Full Review

Zinfatuation

Zinfatuation
2015 Zinfandel, Lodi

Pair this wine with:
Beef Turkey Vegetables

Category: Zinfandel

Date Tasted:
Country: USA
Alcohol: 13.9% RS: .3%
Bronze Medal
Recommended
$9.99

Zinfatuation
2015 Zinfandel, Lodi

Pair this wine with:
Beef Turkey Vegetables

Category: Zinfandel

Date Tasted:
Country: USA
Alcohol: 13.9% RS: .3%
Nearly opaque garnet black color. Aromas of cherry and cassis with a slightly chewy, bright, fruity light-to-medium body and a warming, short menthol and cherry jam, semisweet chocolate, and clove and smoked meats finish with crunchy tannins and light oak flavor. A lighter-bodied zin for quaffing.

Tasting Info

Wine Glass Style: Fruity, Oaky & Quaffable
Aroma Aroma: cherry and cassis
Taste Flavor: menthol and cherry jam, semisweet chocolate, and clove and smoked meats
Sweetness Sweetness: Fruity
Enjoy Enjoy: Now on its own
Recipes Pairing: Turkey Burger, Steak & Potatoes, Beef Stew
Bottom Line Bottom Line: A lighter-bodied zin for quaffing.

The Producer or Importer

Trinchero Family Estates

The Producer or  Importer
100 St. Helena Hwy South
St. Helena, CA 94574
USA
1 800-967-4663

