Free ZAP tix !

2 sets of 2 tickets (tix worth $35 apiece) free to the first 2 commentors to answer the following Zin-related question:

Wine Quiz

Name the oft-ridiculed pioneer who, legend would have it, brought Zinfandel to California from eastern Europe. He didn’t do it, but the part of the legend about where he got the grapes tracks very closely with the truth. Hint: He reputedly died while trying to cross a crocodile-infested stream on a narrow tree limb.

  • Earle Jones

    No mention of California Zinfandel should be made without noting the four individuals who founded Ridge Vineyards: Charlie Rosen, Howie Zeidler, Hew Crane, and David Bennion. All four are gone now but the Zin lives on under the fine tutelage of winemaker Paul Draper. The founding four were engineers at Stanford Research Institute. I had the pleasure to work with all four. I believe it was Ridge that converted Zin from the blending grape of 50 years ago into the varietal that we enjoy today.

    • Bruce Cass

      Earle – You’re definitely right. They did a marvelous thing, and I trust they enjoyed every minute of it.

  • Leo Eskin

    Agoston Haraszthy is the name of the pioneer that you are looking for. I believe that Agoston’s son, Arpad, credited his father with bringing the first Zinfandel to California in the early 1850’s. However, it is my understanding that the New York horticulturalist George Gibbs probably brought Zinfandel to the United States around 1820 from the Imperial Nursery in Vienna, Austria.