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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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  • Lake Sonoma Winery Dry Creek Valley Zinfandel 2009 Front Bottle Shot
    Lake Sonoma Winery Dry Creek Valley Zinfandel 2009
    Zinfandel from Dry Creek Valley, Sonoma County, California
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      19 99
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    • Zinfandelic Amador County Old Vine Zinfandel 2009 Front Label
      Zinfandelic Amador County Old Vine Zinfandel 2009
      Zinfandel from Sierra Foothills, California
        4.6 12 Ratings
        Currently Unavailable $15.99
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        19
        15 99
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      • Valley of the Moon Zinfandel 2009 Front Bottle Shot
        Valley of the Moon Zinfandel 2009
        Zinfandel from Sonoma County, California
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          Currently Unavailable $12.99
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          16 99
          12 99
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        • Turley Old Vines Zinfandel 2009 Front Label
          Turley Old Vines Zinfandel 2009
          Zinfandel from California
          • RP91
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          Currently Unavailable $57.99
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          57 99
          57 99
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        • Cline Live Oak Zinfandel 2009 Front Label
          Cline Live Oak Zinfandel 2009
          Zinfandel from California
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            Currently Unavailable $25.99
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            30
            25 99
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          • Ridge East Bench Zinfandel 2009 Front Label
            Ridge East Bench Zinfandel 2009
            Zinfandel from Sonoma County, California
            • WE92
            0.0 0 Ratings
            Currently Unavailable $34.99
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            34 99
            34 99
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          • Seghesio Old Vine Zinfandel 2009 Front Label
            Seghesio Old Vine Zinfandel 2009
            Zinfandel from Sonoma County, California
            • WE94
            • WS92
            0.0 0 Ratings
            Currently Unavailable $29.99
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            38
            29 99
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          • DeLoach Russian River Zinfandel 2009 Front Label
            DeLoach Russian River Zinfandel 2009
            Zinfandel from Russian River, Sonoma County, California
            • W&S90
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            20
            16 99
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          • Ravenswood Lodi Old Vine Zinfandel 2009 Front Label
            Ravenswood Lodi Old Vine Zinfandel 2009
            Zinfandel from California
              0.0 0 Ratings
              Currently Unavailable $15.95
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              18
              15 95
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            • Four Vines Biker Paso Robles Zinfandel 2009 Front Label
              Four Vines Biker Paso Robles Zinfandel 2009
              Zinfandel from Paso Robles, Central Coast, California
              • JS90
              3.9 18 Ratings
              Currently Unavailable $23.99
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              23 99
              23 99
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            • Turley Fredericks Vineyard Zinfandel 2009 Front Label
              Turley Fredericks Vineyard Zinfandel 2009
              Zinfandel from Sonoma Valley, Sonoma County, California
              • RP93
              0.0 0 Ratings
              Currently Unavailable $69.99
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              69 99
              69 99
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            • Seghesio Home Ranch Zinfandel 2009 Front Label
              Seghesio Home Ranch Zinfandel 2009
              Zinfandel from Sonoma County, California
              • WS95
              0.0 0 Ratings
              Currently Unavailable $39.99
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              39 99
              39 99
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            • St. Francis Old Vines Zinfandel 2009 Front Label
              St. Francis Old Vines Zinfandel 2009
              Zinfandel from Sonoma County, California
              • W&S91
              3.9 12 Ratings
              Currently Unavailable $18.99
              Try the 2017 Vintage 19 99
              22 99
              18 99
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            • Mietz Cellars Dry Creek Zinfandel 2009 Front Label
              Mietz Cellars Dry Creek Zinfandel 2009
              Zinfandel from Dry Creek Valley, Sonoma County, California
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                Currently Unavailable $13.99
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                25
                13 99
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              • Trentadue La Storia Zinfandel 2009 Front Label
                Trentadue La Storia Zinfandel 2009
                Zinfandel from Sonoma County, California
                  0.0 0 Ratings
                  Currently Unavailable $19.99
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                  28
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                • Williams Selyem Forchini Vineyard South Knoll Zinfandel 2009 Front Label
                  Williams Selyem Forchini Vineyard South Knoll Zinfandel 2009
                  Zinfandel from Russian River, Sonoma County, California
                  • WE92
                  • W&S90
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                  Currently Unavailable $79.99
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                  79 99
                  79 99
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                • Williams Selyem Forchini Vineyard North Flats Zinfandel 2009 Front Label
                  Williams Selyem Forchini Vineyard North Flats Zinfandel 2009
                  Zinfandel from Russian River, Sonoma County, California
                  • RP91
                  • W&S90
                  0.0 0 Ratings
                  Currently Unavailable $79.99
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                  79 99
                  79 99
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                • Turley Rattlesnake Ridge Zinfandel 2009 Front Label
                  Turley Rattlesnake Ridge Zinfandel 2009
                  Zinfandel from Napa Valley, California
                  • RP94
                  • WS92
                  0.0 0 Ratings
                  Currently Unavailable $69.99
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                  69 99
                  69 99
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                • Sausal Winery Family Old Vine Estate Zinfandel 2009 Front Label
                  Sausal Winery Family Old Vine Estate Zinfandel 2009
                  Zinfandel from Sonoma County, California
                  • WS88
                  3.1 8 Ratings
                  Currently Unavailable $11.99
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                  20
                  11 99
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                • Decoy Zinfandel 2009 Front Label
                  Decoy Zinfandel 2009
                  Zinfandel from Sonoma County, California
                  • W&S91
                  3.6 8 Ratings
                  Currently Unavailable $19.99
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                  22
                  19 99
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                • Cline Ancient Vines Zinfandel 2009 Front Label
                  Cline Ancient Vines Zinfandel 2009
                  Zinfandel from California
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                    Currently Unavailable $19.99
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                    19 99
                    19 99
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                  • Cline Zinfandel 2009 Front Label
                    Cline Zinfandel 2009
                    Zinfandel from California
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                    • Folie a Deux Dry Creek Zinfandel 2009 Front Label
                      Folie a Deux Dry Creek Zinfandel 2009
                      Zinfandel from Dry Creek Valley, Sonoma County, California
                      • WS88
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                      Currently Unavailable $15.99
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                    • Terra d'Oro Deaver Ranch Old Vine Zinfandel 2009 Front Label
                      Terra d'Oro Deaver Ranch Old Vine Zinfandel 2009
                      Zinfandel from Sierra Foothills, California
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                        Currently Unavailable $22.99
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                        22 99
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                      • Baron Herzog Old Vine Zinfandel (OU Kosher) 2009 Front Label
                        Baron Herzog Old Vine Zinfandel (OU Kosher) 2009
                        Zinfandel from California
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                          Currently Unavailable $17.99
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