Their Portfolio

87 A3 2016 Chardonnay, California 13% (USA) $7.99.
87 A3 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon, California 13.5% (USA) $7.99.
87 A3 2016 Red Blend, California 13.5% (USA) $7.99.
90 Avissi NV Prosecco DOC 11.5% (Italy) $16.99.
89 Avissi NV Prosecco DOC 11.5% (Italy) $15.99.
BR Bandit NV Pinot Grigio, California 13% (USA) $9.00. - Bronze Medal
BR Bandit NV Cabernet Sauvignon, California 13.5% (USA) $9.99. - Bronze Medal
BR Bandit NV Merlot, California 13% (USA) $9.99. - Bronze Medal
86 Bandit NV Chardonnay, California 13.7% (USA) $9.99.
BR Bandit NV Pinot Grigio, California 13% (USA) $9.99. - Bronze Medal
BR Bandit NV Red Blend, California 13% (USA) $9.99. - Bronze Medal
86 Bandit NV Cabernet Sauvignon, California 13.5% (USA) $9.99.
BR Bandit NV Merlot, California 13% (USA) $9.99. - Bronze Medal
BR Bandit NV Chardonnay, California 13% (USA) $9.99. - Bronze Medal
85 Bandit NV Pinot Grigio, California 13% (USA) $9.99.
85 Bandit NV Red Blend, California 13% (USA) $9.99.
86 Bandit NV Rosé, California 13% (USA) $9.99.
87 Bieler Pere & Fils 2016 Rose, Coteaux d’Aix en Provence 13% (France) $13.00.
86 Bite Hard Dry Apple Cider 6.9% (USA) $.00.
92 Bite Hard Semi Sweet Apple Cider 6.9% (USA) $.00.
86 Cabulous 2015 Cabernet Sauvignon, North Coast 13.5% (USA) $9.99.
88 Cabulous 2015 Cabernet Sauvignon, North Coast 13.5% (USA) $9.99.
90 California Dream 2016 Chardonnay, California 13% (USA) $5.96.
89 California Dream 2016 Pinot Grigio, California 13% (USA) $5.96.
85 California Dream 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon, California 13.5% (USA) $5.96.
85 California Dream 2016 Chardonnay, California 13.5% (USA) $5.96.
BR California Dream 2016 Merlot, California 13.5% (USA) $5.96. - Bronze Medal
BR California Dream 2016 Pinot Grigio, California 13.5% (USA) $5.96. - Bronze Medal
BR California Roots 2016 Chardonnay, California 13.5% (USA) $5.00. - Bronze Medal
87 California Roots 2015 Cabernet Sauvignon, California 13.5% (USA) $5.00.
89 California Roots 2016 Moscato, California 10% (USA) $5.00.
89 California Roots 2016 Pinot Grigio, California 13.5% (USA) $5.00.
BR California Roots 2015 Red Blend, California 13.5% (USA) $5.00. - Bronze Medal
85 California Roots 2017 Rosé, California 12.5% (USA) $5.00.
86 California Roots 2016 Chardonnay, California 13.5% (USA) $5.00.
BR California Roots 2016 Pinot Grigio, California 13.5% (USA) $5.00. - Bronze Medal
87 California Roots 2016 Red Blend, California 13.5% (USA) $5.00.
90 Carmen 2015 Gran Reserva, Carmenère, Colchagua Valley 14% (Chile) $19.99.
90 Carmen 2013 Gran Reserva, Cabernet Sauvignon, Maipo Valley 13.5% (Chile) $19.99.
89 Charles & Charles 2016 Rosé, Columbia Valley 12.3% (USA) $14.00.
BR Charles & Charles 2016 Rose, Columbia Valley 12.3% (USA) $12.00. - Bronze Medal
85 Dominant Seven 2015 Cabernet Sauvignon, California 13.5% (USA) $7.96.
BR Dominant Seven 2015 Red Blend, California 13.5% (USA) $7.96. - Bronze Medal
86 Dominant Seven 2015 Chardonnay, California 13.5% (USA) $7.96.
BR Doña Paula 2015 Estate, Cabernet Sauvignon, Luján de Cuyo 13.9% (Argentina) $19.99. - Bronze Medal
87 Doña Paula 2015 Estate, Malbec, Uco Valley 14.3% (Argentina) $19.99.
86 Doña Paula 2014 Estate Black Edition Red, Luján de Cuyo 14.1% (Argentina) $19.99.
85 Doña Paula 2016 Los Cardos, Sauvignon Blanc, Mendoza 11% (Argentina) $13.99.
86 Doña Paula 2016 Los Cardos, Chardonnay, Mendoza 11% (Argentina) $13.99.
85 Doña Paula 2017 Los Cardos, Malbec, Mendoza 13.5% (Argentina) $13.99.
86 Doña Paula 2017 Los Cardos, Cabernet Sauvignon, Mendoza 13.5% (Argentina) $13.99.
BR Doña Paula 2017 Los Cardos, Chardonnay, Mendoza 14% (Argentina) $13.99. - Bronze Medal
85 Doña Paula 2017 Los Cardos, Sauvignon Blanc, Mendoza 12.5% (Argentina) $13.99.
BR Doña Paula 2018 Rosé, Malbec, Mendoza 12% (Argentina) $15.99. - Bronze Medal
