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Wines made from the Zinfandel grape range from fruity and light bodied to tannic and full bodied. The vine is extremely resilient to the elements and often resembles a small tree rather than a typical grape vine. The Zinfandel grape has high acidity, tannins and sugars.

California Zinfandel makes up over 10% of the wine sold in the United States. Much of this is White Zinfandel, but an increasing amount is high-quality red versions. Though it originated in Europe, it has been adopted as America’s grape.

The European origins of Zinfandel have long been shrouded in mystery. But modern research techniques have found that it is a mutation of Italy’s Primitivo varietal, which itself is descended from the Croatian Crljenak grape. Some experts believe that Crljenak was brought to Dalmatia from Ancient Greece.

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