Experience the Art of Balsamic Making in Reggio Emilia’s “Acetaie Aperte” Open Farms

The Aceto Balsamico Tradizionale di Reggio Emilia, or Traditional Balsamic Vinegar of Reggio Emilia, is a unique culinary product that embodies the rich history and tradition of the Emilia-Romagna region in northern Italy. Produced from the noble art of fermentation, maturation, and aging of cooked grape must in wooden barrels, this gastronomic gem has earned a significant place in the culinary world.

Aceto Balsamico Tradizionale di Reggio Emilia

The making of Aceto Balsamico Tradizionale di Reggio Emilia traces its roots back to ancient times. It was a highly prized condiment in the noble courts of the Duchy of Modena and Reggio Emilia. The meticulous process of crafting this elixir has been handed down from generation to generation, becoming an essential part of the region’s cultural heritage.

The production process begins with cooking grape must over a direct flame until its volume is reduced by half. This must is then left to ferment naturally in a series of barrels made from different types of wood, such as chestnut, cherry, oak, mulberry, ash, and juniper. This array of barrels imparts distinctive characteristics and complexity to the vinegar.

The maturation process, which lasts a minimum of 12 years, involves a unique method called the ‘solera system’. This entails annually transferring a small quantity of vinegar from a larger barrel to a smaller one in the series. The largest barrel is then refilled with new cooked must. This process yields a vinegar with a complex, multi-layered taste profile and a balance of sweet and sour flavors.

Traditional Balsamic Vinegar of Reggio Emilia is classified into three categories based on its aging process:

Lobster Label: Aged for a minimum of 12 years. This vinegar has a rich, full-bodied flavor, perfect for salad dressings or drizzling over vegetables.
Silver Label: Aged for a minimum of 18 years. This vinegar is denser and more complex, suitable for grilled meats or fish.
Gold Label: Aged for a minimum of 25 years. This precious condiment offers the most complex and nuanced flavors, ideal for cheese, fruits, or even desserts.

Like any artisanal product, the production of Aceto Balsamico Tradizionale di Reggio Emilia is governed by strict regulations to maintain its authenticity and quality. The Consortium of Producers of the Traditional Balsamic Vinegar of Reggio Emilia oversees these rules and also carries out rigorous tasting tests before the vinegar can carry the DOP (Denominazione di Origine Protetta) label.

Beyond its unique taste and rich history, Aceto Balsamico Tradizionale di Reggio Emilia also tells a story of the Italian passion for good food, heritage, and meticulous craftsmanship. This enchanting condiment continues to win the hearts of gourmets worldwide, and is a testament to the culinary tradition and excellence of the Emilia-Romagna region.

Discover the traditional craft of balsamic vinegar production at the heart of Reggio Emilia during the “Acetaie Aperte” (“Open Vinegar Factories”) event, held on April 15-16, 2023. This annual occasion offers a unique opportunity for food enthusiasts, culinary professionals, and curious travellers to tour local acetaie (vinegar factories) and engage with the passionate artisans who uphold this centuries-old Italian tradition.

Here are the acetaie you can visit during the Acetaie Aperte event:

Acetaia Al Livel is a renowned balsamic vinegar producer located in the beautiful town of Gualtieri at Via Pieve 94/A. This charming establishment warmly welcomes visitors who are interested in experiencing their exquisite balsamic vinegar production process. To make an appointment to visit Acetaia Al Livel, you can reach out to Simonazzi Fabio via email at [email protected] or by calling 0522 22 00 31. The visiting hours are as follows: 9:00 am to 12:00 pm and 3:00 pm to 6:00 pm on both Saturdays and Sundays. This is a unique opportunity to witness firsthand the meticulous crafting of their exceptional balsamic vinegar. Don’t miss out on this unforgettable experience at Acetaia Al Livel!

