Our appointment with the authentic balsamic vinegar continues with Balsamic Vinegar of Modena IGP.
Balsamic Vinegar of Modena begun very popular in 70’s, when the first balsamic vinegar products arrived in the US. This surge in popularity led to a rise in derivative products, which in turn led to the introduction of a protected designation for true balsamic vinegar. Actually, D.O.P. label is reserved only for the very best, so that’s where I.G.P designation comes in.
Balsamic Vinegar of Modena I.G.P must contain wine vinegar (up to 50%) to maintain its acidity (at last 6%). It may contain also thickening agents, caramel or colorants: the balance of ingredients is the reason because you can pay a balsamic vinegar of Modena from 5 to 50 dollars.
How recognize an authentic Balsamic Vinegar of Modena IGP
Color and Texture: the appearance is variable because additives are permitted and the ratio of wine vinegar is variable. If the label don’t list any thickeners, it may contain a high percentage of grape must.
Flavor: I.G.P. balsamic has a high acidity which is reflected in the taste. It is closer to a standard vinegar with a touch of sweetness.
Identification: EU banned the use of potentially misleading language on I.G.P. label. The word “aged” can appear on the label if the vinegar has matured in wood barrels.
Usage: Balsamic Vinegar of Modena is perfect as salad condiment, but it’s also a great flavor for soups and stews or as a marinade. You can also boil it in a saucepan with some sugar to create a cheap balsamic syrup. The darkest variety is also good on ice cream or berries.
Storage: this variety of balsamic vinegar keeps indefinitely.