POSTED SEPTEMBER 17, 2019


Vinegar is one of the most versatile products on the market and for over 10,000 years, people have been using vinegar in an endless number of ways. The most common varieties include distilled, balsamic, and red wine vinegar.

The Process

The process to create vinegar involves two steps, alcoholic fermentation and acid fermentation. Alcoholic fermentation is the first step in creating vinegar and during this process, yeasts converts natural sugars (fruits, or any material containing sugar) to alcohol under controlled conditions. The next step involves acid fermentation, where a group of bacteria, known as Acetobacter, converts a portion of alcohol into acid, which then turns into vinegar.

Distilled Vinegar

One of the most common, well-known vinegars is clear, distilled vinegar. Distilled vinegar starts out with a high acidity and is diluted with water to between 5% and 7% concentration. This vinegar has no added flavor, no added colors and is used for numerous applications, such as adding a splash of acidic flavor to salad dressings, food jarring and canning industrial food processes.

Balsamic Vinegar

Balsamic vinegar is made differently from other types of vinegars. This vinegar goes through only one step of fermentation and then ages in barrels. The vinegar goes through a slow reduction which concentrates the cooked grape must into the thick balsamic. Grape must is the concentration of fresh grape juice that contains the skins, seeds and stems of the grape. The more grape must a vinegar contains, the more flavorful the vinegar will be. Most balsamic vinegars are made in a specific region of Italy, such as Modena. Traditional balsamic vinegars are aged up to 3 years. Cento’s select balsamic vinegar is aged over 3 years in oak barrels, which provide the final product with an acidic but sweet taste. Balsamic Vinegar of Modena contains a I.G.P logo (Protected Geographic Indication) located on the bottle. This logo certifies that the vinegar is produced and matured only in the regions of Modena and Reggio Emilia.

Our Balsamic Vinegars and their Uses


Cento Invecchiato Platino Aged Balsamic Vinegar of Modena

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Cento Invecchiato Platino Aged Balsamic Vinegar of Modena

  • Flavor Profile: Sweet and Syrupy with higher percentage of grape must
  • Aging: more than 3 years
  • Use: Cheese topper or for special occasions
Cento Balsamic Vinegar Select of Modena

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Cento Balsamic Vinegar Select of Modena

  • Flavor Profile: Hints of cherry oak
  • Aging: more than 3 years
  • Use: Grilling meat and fish
Cento Balsamic Vinegar of Modena

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Cento Balsamic Vinegar of Modena

  • Flavor Profile: Traditional tart taste, made with average grape must
  • Aging: 3 years
  • Use: Salad dressings

White Balsamic Vinegar

White balsamic vinegar is unique. Many chefs use this vinegar because of its clear color that will not turn a salad dressing or sauce the dark color that a traditional balsamic vinegar would. White balsamic vinegar is also produced differently than traditional balsamic. Though each process starts with the same white Trebbiano grapes, with this vinegar, the white-grape must is pressure-cooked to prevent it from browning before it’s aged for a short time.

Cento White Balsamic Vinegar

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Cento White Balsamic Vinegar of Italy

  • Flavor Profile: Balanced acidity and sweetness
  • Aging: less than 3 years
  • Use: Roasted vegetables, rissoto, chicken and pasta

Red Wine Vinegar

Wine vinegar is obtained specifically from the wine acetic fermentation, which is a process of oxidation where alcohol is converted into acetic acid by Acetobacter agencies. Red wine vinegar is made through careful selection of first quality red wine from Italy. The wine is fermented until it turns sour. Once the fermentation process is complete, the vinegar can be strained and bottled or left to age. Red wine vinegar can be aged up to two years. The longer it is left to age, the more muted the flavors will be. It is also important to note, even after straining the vinegar a small amount of sediment will still remain at the bottom of the bottle. This sediment, known as Mother of the Vinegar, is completely harmless and a natural part of the process. Red wine vinegar can be used in sauces, salad dressings, and for pickling.

Cento Red Wine Vinegar

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Cento Red Wine Vinegar

  • Flavor Profile: Acidic and mildly fruity
  • Use: Marinades and sautéed vegetables

Balsamic Glaze

Balsamic glaze is made by blending and cooking down balsamic vinegar and a type of sweetener, such as honey or brown sugar. Cento Italian Glaze with Aceto Balsamico di Modena IGP, is a sweet, tart glaze made from Balsamic Vinegar of Modena. This glaze pairs well with everything from meats and roasted vegetables to cheese plates and fruit. The concentrated flavor of our Italian glaze adds a depth of flavor and sophistication to any dish, and the precision spout ensures you get the perfect amount every time. Balsamic glaze is also used by chefs for added decoration in producing professional and artistic dish presentations.

Cento Balsamic Glaze

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Cento Balsamic Glaze

  • Flavor Profile: Sweet and tart
  • Use: Cheese plates, Fruit, Roasted Vegetables