Aceto balsamico di Modena

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Modena enjoys the privilege of being the only area in Italy where traditional balsamic vinegar is produced. “Aceto Balsamico Traditizonale di Modena” has to pass through the stringent tests and criteria which are required by the Consorzio di Modena, a special consortium which was formed to protect the secrets of traditional balsamic vinegar. An exclusive chosen consortium consisting of only 200 producers concoct the syrupy fragrant vinegar and sell the remaining product of this fine vinegar as a “condimento”.

A must have for todays cooking and eating,that is what we use for some of our dishes in our cooking classes

Travel through the ancient Roman era to find the secrets of Balsamic Vinegar. Head towards Modena in Italy, through rich vineyards to find traditional splendid accompaniment for gourmet tastes . Balsamic means “like balsam”, balsam being an aromatic resin. Flavour gourmet appetites with this unique accompaniment and enjoy the infinite joys of a gastronomic exploration.

A Divine Extraction

The extraordinary and traditional balsamic vinegar is made from the ‘must’, (unfermented juice) of the Trebbiano grape. Derived only from the Trebbiano grape originally, other grapes such as the Lambrusco, Ancellotta, Sauvignon and Sgavetta are also used. The ‘musts’ are the virgin extracts which are boiled down in open pots over a direct flame. The extract (concentrated juice) from the boiled down juice becomes a fruity syrup. A stringy, sticky substance that forms on the surface of the vinegar containing yeast and bacteria (mycoderma aceti) is added. This concoction is then aged in wooden barrels and transferred to barrels of different kinds of wood over a gradual period of time.

Each producer of balsamic vinegar has their own secret recipes in ageing the vinegar in wooden barrels. A myriad spectrum of wood like chestnut, ash tree, cherry, mulberry, juniper and oak are used to flavour and age the balsamic vinegar. The finished product should have aged for a minimum of 12 years or more. The final product is then presented to the DOC, a body of officials who have specialized in the quality of the balsamic vinegar.

Flavouring a Rich Tradition

Let your tastebuds explore hidden flavours of recipes from the simple and homely to the most elaborate, to which the balsamic vinegar is added to bring out aromas and tastes of different courses. Balsamic vinegar is served as an unusual aperitif or used in the traditional manner on flakes of Parmigiano Reggiano cheese, or on a risotto or the well known ‘scaloppine’. It can be tossed on a fresh salad or surprise even a gourmet palate with strawberries and icecream.

Balsamic Vinegar glows with a dark brown richness in a fluid but syrup-like consistency. Being sweet and sour in perfect proportions, this special luxurious accompaniment offers a full rich flavour shaded with nuances of expressions in a divine aroma filled with secret lights. Enriching tradition, palates and flavours, this special vinegar is versatile and balances a sustained equilibrium between the quantity used and the result wished to obtain in fragrance and flavour.

Enjoy a divine feast with food fit for the gods….