Sonoma County, California
          • RP90
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          49 99
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        • Turley Tofanelli Zinfandel 2006 Front Label
          Turley Tofanelli Zinfandel 2006
          Zinfandel from Napa Valley, California
          • RP93
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          Currently Unavailable $85.97
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          85 97
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