White wine vinegar is made from white wine and is a commonly used vinegar in Central Europe and the Mediterranean. It is made by the acetous fermentation of a selected blend of white wines. White wine vinegar has a lower acidity than white or cider vinegars. The finished product is a clear, almost colourless pale gold. The aroma is similar to white wine, while the taste is distinctly acidic. There is a range of quality with white wine vinegar, as there is with white wine. Better quality wine vinegars are more expensive, matured in wood for up to two years to accomplish a complex, mellow flavour. White wine vinegar is a great addition to a chef's cupboard.
White wine vinegar is used by experienced cooks to enhance flavours in recipes. A sprinkle on melons and strawberries brings out the flavour in the fruit. For example, white wine vinegar makes a flavourful melon sorbet. It gives spicy marinades like teriyaki and salsas and unexpected zing. White wine vinegar also wakes up the flavours in basic sauces and glazes and is used in French Hollandaise and Béarnaise sauces.
The distinctive taste helps in the fight against high blood pressure. White wine vinegar is low in sodium. The tart, tangy flavour of white wine vinegar reduces the need for salt in recipes. Try it as a seasoning for vegetables such as cauliflower, green beans, broccoli and cabbage. A dash of white wine vinegar on steak and fish is a satisfying flavour booster.
White wine vinegar is an ideal ingredient for lighter cooking styles. A splash of white wine vinegar is a substitute for heavy butter in cream. It balances flavours in dishes without adding fat. For example, a usually fat heavy white butter sauce is accomplished with only two tablespoons of butter with the addition of white wine vinegar. A variety of diet conscious salad dressing are also accomplished with white wine vinegar.