The Red Zinfandel wine derives its name from the very grapes from which it is made, Zinfandel. This type of grape used for making wine is dark red in color which ends up producing a bold red wine. The Red Zinfandel vines thrive in moderate climates which are not too high or too cold. This is because if these grapes are exposed to very hot weather, they are likely to wither. Red Zinfandel grapes also have a thin skin and grow in big and firm bunches making them susceptible to bunch rot. These fruits take a short time to ripen and produce juice which has high sugar content. Those grapes meant for making red wine are harvested later after those meant for white wine, in order to improve the flavor and color.
Red Zinfandel History
Zinfandel grapes were introduced in America from Europe in the first quarter of the 19th century. It became a sudden success in Napa and Sonoma areas. This popularity did not wane with time but it has gained a major following in the United States. This has made the Red Zinfandel wine one of the most desired red wines in the US .This popularity can be attributed to the high class of wine made and it’s similarity to other American types of wine.
Red Zinfandel vines are grown in many regions but they do better along the coastal areas. Two places in American that are known for growing these vines are Sonoma and South central coast especially Paso Robles. These grapes are only grown in 10% of the vineyards in the United States. Other places which are associated with growing these grapes include South Africa and Australia
Red Zinfandel Qualities
The quality and taste of this wine is determined by the condition of the grapes at the time of making the wine. The degree of ripeness will produce different flavors in the wines with different characteristics. The taste is also determined by the environment and soils where the Red Zinfandel grapes are grown. Those vines that are grown in areas with low temperatures produce red wine with a raspberry flavor while those vines which are grown in warm areas are likely to produce red wine with blackberry flavor. In fact, Zinfandel is among the few types of wine whose flavor can be determined by even the dexterity of the winemaker.
These Red Zinfandel grapes are also different from other types of grapes in that they grow and ripen irregularly. This occurs where a whole bunch of grapes could have as little as a third of them ripe. Harvesting such grapes is therefore cumbersome since the winemaker can only handpick the ripe ones and leave the rest to ripen. This cost of handpicking drives the price of the finished product up. During the wine making process, another factor that determines the taste of the wine is the amount of time that the grapes take to ferment.
Red Zinfandel Pairing
There are many different types of food that are recommended for serving with Red Zinfandel. In a country like America, this wine is mainly served with Chilean stewed lentils which also contain bacon. Asians use the wine in a curry that is made from beetroot. Australians prefer serving this wine when they are serving lamb which is roasted and has rosemary seasoning added to it. The Europeans love Red Zinfandel with Balkan beef kebab.