About the manufacturer:
Ponti is a fifth generation family business started in the 1830s as a wine and vinegar producer in Sizzano (Novara), Italy. From the very beginning, the company has followed a steady course of innovation and production improvement, with a parallel strategy of acquiring competing operations, bringing an ever-increasing market share and establishing Ponti's image outside Italy. In 1941, the company entered the canned vegetables sector and in 1991 began producing balsamic vinegar in the Modena region. Today, Ponti is the largest wine vinegar producer in Europe.
Balsamic vinegar is the product of so-called "cooked musts", which are made from 7 grape varieties and wine vinegar is added to them. The contents are cooked in an open vessel slowly and over low heat to concentrate and unlock their bouquet of characteristic rich flavours. The vinegar thus prepared is subsequently left to mature in oak troughs. The most precious types mature for up to 25 years. The production of the original balsamic vinegar requires certain grape varieties and technology, which is monitored by a special agency throughout the process. The product usually bears a stamp certifying its origin, and the original balsamic vinegar comes only from the Modena region because of the specific yeasts that exist there.
Balsamic vinegar is slightly alcoholic as it is obtained from grape juice that is boiled before it is fermented. In addition to its taste, balsamic vinegar is also known for its health properties. It is a rich source of potassium, manganese, calcium and iron. It is low in calories, cholesterol and sodium, making it a healthy alternative as a sauce for salads and marinades. Relative to mayonnaise-based products, balsamic vinegar reaches up to 1/5 of the calories for the corresponding amount.
The original balsamic vinegar has a glossy hue (similar to syrup), velvety texture and rich complex taste. Denominazione di Origine Protetta' - DOP (Product of a protected region) is stamped on the bottle or label. Balsamic vinegar with 'Condimento' on the label means that the product does not meet the maturation period criterion or is produced in an area other than Modena. The third case is where the product is made from grape varieties found in Modena but grown outside it and only the final product is produced there ('Indicazione Geografica Protetta' - IGP).