Crafted to exacting standards, using centuries-old techniques, find out why Traditional Balsamic Vinegar of Modena DOP is considered liquid gold.
Aceto Balsamico Tradizionale di Modena PDO, the mahogany-hued sweet-tart syrup that’s packaged in a distinctive wax-sealed, bulb-shaped bottle, is so revered in Italy that it is often gifted to couples on their wedding day. This is not the standard balsamic vinegar used in your salad dressing – all production phases must occur only in Modena, Italy, using highly regulated centuries-old techniques.
Whereas other vinegars are brewed from wine, Aceto Balsamico Tradizionale di Modena PDO is carefully coaxed from the pure must of whole-pressed Trebbiano or Lambrusco grapes, which is first cooked over an open flame until concentrated by approximately one third. It is then left to ferment and further mature for a minimum of 12 years (sometimes up to 100!) in batteria – successively smaller aging barrels – made from various woods, such as, ash, chestnut, juniper, oak, mulberry, or cherry, which impart flavour to the vinegar. Traditional Balsamic Vinegar of Modena DOP is best savoured in subtle dishes, where it can take center stage – drizzled over the freshest, sweetest strawberries of summer or as a finishing flourish over a dish of delicious risotto.
There is also Aceto Balsamico di Modena PGI, which is produced during a single-barrel cooking process that has a much shorter maturation period. It can contain up to 50% wine vinegar and a variety of other ingredients, making it a more economical option that is suitable for every day use. It is ideal as a salad dressing, or for garnishing the classic combination of basil, tomato and bocconcini with a healthy splash of olive oil and a sprinkle of sea salt.