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House of Balsamic

Posted Dec 06 2011 2:33pm

After meeting Claire from House of Balsamic at Foodbuzz this year, I have been super intrigued with the different varieties of balsamic vinegar there are out there. Some are aged up to 25 years and beyond. Here is some interesting information from House of Balsamic.

Only an exclusive consortium, made up of one hundred select families, is certified to produce authentic balsamic vinegar, or Aceto Balsamico Tradizionale di Modena. Passed down from one generation to the next, the enchanted process entails precise execution, ensuring that the entire manufacturing process- from the vines to the bottle- stays pure.

To ensure nothing less then perfection, when a balsamic vinegar is deemed ready for market, it must first pass the test of an anonymous panel of five expert tasters. If it presents the slightest flaw in appearance, taste or smell, it cannot be bottled.

If the balsamic vinegar meets all of the criteria, the seal of the Consorzio is placed on the bottle with the Italian government designation of D.O.C. (Denominazione di Origine Controllata). Each bottle is then numbered and registered.

The process from the vine to the bottle is elaborate and guarded as a family heirloom. Each brand tastes uniquely different as every family uses a secret combination of wooden casks to age their product. With only about 3,000 gallons of balsamic vinegar produced each year, a bottle of Malpighi balsamic vinegar is considered a unique and sophisticated gift.   

To guarantee a superior product, the manufacturing process is heavily regulated by the Italian government and must take place exclusively in the elected lands of Modena using the specified process.

According to the law, the grapes must be of the Trebbiano and Lambrusco variety and harvested entirely from the vineyards of the designated region. To be eligible for sale, the balsamic vinegar must be aged in at least five specific types of wood for a minimum of twelve years.

The guidelines for packaging are also strictly enforced. The traditional bottle is trademarked and can be used only by members of the consortium. Even the shape of the bottle, the cap cover, and the lettering must be to specification.

Every step that is taken to produce a bottle of Malpighi balsamic vinegar guarantees a superior product down to the last drop.

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You can imagine why I was excited to be sampling some of their fabulous products. While not aged 12 years, the Saproroso is an amazing vinegar. Sweet and tangy with lots of body. Not watery like most store balsamic.

I drizzled it on fresh vegetables to roast at 450 for about 25 minutes.

asparagus, cauliflower, sweet peppers and another tray of butternut squash.

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The results were just as good as I had hoped.

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I am excited to use this as salad dressing or on fish this week!

What is your favorite recipe using balsamic?

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