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Balsamic vinegar in cocktails [new features SIAL 2022]

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Balsamic vinegar was in the spotlight in France’s 2022 edition of the World Food Fair (SIAL). Two products, in particular, caught our attention: the “balsamic gin” from Leonardi (Italy) and the Cocktail Spark from Daregal (France). These two innovative products based on balsamic vinegar show that this category can be renewed and has very good days ahead.

The innovations of the 2018 edition did not represent this very classic product.

Balsamic vinegar market statistics

  • Balsamic vinegar is the engine of growth for the vinegar market
  • The vinegar market has only declined by 4.3% due to the war in Ukraine (figures for the French market)
  • At the end of 2021, the forecast for the seasoning and condiment market was – 0.4% in value and – 0.7% in volume. Since the war in Ukraine, the market has been down by 2.5%.
  • For France, it represents 2.35 billion euros in value.
    Outside Italy, balsamic vinegar represents about 40% of the total vinegar market in value

Casa Leonardi’s “balsamic gin”: an innovation based on white balsamic vinegar

Leonardi is one of the most traditional producers of balsamic vinegar in Modena. The company has existed for 150 years and is part of a network of small Italian SMEs committed to respecting traditions and product quality. The brand is only distributed in a network of delicatessens.

Balsamic gin Leonard SIAL 2022

At SIAL 2022, Leonardi presented an innovation developed entirely in-house. It consists of 4 varieties of non-alcoholic spirits made with balsamic vinegar:

  • Reserve
  • Cinnamon
  • White
  • Orange

Each balsamic spirit has its personality, and the combination with the gin works very well. This condiment is made from 5-year-old white vinegar and infused with natural herbs and spices. The result is a highly concentrated product with strong, persistent, distinct flavors. One or two spoons are enough to create a gin and tonic.

The bottles are sold for less than 10 euros in Leonardi’s store in Modena.


Spark cocktail: a cocktail of balsamic vinegar, fruits, and herbs

The other innovation we liked was presented by Daregal, a company that originally specialized in aromatic herbs. The acquisition of A l’Olivier in 2019 opened up new opportunities, which materialized in launches in 2022. Its Spark Cocktails is one of them.

Cocktail Spark Daregal SIAL 2022

Again, this is a ready-to-use mix to make cocktails. The recipes are a little more “daring” than Leonardi’s. The fruit is certainly more present since the product contains 40% of fruit puree. Visually we are also more distant from the classic balsamic vinegar with strong colors.

The result is very refreshing in the mouth and can be perfectly combined with sparkling water. The bottle of 200 ml is sold for 10€.


To conclude

This is the new growth area for vinegars. Balsamic vinegar is boosting the category. The offer remained modest for years with balsamic vinegar from Modena that played on the age to differentiate themselves.

In 2022, a new wind is blowing, which allows us to add interesting variations and invent new uses. Balsamic vinegar is very sweet but keeps a nice acidity that opens the door to other uses.

The new products from Leonardi and Daregal presented at SIAL 2022 show that it is possible to propose two distinct solutions for the same application, cocktails. In the first case, the recipe is based on infusions (Leonardi), and the other (Daregal) on a more complex mixture based on fruit puree.

Let’s bet that these products will be a great success among mixology enthusiasts and those looking for non-alcoholic mixes.

 

 

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Author: Pierre-Nicolas Schwab

Dr. Pierre-Nicolas Schwab is the founder of IntoTheMinds. He specializes in e-commerce, retail and logistics. He is also a research fellow in the marketing department of the Free University of Brussels and acts as a coach for several startups and public organizations. He holds a PhD in Marketing, a MBA in Finance, and a MSc in Chemistry. He can be contacted by email, Linkedin or by phone (+32 486 42 79 42)

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