Acetaia Comunale Rupe di Canossa
A visit to this vinegar factory at Loc. Canossa, 22 in Castello di Canossa is guaranteed to be an enlightening experience. Get in touch with Cortesi Stefano at [email protected] or call 343 06 777 to schedule a visit. The factory is open from 10:30 – 12:30 and 14:30 – 18:00 on both days.

Acetaia Comunale Villa Tarabini
Located in Albinea at Via G. Garibaldi 17, Acetaia Comunale Villa Tarabini doesn’t require reservations for visits on Saturday from 16:00 – 18:00 and Sunday from 10:00 – 12:00 and 16:00 – 18:00. Contact Antonella Melloni via [email protected] or [email protected] for more information.

Acetaia Stella
Address: Via dei Mille 97, Reggio Emilia
Contact Person: Giacomo Stella
Phone: 349 72 91 512
Email: [email protected]
Company Website: www.acetaiastella.it
Visiting Hours: Saturday 9:00 – 13:00 15:00 – 19:00; Sunday 10:00 – 13:00 15:00 – 18:00
Reservation Required: NO
Additional Info: Acetaia Stella has been producing traditional balsamic vinegar for generations, maintaining the highest level of quality and authenticity.

Acetaia Vignoli
Address: Via Antica Locanda 7, Cavriago (RE)
Contact Person: Luca Vignoli
Phone: 0522 94 78 89 – 334 85 46 012
Email: [email protected]
Company Website: www.acetaiavignoli.it
Visiting Hours: Saturday and Sunday 10:00 – 18:00

Az. Agr. Iotti Andrea – Acetaia Castelli
Address: Via Castelli 5, Rio Saliceto (RE)
Contact Person: Andrea Iotti
Phone: 333 83 27 873
Email: [email protected]
Company Website: www.acetaiacastelli.it
Visiting Hours: Saturday 09:00 – 12:30 15:00 – 18:00; Sunday 10:00 – 13:00
Reservation Required: YES
Additional Info: Acetaia Castelli, run by Andrea Iotti, is a family-owned establishment that values tradition. The company is known for its quality vinegar, produced using age-old techniques.

Az. Agr. Lucenti
Address: Via Serraglio 11, Loc. Roteglia, Castellarano (RE)
Contact Person: Federica Lucenti
Phone: 339 83 11 455
Email: [email protected]
Company Website: www.acetaialucenti.it
Visiting Hours: Saturday 09:00 – 17:00; Sunday 09:00 – 12:00
Reservation Required: YES
Additional Info: Acetaia Lucenti, operated by Federica Lucenti, offers a variety of balsamic vinegars. The company is committed to delivering an exceptional tasting experience, allowing visitors to discover the fascinating process behind the production of their vinegar.

Il Borgo del Balsamico
Address: Via chiesa di Albinea 25, Botteghe di Albinea (RE)
Contact Person: Cristina Crotti
Phone: 0522 59 81 75
Email: [email protected]
Company Website: www.ilborgodelbalsamico.it
Visiting Hours: Saturday and Sunday by appointment only
Reservation Required: YES
Additional Info: Il Borgo del Balsamico, led by Cristina Crotti, is a renowned producer of balsamic vinegar. Their tours provide insight into the traditional methods used in the production process, and their tasting experiences allow visitors to appreciate the unique flavors and quality of their products.

Lini 910
Address: Via Vecchia Canolo 7, Correggio (RE)
Contact Person: Alberto Lini
Phone: 0522 69 01 62
Email: [email protected] [email protected]
Company Website: www.lini910.it
Visiting Hours: Saturday and Sunday 9:00 – 12:00 14:00 – 18:00
Reservation Required: YES
Additional Info: Lini 910, run by Alberto Lini, produces excellent balsamic vinegar that has been aged using traditional methods. Each tour ends with a tasting session, enabling visitors to appreciate the depth and complexity of their products.

