What About Vinegar?
We’ve discussed our rich and smooth olive oils, but what about our flavorful vinegars? There’s a lot to love about our large selection of flavored and infused and vinegars. Chances are we have a variety for you to fall in love with.
How is it Made?
Making vinegar involves a 2-part process. It starts with a liquid containing natural sugar, such as grape juice, apple cider, or coconut sap . The addition of yeast changes the sugars to alcohol. This is called alcoholic fermentation. Next, a bacteria called Acetobacter is added to the liquid. It changes the alcohol to acetic acid. The product is now considered vinegar.
What’s So Special About Balsamic Vinegar?
Balsamic vinegar originated in Modena, Italy and was first mentioned in the Royal Archives of Emperor Henry II in 1046. Because of their high sugar content, only Lambrusco or Trebbiano grapes are used to make balsamic vinegar.
Using ancient, traditional methods, carefully selected Lambrusco or Trebbiano grapes are pressed to produce “must”. Next, the must is simmered in copper cauldrons until it is reduced to 40 to 70%. The concentrated must is transferred to casks made of chestnut, cherry, ash, oak, mulberry, and juniper. The must is left to age for at least 12 years. As it ages, some of the liquid evaporates and some is absorbed into the cask. At intervals of 12, 18, or 25 years, the reduced liquid is moved into a smaller barrel and the new must is used to top off another barrel.
Traditional Balsamic Vinegar
Traditionally produced balsamic vinegar is regulated by the European Union Protected Designation of Origin (PDO) certification and Italy’s Denominazione di Origine Controllata (DOC). To obtain DOC and PDO certification, balsamic vinegar must be produced in Modena or Reggio Emilla from Trebbiano or Lambrusco grapes grown in Modena or Reggio Emillia. It must be aged a minimum of 12 years and approved by the two consortia. Only a small amount is produced each year and is bottled in unique 100 ml bottles. It costs between $75 and $120 per bottle.
Balsamic Vinegar of Modena
This type of balsamic vinegar certified by the European Union Protected Geographical Indication (PGI). Balsamic Vinegar of Modena is made by mixing concentrated or cooked grape must and wine vinegar (wine vinegar is NOT used in traditional balsamic vinegar). This blend is then aged in wooden casks. PGI certifies balsamic vinegars of Modena at a minimum of 2 months or at 3 years. Only grapes from Lambrusco, Sangiovese, Trebbiano, Albana, Ancellotta, Fortana and Montuni vines can be used. Also, a minimum amount of 10% wine vinegar, aged at least 10 years, can be used. All vinegars with the PGI logo must be approved by third party auditors of the PGI.
Balsamic Vinegars at EvilO
We offer a 25 Star Balsamic vinegar from Modena, Italy. It is made especially for our supplier by one of the best artisan producers in Modena. This producer began making balsamic vinegar in 1889. It is considered a Balsamic Vinegar of Modena, although it does not have PGI certification (due to being marketed by a US wholesaler from a US facility to multiple stores). It does not include any thickeners, sweeteners, or low-grade vinegar. Our 25 Star Balsamic vinegar is used in many of our flavored vinegars.
Dark Balsamic vs. White Balsamic
At EvilO, we offer a selection of both white and dark balsamic vinegars. Both are made from the same grapes, but white balsamic is simmered carefully at a lower temperature to prevent caramelization and is often aged for less time. White balsamic features a lighter and cleaner taste. Dark balsamic tastes sweeter and richer.
Peruse the following lists and check out all the delicious flavors we offer at EvilO. Make your own list and come down and try a few (or try them all!).
Dark Balsamic Vinegars
Pecan Praline: A rich and sinful delight in our 25 Star Balsamic Vinegar. Drizzle over ice cream or baked apples. Pairs well with our butter infused EVOO or coconut or chocolate balsamic vinegar.
Vanilla: Another delicious flavor to drizzle over ice cream. Use to flavor glazes and icings or pour a little in your morning oatmeal. Pairs well with blood orange, butter, chipotle, Meyer lemon, or Persian lime EVOO.
Bordeaux Cherry: sweet and tart! Reminiscent of brandied cherries. A great choice on salads featuring feta, goat, or blue cheese. Also a great addition to sauces and glazes. Pair with Persian lime EVOO for a cherry limeade flavor.
Espresso: Perfect for every coffee lover, this balsamic vinegar makes a great marinade or rub for steaks. It’s also delicious added to brownies or chocolate cake. Drizzle over ice cream. Pairs well with blood orange or chipotle EVOO.
Fig: Imparts a nutty and semi-sweet flavor. Perfect on salads or as a bread dipper. Pairs well with blood orange, chipotle, garlic, Meyer lemon, or Tuscan herb EVOO.
