Unforgettable, artisan vinegars
A well-balanced vinegar is a beautiful thing. Not only can it brighten dishes or be sipped on its own to augment a meal, but it can also help balance the body’s pH. And when you have botanical vinegars infused with a balance of aphrodisiac flowers, herbs and spices…well then the possibilities are endless! That’s why we’re featuring Rozendal Botanical Vinegars.
But these aren’t just any botanical vinegars. Rozendal’s vinegars are made on a family estate in Stellenbosch, South Africa. The vinegars are crafted in the traditional French Orleans method. Rozendal uses a blend of red wine cultivars and the same “mother” that they used since their very first batch of vinegar. The vinegars are then matured over a 12-year solera system. The result is a well-balanced balsamic-style vinegar…But one that’s enhanced with natural botanicals.
It’s not just the time and care in crafting Rozendal’s botanical vinegars that makes them so memorable. It’s the unique and aphrodisiac flavors that have us talking about this unusual, artisan brand.
Flavoring these botanical vinegars
Rozendal’s vinegars are subtly flavored with surprising flavor combinations. The current line of botanical vinegars includes Hibiscus, which is blended with subtle notes of rosehip, elderflower and vanilla. (Learn more about the aphrodisiac potential of hibiscus.)
There’s also a Green Tea Vinegar with subtle notes of carob, chili, bay leaf and kelp. The most traditional flavor is Lavender, made with flowers grown on the property.
But my favorite flavor is one called Fynbos. The most unique of the botanical vinegars, the flavor is a combination of butchu. It’s a flowering plant from the Western Cape mountains known in traditional medicine as a “pick me up” herb. The butchu is blended with honeybush tea, wild olive, rose geranium and wild rosemary.
The resulting combination is a wild flavor roller coaster of sweet, savory and herbal. It’s definitely a vinegar for adventurous eaters.
Where to buy
You could hop a plane to Stellenbosch, (technically Cape Town–you’ll have to drive from there). The farm offers accommodations in 16 charming-looking suites. (After looking at the website, I hope the destination is in my future!) But more practical would be to check out your local specialty grocer.
Many local specialty shops, like Zingerman’s, carry them. The botanical vinegars are distributed throughout the United States. You might also check Amazon. The retailing giant carries them from time to time.
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