- New Alliance of Women in Washington Wine already stands at 200 strong
- Bullocks bid goodbye to Eye of the Needle Winery in Woodinville
- VineLines Dispatch #7: That’s a wrap
- Former Oregon car dealer gears up with Jachter Family Wines
- VineLines Dispatch: 6 Vineyards at Work
- L’Ecole Nº 41 to create wine bar at Marcus Whitman Hotel
- VineLines Dispatch: Harvest surrounding Lake Chelan
- Northwest restaurateurs purchase Basel Cellars in Walla Walla
- Hayden Homes CEO buys interest in Pepper Bridge, Amavi wineries
- Walla Walla Community College to receive $15 million gift from MacKenzie Scott
Zinfandel, Primitivo two sides of same coin
One of the great mysteries of the wine world through the years has been the relationship between Primitivo and Zinfandel.
According to some, they are the same grape. But if you go out into a vineyard with a grape grower or into a cellar with a winemaker, they will swear the two are different varieties.
All of this leads to confusion. For example, an Italian Primitivo can be labeled as Zinfandel and marketed as such in the United States. Yet for U.S. wineries, Zinfandel and Primitivo are considered different varieties.
It would appear that Zin and Primitivo are related to Crljenak Kaštelanski, a Croatian grape found on the Dalmatian Coast.
Carole Meredith, a researcher at the University of California-Davis, has done a lot of the modern DNA research on the grapes, though Wade Wolfe of Thurston Wolfe Winery in Prosser, Wash., worked on the genetic testing of Primitivo and Zinfandel when he was a Ph.D student in 1975.
Regardless of their origins, Primitivo and Zinfandel are becoming slightly more popular in the Pacific Northwest, with grape growers and winemakers working with the varieties in Washington, Oregon, British Columbia and Idaho.
Here are a few examples we’ve tasted recently. Ask for them at your favorite wine merchant or contact the wineries directly.