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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 was born in Croatia and later 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.

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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  • Turley Spenker Zinfandel 1997
    Zinfandel from California
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    • Turley Old Vines Zinfandel 1997
      Zinfandel from California
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      • Firestone Old Vine Zinfandel 1997
        Zinfandel from California
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        • EOS Zinfandel 1997 Front Label
          EOS Zinfandel 1997
          Zinfandel from Central Coast, California
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          • Sebastiani Domenici Zinfandel 1997 Front Label
            Sebastiani Domenici Zinfandel 1997
            Zinfandel from Sonoma County, California
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            • Rabbit Ridge Sonoma Zinfandel 1997 Front Label
              Rabbit Ridge Sonoma Zinfandel 1997
              Zinfandel from Sonoma County, California
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            • Turley Moore Earthquake Zinfandel (scuffed label) 1997 Front Label
              Turley Moore Earthquake Zinfandel (scuffed label) 1997
              Zinfandel from Napa Valley, California
              • RP96
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            • Ravenswood Monte Rosso Zinfandel 1997
              Zinfandel from Sonoma Valley, Sonoma County, California
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              • Ravenswood Barricia Vineyard Zinfandel 1997  Front Label
                Ravenswood Barricia Vineyard Zinfandel 1997
                Zinfandel from Sonoma County, California
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                • CK Mondavi Zinfandel 1997
                  Zinfandel from California
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                  • Bonverre Zinfandel 1997
                    Zinfandel from Napa Valley, California
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                    • Steele Shooting Star Zinfandel 1997 Front Label
                      Steele Shooting Star Zinfandel 1997
                      Zinfandel from California
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                      • Clos Du Val Zinfandel 1997 Front Label
                        Clos Du Val Zinfandel 1997
                        Zinfandel from California
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                        • Napa Ridge Zinfandel 1997
                          Zinfandel from California
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                          • Villa Mt. Eden Old Vines Zinfandel 1997 Front Label
                            Villa Mt. Eden Old Vines Zinfandel 1997
                            Zinfandel from California
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                            • Kunde Estate Zinfandel 1997 Front Label
                              Kunde Estate Zinfandel 1997
                              Zinfandel from Sonoma County, California
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                              • Villa Mt. Eden Old Vines Zinfandel 1997 Front Label
                                Villa Mt. Eden Old Vines Zinfandel 1997
                                Zinfandel from California
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                                • Baron Herzog Zinfandel (OU Kosher) 1997 Front Label
                                  Baron Herzog Zinfandel (OU Kosher) 1997
                                  Zinfandel from California
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                                  • Dynamite Vineyards Evangelho Old Vines Zinfandel 1997 Front Label
                                    Dynamite Vineyards Evangelho Old Vines Zinfandel 1997
                                    Zinfandel from Sonoma County, California
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                                    • Kempton Clark M.A.D. Zinfandel 1997 Front Label
                                      Kempton Clark M.A.D. Zinfandel 1997
                                      Zinfandel from California
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                                      • Beaulieu Vineyard BV Coastal Estates Zinfandel 1997 Front Label
                                        Beaulieu Vineyard BV Coastal Estates Zinfandel 1997
                                        Zinfandel from California
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                                        • Rodney Strong Old Vines Zinfandel 1997 Front Label
                                          Rodney Strong Old Vines Zinfandel 1997
                                          Zinfandel from Sonoma County, California
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                                          • Fetzer Home Ranch Zinfandel 1997
                                            Zinfandel from North Coast, California
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                                            • Gundlach Bundschu Rhinefarm Estate Zinfandel 1997 Front Label
                                              Gundlach Bundschu Rhinefarm Estate Zinfandel 1997
                                              Zinfandel from Sonoma County, California
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                                              • Franciscan Estate Zinfandel 1997
                                                Zinfandel from Napa Valley, California
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