Medici Ermete e F.lli
Address: Strada per Sant’Ilario 68, Montecchio Emilia (RE). On Google Maps enter only Tenuta Medici Ermete, without an address
Contact Person: Alessandra Medici
Email: [email protected]
Company Website: www.medici.it
Visiting Hours: Saturday and Sunday 9:00-12:00 14:30-18:00
Reservation Required: YES
Additional Info: Medici Ermete e F.lli is a prestigious acetaia with a rich history of producing high-quality balsamic vinegar. Visitors can tour their facilities and experience firsthand the painstaking processes that result in their premium product.

Società Agricola Ferrarini
Address: Via Conte Re 13, 42020 Albinea (RE)
Contact Person: Mario Di Garbo
Phone: 335 57 79 703 – 347 35 49 497
Email: [email protected]
Company Website: http://www.ferrarini.com
Visiting Hours: Sunday 8:00 – 13:00
Reservation Required: Not obligatory, but preferable
Additional Info: Società Agricola Ferrarini, under the guidance of Mario Di Garbo, is renowned for its traditional balsamic vinegar. The company is committed to preserving the traditional methods used in the production of balsamic vinegar, ensuring the quality and taste of their products are unrivaled. The nearby “Società Agricola Ferrarini” cheese factory, located just a few hundred meters away at Via Fratelli Menozzi 29, 42020 Quattro Castella (RE), is worth a visit as well.

Immerse yourself in the charm of Reggio Emilia’s Acetaie Aperte and delve into the fascinating world of balsamic vinegar production. From the passion of the artisans to the rich aromas permeating the factories, this event promises an unforgettable gastronomic journey. So mark your calendars and prepare your senses for a unique Italian experience.

Lucca Guided Tour with Food Experience

Silvia is a reputable and licensed tour guide with years of extensive industry experience. As your premier tour guide for the Tuscany Region, she has a foreign language degree and speaks both Italian and English fluently. With more than 15 years if the tourism industry, she has organized countless tours of her hometown for tourists, visitors, and locals alike. From historic sites and architecture to the best in old town shops and jewelry venues, this amazing guide will truly show you the magic and mystique of Lucca. As a world renowned and popular tourist attraction, Lucca is blanketed with breathtaking scenery and picturesque landscapes at every turn. Explore the wonders of Lucca, which features medieval churches, art museums, Renaissance walls, and ancient palaces, that capture the true allure and essence of old Italy.

Lucca is one of the most charming towns in Tuscany – source


The Lucca Tour

As part of your guided tour, you will embrace the beauty of Lucca with its enchanting villages, parks, hamlets, and the resort town of Viareggio. The coastal region of Versilia is also a must see for those that love the ocean and stunning mountain views. After a day of touring, enjoy the hottest nightlife spots with world class cuisine, wine, and the perfect blend of traditional and contemporary music.

Lucca Wine and Fine Gourmet Tours

If you love to sample fine wines and delicious Italian delicacies and entrees, your guide will connect you to the finest restaurants and outdoor cafes in the region. Dazzle your taste buds with the best in Torta Derbi, Buccellato, Cioccolato, along with traditional olive oil and salami specialties. This is a must for fine gourmet connoisseurs and aficionados that want to sample and taste the best in Italian cuisine. While the aromas and scents will captive your soul, you will also love the historic churches, monuments, architecture, and burgeoning art scene that Lucca offers.

Lucca Gardens

The guide will also take you on a walking tour of the regionally renowned Botanical Garden. The Palazzo Pfanner garden and Guinigi tower are also situated within long and woody city walls that cannot be missed. The Lucca Gardens tour showcases some of the finest frescoes in the region that exemplify the historic traditions and culture of this fascinating city. From elegant floral arrangements to lavish shopping venues, Lucca welcomes you and your loved ones with open arms

Food Lovers Tour in Florence

I am German, 49 years old, deeply in love with Italy. I live in Florence for 30 years and I am an Art History major, with 24 years experience as guide and tour manager.

