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The 5 Best Balsamic Vinegars in 2022

The 5 Best Balsamic Vinegars in 2022

Balsamic vinegar is made by reducing unfermented grape juice—officially called “grape must”—and then cooking it down and aging it in wooden barrels to create a delicate flavor that expertly balances both sweet and sour. Traditionally, balsamic vinegar comes from Italy, and, as a general rule, vinegars that are produced in the Modena or Reggio Emilia regions are considered the highest quality.

There are few cheeses more iconic than sharp, nutty Parmesan—a product so widely respected in the dairy industry that its nickname, even among competing cheesemakers, is simply “The King of Cheeses.” In the United States, it’s often grated and used as a topping, but if that’s the only way you’ve ever tried it, you’re missing half the fun—in Italy, Parmesan cheese is routinely broken into nuggets and popped straight into the mouth, sometimes with a drizzle of aged balsamic vinegar as a bonus. Many Italians even keep a special tool for this purpose, a small, spade-shaped knife that looks a bit like a steel guitar pick affixed to a handle. Insert the tip into the wedge, pry it forward, and voilà, a hunk of cheese breaks off, cracking along the craggy fault lines of its crystalline structure.  
 

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But some of these types of vinegars can get expensive. We’re talking $150 to 300 per bottle, with some rare varieties going up to $1,000. We know that most people don’t have that kind of cash to shell out on a bottle of balsamic vinegar, however.
The VSOP 25-Year Barrel-Aged Balsamic Vinegar, a Williams-Sonoma exclusive
But some of these types of vinegars can get expensive. We’re talking $150 to 300 per bottle, with some rare varieties going up to $1,000. We know that most people don’t have that kind of cash to shell out on a bottle of balsamic vinegar, however.   The VSOP 25-Year Barrel-Aged Balsamic Vinegar, a Williams-Sonoma exclusive, checked all of the necessary boxes, earning it the spot of best overall balsamic vinegar. Crafted from unfermented white Trebbiano grape juice and then aged in wooden oak barrels, this balsamic vinegar has a rich aroma and flavor with the perfect balance of sweetness and tartness to finish off any meal (or dessert) Traditional Balsamic Vinegar of Modena must come from specific regions of Italy, be produced in the traditional way, and be judged by tasters before it can be bottled in a specific style of bottle, with a numbered seal affixed. All of these steps add to the cost of the vinegar, but also ensure a better product overall. Some balsamic vinegars can be expensive, but price isn’t always synonymous with taste, and the Kitchen & Love Premium Balsamic Vinegar proves that. The premium balsamic vinegar is made in Medona, Italy, with non-GMO2 ingredients and minimal processing. It has a light, palate-pleasing flavor that’s ideal for salad dressings, sauces, and dipping. The low acidity and subtle flavor of the OMG! Classic Barrel-Aged Balsamic Vinegar makes it an ideal option for dipping a warm crusty piece of bread, straight from the oven (or your local bakery’s oven). With the Ellora Farms Balsamic Vinegar Spray, your days of drenching parts of your salad while under-dressing others are over. Ellora Farms crafts its balsamic vinegar from red grapes that are grown in vineyards in Crete, Greece, and then ages them in oak barrels for six months to create a premium quality balsamic vinegar with balanced sweet and sour flavors that make the perfect complement to all types of foods. Made by further reducing balsamic vinegar to boil off excess water, the Colavita Balsamic Glaze takes viscosity to a whole new level. The thickened glaze, which is crafted in Italy, has just the right balance of tartness and sweetness, making it an ideal grilling sauce for meat, chicken, fish, and vegetables. It’s also an excellent option for drizzling as a finishing glaze on salads, cheese, pasta dishes, fresh fruits, or desserts.
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