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Blog: Aceto Balsamico di Modena | 1/3



In the 12th century, the Duke of Canossa had a guest served a dish made with balsamic vinegar. The guest was impressed: 'This is not vinegar, this is a beneficial medicine'. Balsamic, indeed. At the time, it was common to dress up the pleasure of indulgence with health reasons. After all, there are said to be people who take a teaspoon of pure 'balsamic' after a meal: because of better digestion. Older people know what it's all about: the decline of stomach acid in old age. The miracle medicine is relatively thick, dark and sour-sweet or sweet-sour depending on the place of origin, manufacturer and age. It is much milder than sherry vinegar, but fuller and more intense in flavor. Anyone who tastes a spoonful of it initially thinks involuntarily of wine, not vinegar.

But watch out: Not everything that calls itself 'aceto-balsamic' has anything to do with the original, the 'traditional balsamic from Modena'. Cunning businessmen have long taken advantage of consumers' ignorance and the unprotected name 'Aceto-Balsamico'. Because under this name, borrowed from the traditional specialty of the Modena region, cheap products are marketed today, which achieve neither a natural concentration process nor the high quality of the traditional product. The reason for this is that in the industrial production of 'Aceto Balsamico' a maturation and concentration process may be simulated with optical tricks such as sugar couleur.

THE PRODUCTION
'The secret of a good balsamic vinegar is heat, cold and calm,' says Professor Renato Bergonzini, vice president of the Consortium for the Protection of Balsamic Vinegar. Of course, he hit the bull's eye with this banal formula. In truth, the production of the genuine, traditional aceto balsamico is such a mysterious and time-consuming art, the results of which are subject to such strict control, that the outsider wonders where the seriousness of the economist ends and the fun of the gambler begins.

The true balsamic vinegar is made from the white, sweet grapes of the 'Trebbiano di Spagna' variety. The best vinegar makers also do not buy grapes, because chemical substances cause problems. The best balsamic producers grow their own grapes, in an organic way. After pressing, the must is immediately boiled down to a solution with 30% sugar content at a minimum of 80 degrees and in at least 12 hours to avoid the slightest alcoholic fermentation. After that it has lost 30 to 50% of its quantity. The resulting amber-colored Seim is bottled in large glass balloons and immediately hermetically sealed. In this way, it remains germ-free until further processing the following year - six months later. The cooked must is filtered and transferred to oak barrels, where it ferments for three years.

If the barrel is new, it is 'inoculated' with balsamic vinegar from a previous production to get the fermentation going. Barrels in use are only ever emptied enough to allow the residue to start the process. The bacteria convert the sugar into vinegar, not alcohol as in wine. After six months, the 'vinegar mother' has formed on the surface of the must, a fine skin that indicates that the acid bacteria are successfully at work. - Gerardo


Aceto Balsamico di Modena

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Shop: Aceto Balsamico di Modena
Aceto-Balsamico di Modena ROSSO, Acetaia Giuseppe Cattani, Emilia-Romagna

Aceto-Balsamico di Modena ROSSO (Bio), Acetaia Giuseppe Cattani


Acetaia Giuseppe Cattani, Emilia-Romagna
€ 7,50
15,00 €/L
´Bollo Argento´ · Aceto-Balsamico di Modena Tradizionale, Acetaia Medici Ermete, Emilia-Romagna

Bollo Argento · Aceto-Balsamico di Modena Tradizionale, Acetaia Medici Ermete


Acetaia Medici Ermete, Emilia-Romagna
€ 110,00
1100,00 €/L
´Invecchiato Acetaia´ · Aceto-Balsamico di Modena IGP, Acetaia Giuseppe Cattani, Emilia-Romagna

Invecchiato Acetaia · Aceto-Balsamico di Modena IGP (Bio), Acetaia Giuseppe Cattani


Acetaia Giuseppe Cattani, Emilia-Romagna
€ 12,00
48,00 €/L
´Bollo Oro´ · Aceto-Balsamico di Modena Tradizionale, Acetaia Medici Ermete, Emilia-Romagna

Bollo Oro · Aceto-Balsamico di Modena Tradizionale, Acetaia Medici Ermete


Acetaia Medici Ermete, Emilia-Romagna
€ 160,00
1600,00 €/L
´Vecchia AEmilia´ · Aceto-Balsamico di Modena, Acetaia Medici Ermete, Emilia-Romagna

Vecchia AEmilia · Aceto-Balsamico di Modena, Acetaia Medici Ermete


Acetaia Medici Ermete, Emilia-Romagna
€ 6,95
27,80 €/L
Aceto-Balsamico BIANCO, Acetaia Giuseppe Cattani, Emilia-Romagna

Aceto-Balsamico BIANCO (Bio), Acetaia Giuseppe Cattani


Acetaia Giuseppe Cattani, Emilia-Romagna
€ 7,50
15,00 €/L