Food - Drink
Zinfandel Wine Didn't Originate In The US
Zinfandel wine is so popular in the United States that many drinkers think the Zinfandel grape originated in the country. California is famously full of Zinfandel vines, and thus many bottles of wine are also made in the state, but the grape itself can actually be traced back to an unexpected country.
It took some time to trace the origins of the Zinfandel grape, but the mystery was solved in 2001 when UC Davis plant geneticist Carole Meredith stumbled upon an ancient grape variety called Crljenak Kaštelanski in Croatia. This grape was genetically the same as the Californian Zinfandel and the Italian Primitivo.
The path to this discovery perplexed viticulturists for decades, perhaps due to the many phases the grape has gone through. The Italian grape called Primitivo was brought to California in the 1960s by a viticulturist from UC Davis, creating the grape that would be renamed Zinfandel and its strong association with America.