Garlic: Makes the most delicious marinade. Pair with Smoked Hickory EVOO for grilled or roasted meat and vegetables. Also yummy on salads.
Garlic Cilantro: Tastes delicious in all your favorite Tex-Mex dishes. Drizzle over tacos, taco salads, guacamole, or salsa. Use as a marinade for fajita meat.
Hickory: Rich, sweet, and smokey. Makes an ideal marinade for grilled meats and as your secret ingredient in baked beans. Pairs well with garlic and Persian lime EVOO.
Lavender: A lovely delicate and floral vinegar. Drizzle over cheeses, salads, grilled meats, or veggies. Pairs well with rosemary, basil, or herbes de Provence EVOO.
25 Star: Dark, thick, and sweet. Drizzle over steaks, tomato and mozzarella salad, bruscetta, or any grilled veggies.
8 Star: Crisper and lighter than 25 Star. The perfect accompaniment for fresh fruits and veggies.
White Balsamic Vinegars
Blueberry: Sweet like blueberries. This vinegar is ideal for salads or drizzled over cheeses. Pairs well with Meyer lemon or butter infused EVOO.
Coconut: A tropical treat! Drizzle over fresh fruit, white fish, ice cream or sorbet. Use in salad dressings or marinades. Pairs well with Persian lime or Meyer lemon EVOO.
Jalapeno: Sweet and sassy! For those who like a little heat and a little sweet. Ideal for marinades. Pairs well with blood orange, chipotle, garlic, or Persian lime EVOO.
Lemongrass Mint: light and refreshing. You’ll love this white balsamic vinegar on shrimp, lamb, rice, salads, and marinades. Highlights any Asian dish. Pairs well with basil or garlic EVOO.
Orange: Like a sweet, juicy orange. A great vinegar for salad dressings, drizzled over ice cream, or as a glaze. Pair with butter infused EVOO.
Peach: Tastes like a ripe, juicy peach. Absolutely delicious in salad dressings and in marinades for poultry or pork. Pairs well with jalapeño or Persian lime EVOO.
Pear: A fruity delight. Add to salads or marinades. Pairs well with smoked hickory, basil, or chipotle EVOO.
Pineapple: This sweet, tropical vinegar is great in marinades, on salads, or drizzled over ice cream. Delicious when paired with chipotle, Persian lime, or jalapeño EVOO. Also pairs well with coconut balsamic vinegar.
Pumpkin Pie Spice: Evokes the flavors and scents of Fall. Add to tea, coffee, martinis, or milkshakes. Also a great addition to pancakes, oatmeal, or muffins. Pairs well with Picual or Cinnamon EVOO.
Honey Ginger: A flavorful choice for Asian or grilled dishes. Also good in salad dressings. Pairs well with Meyer lemon or garlic EVOO.
Raspberry Ginger: Refreshing and crisp, this vinegar is the perfect accompaniment for fresh fruit, pancakes, and salads. Pairs well with blood orange EVOO.
Strawberry: My favorite white balsamic vinegar. Super sweet with a bit of tartness. Tastes great on a spinach salad or paired with the jalapeño EVOO. I add a bit to water or iced tea for incredible flavor.
Serrano Chile Honey: Another sweet and spicy offering. Made with small batch honey from 5th generation beekeeper in the Pacific Northwest. You'll love this vinegar in salad dressings, sauces, and marinades. Pairs well with blood orange and Persian lime EVOO.
Lambrusco: This is a delicious red wine vinegar made from the long, natural maturation of Lambrusco wine. Aged in oak barrels for an unmistakable flavor. An EvilO favorite. Perfect with steak and in salad dressings.
- Tags: 25 Star Dark Balsamic Vinegar Bordeaux Cherry Dark Balsamic Vinegar Coconut White Balsamic Vinegar Espresso Dark Balsamic Vinegar Fig Dark Balsamic Vinegar Garlic Cilantro Dark Balsamic Vinegar Garlic Dark Balsamic Vinegar Hickory Dark Balsamic Vinegar Honey Ginger White Balsamic Vinegar Italian Lambrusco Red Wine Vinegar jalapeño white balsamic vinegar Lavender Dark Balsamic Vinegar Peach White Balsamic Vinegar Pear White Balsamic Vinegar Pecan Praline Dark Balsamic Vinegar Pineapple White Balsamic Vinegar Pumpkin Pie Spice Balsamic Vinegar Raspberry Ginger White Balsamic Vinegar Serrano Chile Honey Vinegar Strawberry White Balsamic Vinegar Vanilla Dark Balsamic Vinegar
- Lisa Emmert