The story of aceto balsamico dates back to 1077, when the German emperor Henry IV made his famous trek to Canossa. When he arrived, the first thing he asked for was a bottle of ‘laudatum acetum’: the famous aceto balsamico from the Province of Reggio Emilia.
The grapes from this area were too acidic to make wine, and sweeteners such as honey were scarce. The noble families came up with another way to use their harvest and boiled the must from overripe grapes into a thick liquid. They then aged this liquid in wooden barrels, which were stored in draughty attics, for a number of years. The process of evaporation and aging, as well as the use of different types of wood for the barrels, produced an aromatic and beautifully tart liquid.
Aceto balsamico producers are increasingly adding their own twist to this traditional – and expensive – method of production; grape must is replaced by wine vinegar or a grape must concentrate, and caramel is added for colour and sweetness.
San Mauro Aceto Balsamico di Mosto Cotto is made using the old production method, using pure must from trebbiano and lambrusco grape varieties typical of the Province of Modena. The reduced must is aged naturally in oak barrels for 8 years and does not contain any additives.
San Mauro Aceto Balsamic Mosto Cotto has a dark brown shiny colour, is the consistency of syrup and has a long-lasting aroma and intense flavour. It strikes the perfect balance between sweet and sour. A few drops are more than enough to enhance the flavour of both cold and hot dishes.