The Fermentations of Life
At Rozendal we navigate by nature’s rhythms. We plant and harvest, produce and transform. Our orientation to organic farming and healthy eating transfers onto our practices and produce. And that is why we love natural fermentations. It is fermentation that transforms our wine to vinegar, a magical alchemy that yields a Balsam good for body and soul. These are the natural fermentations of life.
For centuries people have been preserving and pickling yet these traditions lost their way in a bid for modern convenience and fast foods. However trends have changed with time and the growing consciousness about the nutritional value of foods as a way to enhance our lives.
Moreover, gourmands the world over are incorporating Kombucha and kimchi, pickles and vinegars onto their plates and this growth in demand means that fermented products are not only the preserve of artisanal markets but are now widely available in supermarkets and health stores. This is a nod to the punch of a good pickle and a yes to the yeast involved in the process of natural fermentation.
The transformation of cabbage into sauerkraut, grapes into wine, and wine to vinegar is the kind of magic that occurs when natural yeasts, bacteria and other microbes chemically break down the food being fermented. Naturally fermented foods preserve nutrients, break food down into digestible form and unleash probiotics that are good for the gut.
At Rozendal we use natural fermentation to convert our wine to vinegar using the good old acetobacter bacteria to create the all-important alchemy.
It is up to the Vinaigrier to create favourable conditions for these vinegar bacteria to operate optimally to allow the conversion of alcohol into acetic acid – the primary component of the finished product. The quality of the final product is directly linked to the quality of the wine used, and the time allowed for the final vinegar to mature and soften into something that is good enough to drink.
Thankfully our efforts have been appreciated with accolades and joys of delight as the herbal infusions are incorporated in the profile of our balsamic-styled vinegars.
Herbal infusions into fermented foods are also making heroes of the vegetable with pickled peppers incorporated into salads and preserved garlic singing in stews – there’s no room for boring as foodies around the world grab pickled solutions over the bland and standard.