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Balsamic Vinegar, A Modena Affair
Balsamic vinegar from Modena is the product of a serious commitment to the must of the Trebbiano and Lambrusco grape varieties. The benefits of balsamic vinegar from Modena go beyond its flavor, as it contains antioxidants and aids in digestion. Balsamic vinegar is often used as a condiment for vegetables, a topping for fruit (strawberries), walnuts, and Parmigiano reggiano cheese, risottos and meat.
During production, cooking it causes alcohol and water to evaporate, while sugars caramelize. It is then stored in small 15-80 liter barrels where fermentation occurs. The process is governed by a special consortium exclusively in the province of Modena, famous for its rich wine and food tradition.
Making it goes all the way back to ancient Roman times, and is documented in the Latin poet Virgil’s Georgics. The specialty was also common on the tables of powerful Modenese noble families, spreading to the courts of Europe in the 1500s. The term balsamic was coined in 1747, and Casanova’s appreciation for it led to its fame as an aphrodisiac.
Dark in color, dense in texture and penetrating in aroma, this vinegar has a taste that enlightens the senses. It is matured for varying lengths of time. Aged for at least 25 years, it takes the privileged name of Extravecchio.