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Contributing Article by Sebastian Pistritto
True Balsamic Vinegar of Modena comes from the northern part of Italy, near the gulf of Genoa. It is made from unfermented juice from white grapes known as “must” which has high sugar content and is typically found in trebbiano grapes. When the juice begins to ferment, it is cooked in a copper kettle until about one-third of it has evaporated. Bacteria culture is usually obtained by adding vinegar which contains active bacteria. Finally, the balsamic vinegar is placed in wooden barrels to age. Here, it will evaporate by about 10% per year. Thus, 12 years later a 100-liter container has been reduced to 15 liters. True balsamic is very dark in color, has a sweet, fruity flavor and a syrupy-type consistency. Surprisingly, true balsamic vinegar is usually not found in supermarkets. There, one will generally find commercial grade balsamic vinegar that is made up of red wine vinegar mixed with must and caramel. I would probably estimate that over 75% of commercial grade balsamic vinegar is pure red wine vinegar with no must. You will notice that the commercial grade is much lighter in color and has a strong acidity taste and smell to it.
How to use the Balsamic Vinegar:
How to select True Balsamic Vinegar:
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