90 Echo Bay 2016 Sauvignon Blanc, Marlborough 13% (New Zealand) $17.99.
86 Echo Bay 2017 Sauvignon Blanc, Marlborough 13% (New Zealand) $18.99.
BR Eye Chart NV Pinot Noir, California 13.5% (USA) $12.99. - Bronze Medal
BR Eye Chart NV Red Blend, California 14.9% (USA) $12.99. - Bronze Medal
86 Hopes End 2016 Red Blend, South Australia 13.5% (Australia) $12.99.
90 Joel Gott 2015 Sauvignon Blanc, California 13.9% (USA) $12.00.
89 Joel Gott 2015 Pinot Gris, Willamette Valley 13.2% (USA) $16.00.
90 Joel Gott 2015 Zinfandel, California 14.4% (USA) $18.00.
88 Lucotto 2015 Pinot Grigio, Delle Venezie IGP 12.5% (Italy) $7.97.
86 Luxury Edition NV "Pink" Brut Sparkling Pinot Noir Rosé, Italy 11% (Italy) $14.97.
90 Luxury Edition NV "Gold", Prosecco DOC 11% (Italy) $14.97.
90 Ménage à Trois 2015 Sauvignon Blanc, California 13% (USA) $12.00.
86 Ménage à Trois 2015 Moscato, California 11% (USA) $12.00.
90 Ménage à Trois 2015 Pinot Grigio, California 13.5% (USA) $12.00.
87 Ménage à Trois 2015 White Blend, California 13.5% (USA) $10.00.
89 Ménage à Trois 2015 Zinfandel, Lodi 13.9% (USA) $14.00.
85 Ménage à Trois 2015 Rosé, California 13.5% (USA) $10.00.
BR Ménage à Trois 2015 Cabernet Sauvignon, North Coast 13.5% (USA) $14.00. - Bronze Medal
88 Ménage à Trois 2015 Folie À Deux Red Blend, California 13.5% (USA) $13.99.
88 Ménage à Trois 2015 Midnight Dark Blend, California 13.5% (USA) $13.99.
88 Ménage à Trois 2015 Silk Soft Red Blend, California 13.5% (USA) $13.99.
88 Ménage à Trois 2015 Cabernet Sauvignon, North Coast 13.5% (USA) $13.99.
89 Ménage à Trois 2015 Chardonnay, Central Coast 13.5% (USA) $11.99.
89 Ménage à Trois 2015 Gold, Chardonnay, California 14.8% (USA) $13.99.
86 Ménage à Trois 2014 Malbec, Mendoza 13% (Argentina) $13.99.
BR Ménage à Trois 2015 Merlot, California 13.5% (USA) $11.99. - Bronze Medal
85 Ménage à Trois 2015 Midnight Dark Red Blend, California 13.5% (USA) $13.99.
85 Ménage à Trois 2015 Moscato, California 11% (USA) $9.99.
89 Ménage à Trois 2015 Pinot Grigio, California 13.5% (USA) $11.99.
BR Ménage à Trois 2015 Pinot Noir, California 13.5% (USA) $13.99. - Bronze Medal
89 Ménage à Trois NV Prosecco DOC 11% (Italy) $14.99.
90 Ménage à Trois 2015 Red Blend, California 13.5% (USA) $11.99.
BR Ménage à Trois 2016 Rosé, California 13.5% (USA) $11.99. - Bronze Medal
87 Ménage à Trois 2015 Sauvignon Blanc, California 13% (USA) $11.99.
87 Ménage à Trois 2015 Silk Soft Red Blend, California 13.5% (USA) $13.99.
87 Ménage à Trois 2016 White Blend, California 13.5% (USA) $11.99.
BR Ménage à Trois 2015 Zinfandel, Lodi 13.5% (USA) $11.99. - Bronze Medal
86 Ménage à Trois 2017 Rosé, California 13.5% (USA) $11.99.
86 Ménage à Trois 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon, North Coast 13.5% (USA) $13.99.
89 Ménage à Trois 2016 Chardonnay, Central Coast 13.5% (USA) $11.99.
BR Ménage à Trois 2016 Gold, Chardonnay, California 14.2% (USA) $11.99. - Bronze Medal
86 Ménage à Trois 2017 Moscato, California 11% (USA) $9.99.
BR Ménage à Trois 2017 Pinot Grigio, California 13.5% (USA) $11.99. - Bronze Medal
86 Ménage à Trois 2016 Pinot Noir, California 13.5% (USA) $13.99.
BR Ménage à Trois 2017 Sauvignon Blanc, California 13% (USA) $11.99. - Bronze Medal
89 Ménage à Trois 2016 Decadence, Cabernet Sauvignon, California 13.5% (USA) $13.99.
87 Ménage à Trois 2016 Silk Soft Red Blend, California 13.5% (USA) $13.99.
85 Ménage à Trois 2016 Midnight Dark Red Blend, California 13.5% (USA) $13.99.
87 Ménage à Trois 2016 Red Blend, California 13.5% (USA) $11.99.
85 Ménage à Trois 2016 White Blend, California 13.5% (USA) $11.99.
86 Ménage à Trois 2016 Zinfandel, Lodi 13.5% (USA) $11.99.
86 Ménage à Trois 2016 Lavish, Merlot, California 13.8% (USA) $13.99.
87 Ménage à Trois 2017 Rosé, California 13.6% (USA) $11.99.
BR Ménage à Trois NV Sparkling Rosé, Italy 11% (Italy) $13.99. - Bronze Medal
