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Old 09-21-2007, 06:14 PM   #31
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Originally Posted by Andy M. View Post

GB, wouldn't the seal only be present on vinegars produced within a consortium? Balsamic vinegars are produced outside the two major consortia and would not carry any seal but would still be real balsamics. In the same vein as chianti only being produced in the chianti region and within a consortium. Otherwise, it's a Sangiovese.
Yes Andy. My apologies for misleading information. You are correct.
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Old 09-21-2007, 06:23 PM   #32
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I’m not sure what the point is here though.
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...whether it be motherland artisanal balsamic, or commercially produced non-traditional. And since we are here in America where 98% of the Balsamic vinegar sold is going to be non-traditional, I’m not sure what use it is in pursuing the purists line of thought in what “true” is since we can’t get it, at least not that readily, and not at a price most of us want to pay.
The point is that we are discussing balsamic vinegar and just because the mass media and mass food producers of the US have decided to jump on the bandwagon and call any sweet dark vinegar balsamic just to sell their product, well that does not not make it balsamic. Balsamic can be bought here without too much effort and for a price that most can afford. You do not have to pay $100 for an ounce of the real stuff. You can probably get a decent bottle for $30 in you travel outside of your local supermarket.

I guess the point is that this website is about food and something we try to do is educate people. If someone wants to buy a "non traditional" balsamic that isn't really balsamic then that is great and more power to them. They should know what they are getting though. I have 4 or 5 different non traditional balsamics in my cabinet right now and I enjoy using them. I know they are not the real thing though.
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Old 09-21-2007, 06:33 PM   #33
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Oh gosh guys, I love the in-depth discussions that happen here at DC. The fact is, I had no idea that there was a difference in the 2 types of vinegar and I appreciate everything I learned in this thread today. I promise, I won't go out and mortgage my house to buy a bottle of the best balsamic, and I won't stop using vinegar completely now that I know it's not the best. But now that I know there is some really amazing balsamic out there, I'll be on the look out for the opportunity to try it. Thanks again for all the info!
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Old 09-21-2007, 06:36 PM   #34
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You have the perfect attitude Fisher's Mom!
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Old 09-21-2007, 07:03 PM   #35
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GB View Post
The point is that we are discussing balsamic vinegar and just because the mass media and mass food producers of the US have decided to jump on the bandwagon and call any sweet dark vinegar balsamic just to sell their product, well that does not not make it balsamic. Balsamic can be bought here without too much effort and for a price that most can afford. You do not have to pay $100 for an ounce of the real stuff. You can probably get a decent bottle for $30 in you travel outside of your local supermarket.

I guess the point is that this website is about food and something we try to do is educate people. If someone wants to buy a "non traditional" balsamic that isn't really balsamic then that is great and more power to them. They should know what they are getting though. I have 4 or 5 different non traditional balsamics in my cabinet right now and I enjoy using them. I know they are not the real thing though.
True, I see your point. While some of the differences are strictly about manufacturing methods, it must be considered that manufacturing methods can impact flavor. I was thinking on my ride home about BBQ. True BBQ ribs are done low and slow in a smoker, but you can easily do them in the oven. Cover both in sauce, and they look the same, and both are fall of the bone tender……but oven ribs don’t have that little difference of a smoke ring and that smokey flavor.

In some cases, the a quicker methodology doesn’t make that much of a difference, look at how milk is gathered today compared to milk of yesterday. The methodology of collecting milk has changed and gotten much quicker……does that mean it’s not true milk though? It’s an interesting question.

My FIL was stationed in Italy, and he had true balsamic vinegar, and he described it as a dessert sauce that was drizzled over a dessert dish. He said it was sweet and he couldn’t figure out why “those crazy Italians called it vinegar”. I suppose he had the really old and aged stuff.

Even if they sold true Balsamic at every corner store here (but how could little Modena supply that much product in the artisanal fashion), I would still prefer an immature 2 leaf version that had a noticeable vinegar bite to it. I’m not much for sweets and dessert sauces, so I’d never have much use for anything beyond 2 leaf anyway.

The first Balsamic I ever had was at a friend’s place where they served it plain over salad. It was from Modena, and I’d describe it as a 2 leaf vinegar. It was sweet and had a nice vinegar twang. Years later, and this could be because it’s been so long and I don’t have a side-by-side comparison, but the Balsamics I’m buying today don’t say they are from Modena, but they taste just as good as that one I had back then, and that one back then was certainly a “true” balsamic.
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Old 09-21-2007, 07:07 PM   #36
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Strawberries dipped in Balsamic vinegar are delicious.
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Old 09-21-2007, 07:12 PM   #37
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Strawberries dipped in Balsamic vinegar are delicious.
Would that be a 3 leaf or 4 leaf Balsamic????
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