In a nutshell: This is a brilliant Christmas gift for anyone who wants to start making their own vinegar in one of our stylish French oak vinegar barrels. Each striking barrel comes with a bottle of delicious unpasteurised Banyuls red wine vinegar and instructions on how to start your very own vinegar production.
This is our smallest entry-level vinegar barrel, perfect for small kitchen's where space is at a premium. Kept in the kitchen, it will become a much admired item as you turn the tap to siphon off some home made vinegar. Ideal also for creative chefs who would also like to make their own fruit or herb infused vinegars, single varietal wine or cider vinegars. It's also the perfect piece of kit for adventurous barman and can be used to make home made Vermouth or Amaro, fruit and vinegar based Shrub syrups or store spirits such as grappa, whisky or Rye.
Made at the La Guinelle vinaigrerie above the hamlet of Cosprons, overlooking the bay of Paulille on the Mediterranean, this vinegar is made slowly and uses only Banyuls sweet wine, an AOC fortified apéritif or dessert wine made from 50% and up to 75% Grenache grapes from local vineyards. Aged outdoors underneath the Mediterranean sun, this Banyuls red wine vinegar has a vibrant red colour and delightful aroma of berry fruits. It has become a staple in our kitchen where we drizzle it over our everyday salads, add it to slow-roasted vegetables in the oven, marinate our herrings and anchovies with it, splash over grilled meats and fish and sprinkle it over strawberries and other berry fruits.
- 3 litre (height 24cm, top width 16cm, base width 21cm), wooden or stainless steel tap, please specify when ordering.
- Banyuls Vinegar, 500ml, 6° acidity.
Sourced from one of the best French cooperage firms used by leading cognac and Bordeaux wine companies, each barrel is made with sustainable French oak. Aged for 24 months before being handed over to the master coopers who then go to work on each handmade barrel. Toasting the wooden planks over an open fire before cutting into staves and beginning the intricate process of "mise en rose" or 'raising the barrel' when the staves are first put together in a temporary end hoop. Then, using a combination of fire, steam and water, the staves are slowly bent into shape before they add the finishing touches - attaching the final galvanised hoops and painting a coat of light natural varnish on the outside.
About La Guinelle
We are proud to be the sole UK distributor for La Guinelle vinegars. These amazing vinegars are made by Nathalie Lefort in her charming open air vinaigrerie In Cosprons, a hillside village near Port-Vendres, overlooking the rocky Cote Vermeille coast close to Spain. Nathalie bought the small house at the end of a dusty lane in 1999 and soon after decided to revive the lost art of making artisan vinegar outdoors. Her philosophy is simple - " You need good wine to make great vinegar and you let nature do the rest." She uses the famous fortified red Banyuls dessert wine from local vineyards for her core vinegars, plus she also makes some limited production single grape varietal vinegars. Everything is done outdoors "en plein air", using an organic double fermentation process where the wines and vinegars are exposed to natural airborne bacteria in oak barrels for up to 8 months before further ageing in glass demijohns that are shaded from the sun. Discovered by top French chefs, we hope they will also find a spot in your kitchen as a great ingredient to add to favourite recipes, enhance many sauces, gravies and as a finishing ingredient used in the same way as a good quality extra virgin olive oil drizzled onto a dish.
Every year, Nathalie and her team only make about 10,000 bottles including some really interesting, and unique, single varietal and 'flavoured' vinegars which we will always endeavour to buy and stock before they run out.