90 Montevina 2015 Glass Falls, Pinot Grigio, California 13.5% (USA) $10.00.
88 Montevina 2014 Zinfandel, Amador County 14.5% (USA) $12.00.
89 Montevina 2015 Omira Hills, Chardonnay, California 13% (USA) $10.99.
87 Montevina 2015 Independence Point, Cabernet Sauvignon, California 13.5% (USA) $10.99.
88 Montevina 2015 Skyland Ridge, Zinfandel, Amador County 14.5% (USA) $11.99.
86 Montevina 2016 Glass Falls, Pinot Grigio, California 13.5% (USA) $10.99.
86 Montevina 2015 Independence Point, Cabernet Sauvignon, California 13.5% (USA) $12.00.
88 Montevina 2016 Skyland Ridge, Zinfandel, Amador County 14.5% (USA) $12.00.
86 Montevina 2016 Glass Falls, Pinot Grigio, California 13.5% (USA) $12.00.
90 Napa Cellars 2015 Sauvignon Blanc, Napa Valley 14.1% (USA) $18.00.
89 Newman’s Own 2015 Cabernet Sauvignon, California 13.5% (USA) $12.99.
86 Newman’s Own 2015 Chardonnay, California 13.5% (USA) $12.99.
BR Newman’s Own 2014 Common Good Red Blend, California 13.5% (USA) $12.99. - Bronze Medal
85 Pomelo 2017 Rosé, California 13% (USA) $13.99.
BR Pomelo 2016 Sauvignon Blanc, California 13% (USA) $13.99. - Bronze Medal
BR Pomelo 2016 Chardonnay, California 13.5% (USA) $13.99. - Bronze Medal
BR SeaGlass 2015 Sauvignon Blanc, Santa Barbara County 13.5% (USA) $12.00. - Bronze Medal
BR SeaGlass 2015 Riesling, Monterey County 13% (USA) $12.00. - Bronze Medal
92 SeaGlass 2016 Pinot Grigio, Santa Barbara County 13% (USA) $12.00.
90 SeaGlass 2016 Rosé, Monterey County 12.5% (USA) $12.00.
85 SeaGlass 2015 Chardonnay, Santa Barbara County 13.5% (USA) $11.99.
90 SeaGlass 2016 Sauvignon Blanc, Santa Barbara County 13.5% (USA) $11.99.
89 SeaGlass 2015 Pinot Noir, Santa Barbara County 13.5% (USA) $12.99.
88 SeaGlass 2016 Pinot Grigio, Santa Barbara County 13% (USA) $11.99.
BR SeaGlass 2016 Rosé, Monterey County 12.5% (USA) $11.99. - Bronze Medal
86 SeaGlass 2016 Riesling, Monterey County 13% (USA) $11.99.
87 SEAGLASS 2017 Rosé, Monterey County 12.5% (USA) $11.99.
89 SEAGLASS 2017 Off-Dry, Riesling, Monterey County 13% (USA) $11.99.
89 SEAGLASS 2017 Pinot Grigio, Santa Barbara County 13% (USA) $11.99.
89 SEAGLASS 2017 Sauvignon Blanc, Santa Barbara County 13.5% (USA) $11.99.
88 SEAGLASS 2016 Pinot Noir, Santa Barbara County 13.7% (USA) $12.99.
BR SEAGLASS 2017 Rosé, Monterey County 12.5% (USA) $11.99. - Bronze Medal
87 SEAGLASS 2016 Unoaked, Chardonnay, Santa Barbara County 13.5% (USA) $11.99.
86 Sutter Home NV Sauvignon Blanc, California 13.5% (USA) $.00.
87 Sutter Home NV Riesling, California 12.5% (USA) $.00.
89 Sutter Home NV Pinot Grigio, California 13% (USA) $.00.
89 Sutter Home NV Moscato, California 10% (USA) $.00.
92 Sutter Home NV Gewurztraminer, California 13% (USA) $.00.
86 Sutter Home NV Chenin Blanc, California 12% (USA) $.00.
86 Sutter Home NV Zinfandel, California 13.5% (USA) $6.00.
86 Sutter Home NV Red Blend, California 13.5% (USA) $7.99.
BR Sutter Home NV Bubbly Brut, California 12.5% (USA) $9.99. - Bronze Medal
85 Sutter Home NV Cabernet Sauvignon, California 13.5% (USA) $7.99.
85 Sutter Home NV Chardonnay, California 13% (USA) $7.99.
BR Sutter Home NV Chenin Blanc, California 12% (USA) $7.99. - Bronze Medal
87 Sutter Home NV Gewurztraminer, California 13% (USA) $7.99.
86 Sutter Home NV Malbec, Mendoza 13% (Argentina) $7.99.
BR Sutter Home NV Merlot, California 13% (USA) $7.99. - Bronze Medal
BR Sutter Home NV Moscato, California 10% (USA) $7.99. - Bronze Medal
85 Sutter Home NV Pink Moscato, California 10% (USA) $7.99.
85 Sutter Home NV Pinot Grigio, California 13% (USA) $7.99.
BR Sutter Home NV Pinot Noir, California 13% (USA) $7.99. - Bronze Medal
86 Sutter Home NV Red Blend, California 13.5% (USA) $7.99.
85 Sutter Home NV Riesling, California 12.5% (USA) $7.99.
89 Sutter Home NV Sauvignon Blanc, California 13.5% (USA) $7.99.
88 Sutter Home NV Sweet Red, California 12.5% (USA) $7.99.
