Balsamic vinegar has been exposed through the media lately as having a deceiving nature. Through this exposure we have discovered that there are many condiments that call themselves balsamic vinegar. The word Balsamic comes from the word balsam, which means restorative or curative. The process in which it is made is not the same as the process of making vinegar. Claiming there is only one kind of balsamic vinegar could be like saying there is only one kind of woman. As discerning consumers, it is up to us to check the credentials and background of the balsamic vinegar we choose to enjoy.
The original and true balsamic is made from white Trebbiana grapes pressed before they are fermented. This is called Traditional Balsamic Vinegar of Modena. The “must” produced from the pressed grapes is cooked and then stored in casks for many years. This long, slow, and expensive process produces a superb culinary condiment that has many useful qualities as well as delighting the palate. This balsamic vinegar has an intensity and smoothness that are revealed when combined with different foods, such as steak, eggs, and seafood. Like an exquisite mysterious woman, a touch of this balsamic vinegar reveals the hidden flavors of any meal. Drizzled over berries and fruit or ice cream, it creates a delectable taste experience. Look for the distinct bulb shaped bottle of 100ml in specialty shops if you want to delight your senses and improve your constitution.
The commercial grade balsamic vinegar takes two months to three years to mature and is more affordable. These vinegars are of a high quality and are more readily available. There are many different varieties and have excellent flavors. They have an indefinite shelf life, however, once you have tasted these condiments you will begin to experiment and discover their versatility. They are healthy, nutritional and playful. These balsamic vinegars add zest and freshness to food and promote healthier eating by enhancing and complimenting the flavors of meat, fish, vegetables and salads. These include white and dark balsamic vinegars in a variety of flavors.
There are also false balsamic vinegars which range from the delicious to the toxic. The trend has been to flavor vinegar with caramel and flavorings. We buy these and enjoy them for their pseudo flavor artificial, unhealthy and fleeting as it may be. They may tickle the taste buds, however the only value would be to encourage people to eat more salads. The discerning consumer would not consider this product. One who has tasted the richness of the true balsamic will instantly know the difference. Balsamic vinegar has a delectable, heavenly flavor. Used sparingly as it works well on any cuisine. It is your choice, don’t be fooled by clever packaging and snappy advertising. Ultimately it is your discerning palate, responsive taste buds and the soft contented glow that surrounds you after a meal that is the true test of an exceptional Balsamic Vinegar.