Wine 101: Zinfandel

Though Zinfandel is descended from the Croatian grape Crljenak, the wine it produces is entirely Californian in character. It’s usually brawny, smooth and richly flavored.

The California wine country’s warm, easygoing weather gives Zinfandel a jammy, juicy fruitiness (except when it’s made into dull, lightly sweet white Zinfandel). Typically high in both alcohol and flavor—boysenberries with a touch of brambly spiciness—Zinfandel is the perfect cookout wine, great with grilled burgers, sausages or chicken, or even chips and dip.

Intense, Fruity Zinfandel

Honey-Mustard Chicken

Top Bottles

  • Seghesio Sonoma (California)
  • Rancho Zabaco Sonoma Heritage Vines (California)
  • St. Francis Old Vines (California)
  • Green & Red Vineyard Chiles Canyon (California)

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Congratulations to Nicholas Elmi, winner of Top Chef: New Orleans, the 11th season of Bravo's Emmy-Award winning, hit reality series.

Run with chefs and wine experts in the Celebrity Chef 5K and dance all night at Gail Simmons’ Last Bite Dessert Party during the FOOD & WINE Classic in Aspen, June 20-22.