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Balsamic vinegar

Balsamic vinegar dressing: the origins and today

The origins of balsamic vinegar are based on traditions already widespread in the Mediterranean area around the year 1000 b.C.. The vinegar was obtained from the baked must. But just in the early Middle Ages the Celts in the Southern Alps introduced the wood barrels instead of the traditional amphorae. With a bunch of aromatic and precious woods, and a long-period controlled fermentation, this vinegar came closer to the tastes we can find today. In the meantime the nobles and the courtiers, seeking increasingly refined tastes, started around 1500 to produce very elaborate vinegars made to amaze their guests. In the area of Modena and Reggio Emilia, it became so precious that important noble families built the “acetaie” (special cellars) to manage a long ageing and own their reserved production of Modena vinegar. Even today the authentic balsamic vinegar, must be creamy, having the taste of Lambrusco wine or Trebbiano (grapes from which it derives), it needs to be aged many years (at least 12) in fine wood barrels (such as juniper and mulberry) to offer a unique taste. Today it is a precious vinegar, that makes many dishes exclusive and refined. If you are coming to visit Italy, try at least one dish dressed with POD Traditional Balsamic Vinegar.

Choose below your balsamic vinegar

Drops of Balsamic vinegar on fish, meats and vegetables

With fish dishes, are delicate food that is well suited with a few drops of balsamic vinegar, which must be poured raw at the end of cooking. Three or four drops of Traditional Balsamic Vinegar aged 12 years when the fish is warm and ready to be served ensure a good persistence of the aroma and give harmony to the dish. Meats get a special touch thanks to the Traditional Balsamic Vinegar from Reggio Emilia and Modena: the most suitable are game and red meat (roasts, braised meat), although white meat with raw vegetables can reveal unexpected flavors. On warm meat the vinegar must be poured raw in small quantities (a few drops) the end of cooking. Meat and Traditional Balsamic Vinegar must combine harmoniously in the palate. The Traditional Modena Balsamic Vinegar is also an excellent ingredient for marinating meat, with spices and wine. Finally it is used in small quantities on grilled meats, such as pork. For raw or grilled vegetables, preferred by vegetarians and vegans, Traditional Balsamic Vinegar is excellent both as a unique condiment and in “pinzimonio” (combined with oil and salt) with fennel, celery, turnip and other vegetables. A few drops of balsamic vinegar are enough to season any vegetable.

Cheese and fruit meet balsamic vinegar

Cheeses may seem have tastes very far from balsamic vinegar, but it is not. Parmigiano Reggiano POD cheese (original parmesan), for example, pairs very well, especially with cheese aged from 48 to 60 months. Also other aged cheeses can give excellent pairings with balsamic vinegar such as mature sheep and goat cheeses that offer a contrast full of flavors. In any Italian region you will find a cheese to combine with this precious vinegar. Fresh fruit, such as strawberries, go well with Traditional Balsamic Vinegar. Try to find your ideal combination. Even with ice cream, especially with creams such as chocolate or hazelnut , balsamic vinegar can give excellent results, just pour a few drops on the edge of the cup.

At the restaurant

In Italy ask only for these three types of vinegar: Traditional Balsamic Vinegar from Modena POD (DOP in Italian), Traditional Balsamic Vinegar from Reggio Emilia POD, Balsamic Vinegar PGI (IGP in Italian). The true balsamic vinegar is almost a cream and behind other names can be hidden low quality fake condiments. Both Modena and Reggio Emilia (Orange, Silver and Gold label) are excellent products, going well with all the foods we have described.

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