A vinegar for all occasion
Wine vinegar s are as diverse as wine itself.
If the label indicates "wine vinegar 'à l'ancienne'", this means it has been made using the Orléans method, however if there is no indication on the label, this means it has been produced using an immersion method, then aged in oak casks. Vinaigre de Vin Vieux (Aged wine vinegar) is a vinegar made using an aged wine.
An essential store-cupboard basic, its powerful taste goes well in salads and emulsified sauces.
A red wine vinegar is a better choice for tender salads and red meats. Crunchy salads, white meats, poultry and fish tend to go better with white wine vinegar.
Made using whole apples, this vinegar contains the most mineral salts (potassium, phosphorus, magnesium, calcium, sulphur, iron, fluoride, silicon).
Reputed for its health benefits, it has a low acidity (5°) and its fruity aroma complements poultry and apples or mushroom salad.
According to purists, diluted in water with honey and consumed daily, it is a cure-all!
White or crystal vinegar
Perfectly transparent, it is made from beetroot alcohol and is mainly used for conserving food and condiments such as gherkins and onions, or famously, for making pickles.
Made in Spain in the Jerez region, this vinegar is very rich-tasting.
It is made using a particular method of ageing called "Criaderas y Soleras".
It goes marvellously in creamed artichoke sauce, chicory salad and veal liver. Use a few drops to deglaze chicken or duck juices from the pan. It also marries perfectly with walnut oil!
This fine and full-bodied vinegar, is rich, aromatic and typically mediterranean. It is made from the natural sweet wine of Banyuls which is aged for 4 years in oak casks exposed to the sun. It is acetified using traditional methods, then matured in barrels for 12 months. Excellent in marinades, or for spicing up mayonnaise and fish salads.
This Italian vinegar from the Modena region is prepared with white grape must and sugar is added. Then it ferments for a long period in hardwood barrels (oak, chestnut, cherry, ash, mulberry).
It is almost black in colour and has a sweet aromatic vanilla and caramel taste.
Chemically speaking, balsamic vinegar is not actually a vinegar because it is not made from an alcoholic liquid but directly from grape juice.
Its concentrated smooth taste is the perfect accompaniment for salads, fish, white meats…
It goes particularly well with olive oil.
Flavoured or fragrant vinegar
All vinegars, however they are produced, can be flavoured.
To give vinegar a particular taste, aromatic plants (tarragon, mint, shallot, garlic…) or fruits (raspberries, lemon, cranberries…) can be added. Simply steeping the plant in the liquid is enough to give it the desired aroma.
Aromatic extracts can also be added to vinegars, in this case it will be labelled "vinegar flavoured with…".
Vinegar flavoured with raspberry is ideal for deglazing a pan to make a sauce, mint flavoured vinegar makes a perfect ingredient in tabboulé, spices in vinegar will liven up a slightly bland dish.
Made by fermenting grains of barley, this vinegar is produced in Great-Britain. Amber-coloured, very mild flavoured and slightly sharp, this vinegar is used in sweet-and-sour dishes. It is perfect in chutneys and complements all sweet and savoury dishes.
This vinegar is produced in Switzerland. It is made from skimmed milk transformed into a liquor in order to undergo acetic fermentation.
It is rich in oligo-elements as well as vitamin B.
This amber-yellow coloured vinegar has a very distinctive taste. It is said to aid digestion and is often called dietary vinegar.
This vinegar originates from Asia, it is red in colour and often white in Japan. It has a low acidity (4°) and is one of the basic ingredients in Asian cuisine. It is widely used, in fish dishes as well as sushi, chicken or braised meats.
This is actually a cider vinegar originating from Canada in which blueberries are soaked, which give it its attractive violet colour.