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Thread: Balsamic vinegar

  1. #1

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    Default Balsamic vinegar

    I've heard someone say recently that balsamic vinegar isn't vegan, but they didn't know why that might be.

    Anyone know anything about this? I'm not that fussed, because while I used to be very keen on balsamic vinegar, I've gone of it lately in favour of more acidic vinegars.

    What do you know about vinegar generally, and balsamic specifically?

    Looking forward to hearing from yous.

    V*

  2. #2
    told me to Mr Flibble's Avatar
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    Default Re: Balsamic vinegar

    Balsamic vinegar can be vegan.

    As a grape based product the process of making it is similar to wine (infact cheap balsamic is wine vinegar + caramel + flavourings + sugar), so there's the clarification issue and filtration issue (if added sugar).
    "Mr Flibble - forum corruptor of innocents!!" - Hemlock

  3. #3

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    Default Re: Balsamic vinegar

    Traditional balsamic vinegar is made in Modena in Italy, near where I live . There are no reasons why it should not be vegan, apart from those mentioned by Mr F above.

    From Wikipedia:

    Traditional Balsamic vinegar is produced from the juice of just harvested white grapes (typically, trebbiano grapes) boiled down to approximately 30% of the original volume to create a concentrate or must, which is then fermented with a slow aging process which concentrates the flavours. The flavour intensifies over decades, with the vinegar being kept in fine wooden casks, becoming sweet, viscous and very concentrated. During this period, a proportion evaporates: it is said that this is the "angels' share," a term also used in the production of scotch whisky, wine, and other alcoholic beverages.
    None of the product may be withdrawn until the end of the minimum aging period of 12 years. At the end of the aging period (12, 18, or 25 years) a small proportion is drawn from the smallest cask and each cask is then topped up with the contents of the preceding (next largest) cask. Freshly reduced cooked must is added to the largest cask and in every subsequent year the drawing and topping up process is repeated. This aging process where the product is distributed from the oldest cask and then refilled from the next oldest vintage cask is called solera or in perpetuum.
    Authentic consortium approved Tradizionale is the product of centuries of experience as well as many years in barrels. For these reasons it sells for very high prices. Consortium-sealed 100 ml bottles can cost between US $100 and $400 each.

  4. #4

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    Default Re: Balsamic vinegar

    Ta muchly for both your replies. I've seen comments elsewhere in these fora that indicate some vinegars are marked 'vegan'. Unfortunately, not where I live. I'll have to try and find the Braggs Vegan Apple Cider Vinegar that's mentioned - that'll involve finding a decent health food shop still open in the 'Gong!

    Wish me luck.

  5. #5
    Mahk
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    Default Re: Balsamic vinegar

    Quote Mr Flibble View Post
    Balsamic vinegar can be vegan.

    As a grape based product the process of making it is similar to wine (infact cheap balsamic is wine vinegar + caramel + flavourings + sugar), so there's the clarification issue and filtration issue (if added sugar).
    Not just grape, too, apple juice is often clarified through animal compounds such as gelatin. All apple juice and grape juice and therefore any product that contains vinegar, grape flavoring, apple flavoring, grape/apple jams/jellies, etc is potential "not vegan". The give away when buying apple or grape juice is if it is translucent when held up to the light. If it is one can safely assume it has been treated with some compound which may be suspect. Apple juice that is cloudy and not translucent (like orange juice always is) can safely be assumed to be unfiltered and safe unless it makes some mention of being from a "blend" in which case one of the juices may have been clear but you wouldn't know it since it has been added to other cloudy ones.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Balsamic vinegar

    So could i safely assume that alcoholic ciders such as strongbow and five seeds are not vegan?

  7. #7
    told me to Mr Flibble's Avatar
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    Default Re: Balsamic vinegar

    You can assume they might not be vegan, but not that they either are or aren't.

    IIRC strongbow isn't vegan in the UK, but don't know either current status or whether the stuff you buy in AU is brewed using the same method.
    "Mr Flibble - forum corruptor of innocents!!" - Hemlock

  8. #8
    Staffy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Balsamic vinegar

    So i've been digging around and it seems there's only one vegan Cider here in australia but you can only get it in victoria.
    Vinegars are getting me a bit confused. They make vinegar as a by product of mine and juices and things right? And some of these are made using animal products? So some vinegars can be vegan and others not? Furthermore if thay are not all vegan, what do you do about a product that is completely vegan except that it lists vinegar as an ingredient?

  9. #9

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    Default Re: Balsamic vinegar

    Does anyone know if M&S Balsamic vinegar is vegan? They have some on their vegan list but none match the bar codes on the bottles.
    I bought the bog standard 1.65 version thinking that is most likely to be the one on the list

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Balsamic vinegar

    Balsamic vinegar can be non-vegan!?!

  11. #11

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    Default Re: Balsamic vinegar

    Yeah its made from wine, but I think most is vegan. I'm just being cautious!

  12. #12
    zazu's Avatar
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    Default Re: Balsamic vinegar

    yeah, I knew that wine can have non-vegan processing, I don't know why I didn't think to check balsamic vinegar too.

  13. #13

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    Default Re: Balsamic vinegar

    I think I am going to have to check the balsamic vinegar I have at home. I never thought to check it before. Thanks!

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