85 Sutter Home NV White Merlot, California 11.5% (USA) $7.99.
BR Sutter Home NV White Zinfandel, California 9.5% (USA) $7.99. - Bronze Medal
87 Sutter Home NV Zinfandel, California 13.5% (USA) $7.99.
85 Sutter Home NV Rosé, California 12.5% (USA) $7.99.
BR Sutter Home NV White Zinfandel, California 9.5% (USA) $7.99. - Bronze Medal
86 Sutter Home NV Chardonnay, California 13% (USA) $7.99.
85 Sutter Home NV Merlot, California 13% (USA) $7.99.
88 Sutter Home NV Cabernet Sauvignon, California 13.5% (USA) $7.99.
BR Sutter Home NV Sauvignon Blanc, California 13.5% (USA) $7.99. - Bronze Medal
90 Sutter Home NV Zinfandel, California 13.5% (USA) $7.99.
88 Sutter Home NV Off-Dry, Riesling, California 12.5% (USA) $7.99.
BR Sutter Home NV Pinot Grigio, California 13% (USA) $7.99. - Bronze Medal
87 Sutter Home NV Pinot Noir, California 13.5% (USA) $7.99.
87 Sutter Home NV Red Blend, California 13.5% (USA) $7.99.
85 Sutter Home NV Off-Dry, Chenin Blanc, California 12% (USA) $7.99.
89 Sutter Home NV Off-Dry, Gewurztraminer, California 13% (USA) $7.99.
88 Sutter Home NV Moscato, California 10% (USA) $7.99.
86 Sutter Home NV Varietal Blends, Chardonnay-Moscato, California 12.5% (USA) $7.99.
86 Sutter Home NV Varietal Blends, Riesling-Moscato, California 10% (USA) $7.99.
85 Sutter Home NV Sweet Red Blend, California 12.5% (USA) $7.99.
BR Sutter Home NV Red Moscato, California 11% (USA) $7.99. - Bronze Medal
BR Sutter Home NV Rosé, California 12.5% (USA) $7.99. - Bronze Medal
BR Sutter Home NV Pink Moscato, California 10% (USA) $7.99. - Bronze Medal
88 Terra d’Oro 2016 Pinot Grigio, Clarksburg 13.5% (USA) $16.00.
88 Three Pears 2017 Pinot Grigio, California 13% (USA) $13.99.
85 Three Thieves 2015 Pinot Grigio, California 13.5% (USA) $8.00.
88 Three Thieves 2015 Cabernet Sauvignon, California 13.5% (USA) $10.99.
85 Three Thieves 2015 Pinot Noir, California 13.5% (USA) $10.99.
85 Three Thieves 2015 Red Blend, California 13.5% (USA) $10.99.
87 Three Thieves 2015 Pinot Grigio, California 13.5% (USA) $10.99.
87 Three Thieves 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon, California 13.5% (USA) $8.00.
85 Three Thieves 2016 Pinot Noir, California 13.5% (USA) $8.00.
85 Three Thieves 2016 Pinot Grigio, California 13.5% (USA) $8.00.
BR Three Thieves 2017 Rosé, California 13% (USA) $8.00. - Bronze Medal
87 Trinchero 2016 Mary’s Single Vineyard , Sauvignon Blanc, Napa Valley 14.2% (USA) $35.00.
87 Trinity Oaks 2015 Pinot Grigio, California 13.5% (USA) $9.00.
88 Trinity Oaks 2016 Chardonnay, California 13.6% (USA) $8.99.
85 Trinity Oaks 2015 Merlot, California 13% (USA) $8.99.
86 Trinity Oaks 2015 Cabernet Sauvignon, California 13% (USA) $8.99.
BR Trinity Oaks 2016 Pinot Grigio, California 13.5% (USA) $8.99. - Bronze Medal
88 Vintage Crush NV Cabernet Sauvignon, California 13.5% (USA) $4.96.
85 Vintage Crush NV Chardonnay, California 13% (USA) $4.96.
87 Vintage Crush NV Pinot Grigio, California 13% (USA) $4.96.
86 Vintage Crush NV Cabernet Sauvignon, California 13.5% (USA) $4.96.
86 Vintage Crush NV Chardonnay, California 13% (USA) $4.96.
BR Vintage Crush NV Merlot, California 13.5% (USA) $4.96. - Bronze Medal
88 Vintage Crush NV Pinot Grigio, California 13% (USA) $4.96.
88 Wine Cube 2016 Chardonnay, California 13% (USA) $17.99.
85 Wine Cube 2015 Red Blend, California 13% (USA) $17.99.
BR Wine Cube 2015 Merlot, California 13.6% (USA) $17.99. - Bronze Medal
85 Wine Cube 2016 Pinot Grigio, California 13.5% (USA) $17.99.
86 Wine Cube 2015 Pinot Noir, California 13.5% (USA) $17.99.
BR Wine Cube 2015 Riesling, California 12.5% (USA) $17.99. - Bronze Medal
89 Wine Cube 2016 Sauvignon Blanc, California 13% (USA) $17.99.
BR Wine Cube 2015 Dark Red Blend, California 13% (USA) $17.99. - Bronze Medal
BR Zinfatuation 2015 Zinfandel, Lodi 13.9% (USA) $9.99. - Bronze Medal

