Today we want to inaugurate a new section, so to speak, in our blog. We want to talk about the tradition of Balsamic Vinegar in Modena. We want to introduce you, through a series of interviews, the true people from Modena and their tradition, because it is rare for a “Modenese” family to buy Balsamic Vinegar at the supermarket; in fact, they tend to produce it and consume it in the family. As some families gather their olives to have the “own” oil at home all year round,” the good one”, some families in Modena have their own “batteria” (array) in their attics to have their own Balsamic Vinegar and to have the possibility to use Balsamic Vinegar with known origin.
But first let’s talk about a bit of the history: everyone in Modena and Reggio Emilia has or has had to do with Balsamic Vinegar: there are many families in the attics of their homes, whether they are in the countryside or in the city, who have set up a battery of barrels to produce vinegar for domestic consumption.
The tradition of Balsamic Vinegar in Modena is very ancient: almost every family had at least a battery of ageing barrels in the attic, and the customs is that every female daughter who was going to get married brought in dowry an array of Balsamic Vinegar, the more barrels a woman had and the more her dowry is precious.
According to the tradition it is the female part that keeps the Balsamic Vinegar cellar, today this tradition is outdated. Balsamic Vinegar has always been a product that is passed on from generation to generation in the same family, so there are no two identical vinegar cellars because they are the result of the owner’s personality and family history. Unfortunately, there has been cases in which a Balsamic Vinegar cellar has ruined due to the disappearance of their offspring or family breakdowns.
Many people have therefore been able to get to know the gestures and operations that have always accompanied the work in a Balsamic Vinegar cellar: everyone has their own memories about Traditional Balsamic Vinegar, an idea of tradition, family and skilled practices.
We will resend soon to talk again about The tradition of Balsamic Vinegar in Modena!