San Giacomo producer Andrea Bezzecchi tends to the same wooden barrels his grandfather used. Andrea, a brilliant balsamic scholar, says that drawing off some of the balsamic in the middle of the aging process has always been a common practice to produce a delicious, everyday condiment.
San Giacomo Balsamic condiment is made using only the same raw ingredients Andrea uses for traditional balsamic: grapes. The Trebbiano and Lambrusco local grapes are harvested each year at the peak of ripeness to ensure the optimal sugar content. The grape must is fermented in large barrels and aged in smaller barrels until it reaches the desired balance of flavors and aromas. After one or two years, it is fortified with balsamic vinegar matured in juniper, cherry, or acacia wood barrels.
Andrea named his company after Via San Giacomo Maggiore in Cognento di Campagnola, a small town near Reggio Emilia in the region of Emilia-Romagna. It is the street where Andrea's parents produced Lambrusco, balsamic vinegar, and other local products. In this region, it was customary to make a little bit of balsamic vinegar under your own roof. That's what happened to the Bezzecchi family, too. They inherited the battery of barrels used to make traditional balsamic from their grandparents. The Acetaia, or vinegar cellar, is now under Andrea's passionate and expert guidance.