Traditional Balsamic Vinegar

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- Traditional Balsamic Vinegar -
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vinegar of the world.

Balsamic Vinegar FAQ

Does balsamic ...?

Q: Is white vinegar the same as balsamic vinegar?

A: White balsamic vinegar is usually an industrial vinegar. The brown colour comes naturally from years of ageing in the barrel. To speed up the process, many companies use sugar colorant (E150d) to artificially color the transparent, white balsamic vinegar.


Q: What is balsamic vinegar made out of?

A: The traditional balsamic vinegar is made from grapes and has just one ingredient: cooked grape must. The "Aceto Balsamico di Modena" is made from grape must and wine vinegar. All other variations are called "condiments" or balsamic condiments and can produced out of apples (with apple cidar or apple vinegar), elder, peaches, strawberrys, rice, corn and other fruits and substances. All organic things that can be fermented are possible can be the basis for balsamic condiment production.


Q: Is balsamic vinegar good for your health?

A: Yes. The US National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health has published some more details about the medcial effects of balsamic vinegar.


Q: Can you make your own balsamic vinegar?

A: Yes, the simplest way is to mix grape must and wine vinegar together and mature that combination in a small wood barrel. Otherwise you can buy a "mother of vinegar" and make vinegar from red wine. After two weeks you can add grape juice and heat and reduce the mix about 50% add some sugar or honey, that's it.


Q: Can I use white vinegar instead of balsamic vinegar?

A: Sure, if it's about the acid, both vinegars have nearly the same acidity. When it comes to tasting aspects, there is a huge difference, so I would say no.


Q: What does "affinato" stands for?

A: Affinato is Italian and used to label a traditional balsamic vinegar from Modena PDO matured for at least 12 years. The traditional balsamic vinegar is matured and after a production process lasting at least 12 years, all the routine checks carried out by the Certification Body have been passed and the organoleptic test of the panel of master tasters registered in the Chamber of Commerce of Modena has been passed. It is the youngest TBV product. It can be accompanied by different colors of the seal capsule, generally metallic red but also cream or in some rare special cases in other colors.


Q:What is a good substitute for balsamic vinegar?

A: A condiment made out of other fruits. Like a apple cidar vinegar.


Q: Is there any alcohol in balsamic vinegar?

A: No, usually not. The alcohol value would have to be declared on the bottle if it contained alcohol.


Q: Is there a lot of sugar in balsamic vinegar?

A: In industrial produced balsamic vinegars you will find a lot of sugar added to he products. Sometimes it's called not sugar. They call it sucrose, dextrose, glucose, fructose syrup, starch syrup, caramel syrup, lactose, maltose, malt extract, maltodextrin, dextrin or wheat dextrin, sweet whey powder or barley malt extract. Real traditional balsamic vinegar has no additional sugar added, just the natural fructose from the grapes.


Q: Is balsamic vinegar good for weight loss?

A: No, because the natural fructose leads to many calories.


Q: What does "extra vecchio" stand for?

A: Extra vecchio or extravecchio is Italian and stands for a traditional balsamic vinegar matured for at least 25 years. The the seal capsule of the bottle is always gold colored. The term is protected by the producer constorium. TBV products that aged much longer than 25 years also shipped with a gold capsule and will also labeled with "extra vecchio". 


Q: Can you cook with balsamic vinegar?

A: Yes, the good taste of balsamic vingar is lost during the process. Better to use balsamic vinegar for salad dressing, topping or decoration.


Q: Is there a difference between balsamic vinegar and balsamic vinaigrette?

A: Sure, a balsamic vinaigrette is a condiment of different ingredients. The balsamic vinegar, especially the traditional balsamic vinegar is just a pure matured cooked grape juice.


Q: What is the taste of balsamic vinegar?

A: Sweet and sour. If the vinegar tastes too sour, it wasn't a good one. If it is too sweet, then you have either got a really good very old vinegar or sugar or sugar substances have been added to the vinegar.


Q: What can I do with balsamic vinegar?

A: You can use it to flavour your favorit food or salad. Traditional balsamic vinegar is even eaten with ice cream, bisquites or choclate cakes. Professionals enjoy it only pure - drop by drop.


Q: Is all balsamic vinegar vegan?

A: When is comes to real balsamic vinegar, yes.


Q:  A lobster red colored label on a bottle of traditional balsamic vinegar of Reggio Emilia stand for?

A: The vinegar product has reached at least 240 points out of a max of 400 points from the expert tasters who are responsible concerning the quality standards of this real balsamic vinegar. Also the vinegar matured at least 12 years in typical wood casks.


Q: Is balsamic halal?

A: Balsamic vinegars are classified as halal (حلال). There are discussion on the community, that balsamic vinegar that is made with wine vinegar is not halal. Try to find balsamic vinegar that is made without wine vinegar, like the real traditional balsamic vinegar that is made just from grape must.


Q: Does balsamic vinegar aged in the bottle?

A: No, the aging process stops in a bottle.


Q: How long is balsamic vinegar good for?

A: If there are no other ingredients than "cooked grape must" like in the original traditional balsamic vinegar, then the balsamic vinegar at least good for 10 years. Traditional balsamic vinegar was formerly used as a preservative and is one of the few foods that does not require a minimum date of stay. Only if the balsamic vinegar contains more than one ingredient then that balsamic vingar may go bad within the first three years. It depends on the sugars and thickener and colouring and of course on the right storage.


Q: Is Balsamic Vinegar high in acid?

A: No, between 3% and 7% acidity is normal. Old balsamic vinegar (25 years+) has less acid than younger. The rules in Italy say that there have to be a acidity of minium 6% for Aceto Balsamico di Modena.