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ALL ABOUT VINEGAR

We think we know it so well, this best ally of Italian cuisine, but balsamic vinegar hides many secrets!


WHERE DOES BALSAMIC VINEGAR COME FROM?



Originally from Modena, in Emilia-Romagna, its particular acidity and deep aromas have always been highly appreciated.


In the Middle Ages, vinegars were already widespread in Europe, but it was in Italy that the production of balsamic vinegar began to develop in a distinct way. Initially, it was made by reducing grape must, a freshly squeezed grape juice containing the skins, seeds and stems. This slow process of fermentation and aging in barrels of different woods resulted in a sweet, dark and syrupy vinegar.


The balsamic vinegar quickly gained fame and was enjoyed as a delicacy. Over the centuries, its production has been regulated to preserve its quality and authenticity. Today, the traditional balsamic vinegar of Modena is produced according to strict standards. It is aged for several years in barrels of different woods, such as oak, mulberry, ash or cherry, in order to develop its characteristic aroma.


The balsamic vinegar has become a prized ingredient in the kitchen, used to season salads, marinate meats, enhance pasta dishes and even for desserts. Its ancient history and traditional production method make it a culinary treasure appreciated throughout the world, bringing a touch of elegance and inimitable flavors to each dish.



PEDRO XIMENEZ SINGLE VINEGAR FROM DEHESA


Maison DEHESA is also interested in vinegar. Tired of syrupy balsamic vinegars laden with added sugars, the House is taking up the great tradition of great sherry wines, better known as "sherry wine" or "tio pepe".


To offer your vinegar the letters of nobility of these grands crus, it involved the greatest Spanish oenologists as well as a producer working according to the strict replica of the methods of aging of the grands crus of Sherry, on the desert lands of Cordoba. Their soil is loaded with siliceous sands, thus allowing a greater reflection of light. Combined with late harvests and drying of the bunches in the sun for 24 hours, - an old forgotten technique called passerillage - we manage to concentrate the natural sugar contained in this grape variety, without adding additional sugar.


The aging is then based on the strict replication of ancestral methods of vinification of Sherry wine, known as "Criada" and "Solera" (see just after), in a mixture of juices that are up to 50 years old. 'age. The vinegar is also matured in century-old oak barrels that were used to age Pedro Ximénez wines, which gives it a powerful woody nose and a very ample aromatic structure. Finally, the acidity level is reduced to less than 6% to recall the sweetness of balsamic vinegars. The vinegar is unfiltered, which allows it to continue to age in the bottle... An elixir of time, at the height of the great Sherry wines, which is revealed by a very wide aromatic spectrum: between roundness and balsamic acidity through the bitterness of cocoa, between notes of wood and red fruits, nuts and honey.




HOW IS VINEGAR MADE?


This is a traditional method of aging and blending< /u> used in the production of certain types of wine, notably sherry wines in Spain. It is a unique process that results in complex, high-quality wines. The term "solera" refers to a series of stacks of barrels or barrels superimposed, generally arranged on several levels. Each level represents a "criadera" or "ladder". The lower level, also called "solera", contains the oldest wine, while the upper levels contain younger wines.


The solera process is based on a technique of blending and partial renewal of the wine. Each year, part of the wine is taken from the lower level, the solera, to be bottled. This levy is then replaced by an equivalent quantity of wine from the level immediately above, called "first criadera". This process is repeated year after year, always leaving part of the initial wine in the solera. This method can sometimes be called “perpetual reserve”, registering on a time so long that this time does not even have any more course.


The wine thus mixed gradually acquires the characteristics of older wines, bringing complexity, richness and depth. Aromas and flavors develop over time through the influence of older wines on younger wines. The solera therefore makes it possible to maintain a certain continuity and constant identity in the style of the wine, while allowing a gradual evolution and improvement over the years. It is a delicate process that requires the expertise of the winemaker to ensure a harmonious balance between the different vintages.



HOW TO USE VINEGAR?


Its aromatic complexity and its length in the mouth make it a very good companion for all kinds of dishes: its acidity works very well to break up the fat in the cheese, its woody side due to its long aging will meet your summer grills, its fruity notes will go very well with a very vegetable salad.


You can also use the Pedro Ximénez vinegar to season the rice. your sushi, especially your sushi from smoked sardines!


It's up to you to compose your own chords and share them with us with #maisondehesa!


Good tasting!

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