Zinfandel

Wine Glass Zinfandel.jpg
Serve in a Zinfandel Wine Glass
Zinfandel first came to American shores by way of the Schonbrunn collection which contained all the wine varietals grown in the Austrian empire. The earliest mention of Zinfandel, by name, in America was a vine nursery in Long Island in the 1820s. It made its way to California in the gold rush and thrived because of its hearty constitution and vigorous yields. Many a prospector had a little vineyard of Zinfandel and washed away their sorrows in their purple cups.

Zinfandel is California’s pride and joy, a zesty, spicy, alcoholic (often 15% or more) wine that fits in well with the frontier spirit of the Golden State. The grape is believed to be related to one or more varieties in Croatia, while in the southern Italian region of Puglia, Zinfandel is a name sometimes given to the Primitivo grape.

While there are excellent plantings of Zinfandel in may California regions, the districts of Lodi and Contra Costa County are very famous for this grape, especially as there are numerous “old vine” plantings that are often more than one hundred years of age. These vines produce tiny quantities, but the resulting wines are intensely spicy and brambly. Zinfandel has a good deal of natural tannin, so these wines can age well, as long as the winemaker can find the proper balance, not always an easy thing. Zinfandels from Ridge Vineyards, a celebrated producer in Santa Cruz County, are among the longest-lived and most refined examples.

Recommended foods for Zinfandel are grilled or barbecued meats, wild game and stews – the heartier, the better. White Zinfandel, not to be confused with Zinfandel (red) is a blush wine, generally lighter-bodied with moderate sweetness.

For a hundred years, zinfandel was the king of California reds. In 1884 it accounted for 40 percent of all the state's grape vines, but the grand old vineyards fell victim to modern economics and changing trends.

Luckily, a small band of dedicated producers, coupled with a near-fanatical cult following, have continued to hold out. Against all odds, the pendulum just might be poised to swing back.

So just what is it about these old vineyards that is helping to put zinfandel back on the map? The consensus seems to be that a vineyard reaches a qualitative peak between 25 and 50 years old. Because of prohibition, there are relatively few old vineyards in California. Of the state's 350,000 acres of vinifera, fewer than three percent are over 50 years old. The vast majority of these are devoted to zinfandel. While the percentage of cabernet vineyards exceeding even 25 years of age is minute, it is quite possible to sample the fruits of a fully mature zinfandel vineyard, often at half the price.

In addition, old vineyards inherently produce less fruit. This factor provides a natural limit on the vine's tendency to overproduce. Though a problem if quantity is the ultimate goal, it is an essential factor in the production of high-quality wines. With the price of cabernet rising so precipitously in the last few years, it has once again become economical for vintners to produce wine from shy-yielding old zinfandel vineyards; winemakers are scouring the state looking for the odd parcel of vines. Also, vintners have learned how well some of the old methods of pruning and farming have worked, and are seeking to apply these principles in new plantings.

Paul Draper, winemaker and CEO of Ridge Vineyards, summed up zinfandel's appeal best: "Zinfandel has so much forward fruit that it's sensual to drink right away. Its appeal is immediate, whereas cabernet needs time to develop. You can have a very sensual experience with cabernet, but you can have a comparable experience with young zinfandel--which is why, in a restaurant, I'd be more likely to order a zinfandel than a cabernet."