Zin-ful toast to 4th of July

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You want that wine. But your store or area distributor may not carry it. State law may prohibit you from ordering a wine online. What to do? Ask your wine retailer for a wine similar in flavor, style and price. Remember, too, prices vary.

— B. D.

By the numbers

62-67 Degrees considered optimal serving temperature for zinfandel

5,401 Acres of zinfandel vines in Sonoma County

1852 Year zinfandel grapes imported into California

Sources: Sonoma County Winegrape Commission; "The New Wine Lover's Companion"

The roots of zinfandel

Like many an immigrant to the United States, the zinfandel grape has hard-to-find roots.

Zinfandel is a cousin of primitivo, a grape grown in Puglia, which is the "heel" of the Italian boot, according to "The New Wine Lover's Companion." DNA testing in 2001 confirmed both grape varieties descend from a little-known Croatian grape called Crljenak Kastelanski.

California is the major production center for zinfandel, which was first planted there in the 1850s.
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