Florence does not only offers art, culture and architecture but as in any other Italian city it offers a vast array of foods and wines. This tour offers a possibly to explore gelato, espresso, chanti wine, and a visit to the central food market in the city. Not to be missed by any food lover!

Tour Guide: Juliane

I am German, 49 years old, deeply in love with Italy. I lived in Florence for 30 years and I am an Art History major, with 24 years experience as guide and tour manager.

Florence market food and wine tour – source

Customized private tour, not more than 8 participants.

Highlights of the tour: Central Food Market Hall of Florence, visit and tastings:
Olive Oil, Balsamic Vinegar, Truffles, Tuscan Specialities.
Walking tour along all the most important monuments: Duomo, Signoria Square, Ponte Vecchio. Stops for more tastings: gelato, lesson on Italian Coffee, Wine, Prosecco or Grappa, street food such as tripe and good Italian Panini.

Possibility to include the David of Michelangelo.

Duration: about 4 hrs

Meeting point: Pick up in your hotel, or at the Bell Tower of the Duomo.
Entrance fee for the Accademia Museum (David): 16,00 E. per person

Best Street food in Florence.

My trip to Florence, Italy was an adventure to remember. Among the sight-seeing, walking, shopping and general absorbing of this aesthetically pleasing city, I found some of the most delightful little street food vendors and places to get some of the best and most traditional foods Florence has to offer. To really take in and appreciate this Italian city for what it truly stands for, food wise, these were the best examples I could have tried. Known well for its consumption of wines, cold meats and cheese,
Florence is very well fed on flavoursome food and drinks. Eating here is an
absolute experience and they pride themselves on their many choices. Most
vendors will use the local produce meaning you get to taste the authenticity of Florence and Tuscan specialities.

It seemed just as I started to think of lunch, one of these beautiful little eateries would appear just as I needed them. Over all I found the Florence staff working at the venues to be really friendly and patient with my non-Italian lingo. Their English was wonderful and their accents understandable. I would recommend learning a little Italian before you
go as you can understand so much more when exploring their city and the food and wines Florence can offer.

I due fratellini in Florence.

Due Fratellini is a quaint and traditional little
sandwich and wine venue in the heart of Florence. If you are visiting Florence, I recommend you pop into this little treasure trove of fresh, mouth-watering, Tuscan food.


If you arrive here bang on lunch time like I did, then get in the que, the service is fact and the food is so worth the wait. It looked really daunting as I approached this hole-in-the-wall restaurant. There were at least 10 people outside the door waiting to be served. But I had a feeling it was going to be good because of the people eagerly waiting for their sandwiches and paninis.

With over 30 choices of filling for your Tuscan Bread sandwich or Panini, on any day of the week, it is hard to choose your combination of fresh cheese’s and cold meats and fish. The salad is as local as the Tuscan Ham with fennel seeds, all from small producers in Florence, you can guarantee it is as fresh as it possibly could be.

If you do get stuck with your sandwich filling, the family behind this traditional little street food vendor have put together a wonderful selection of suggestions from Green sauce to Tuscan Wild Boar Salami. The cheeses they have are a wondrous treat, so fresh and flavoursome. Pecrino cheese with Tuscan truffle for example was something I had never tried before my visit here.

The sandwiches are only 4euro so it is very affordable to eat here.

The gentlemen working behind the counter were very friendly and the food was amazing. People have heard a lot about this place and it has a great reputation so I would say a must see!

Their wine selection is extensive with a six foot deep wine rack holding hundreds of beautiful Chianti and Pinot Grigio, the rack spans the whole back wall of the counter up to the front door. The general trend here is to choose a sandwich or panini, then get yourself a lovely glass of Tuscan Wine to wash it down while accentuating the flavours of the Italian cheeses.

Panino Mondiale.

Panino Mondiale is a tiny little kiosk type, food vendor in
the Santa Maria Navella Train Station in Florence and offers some great street food. The name literally translates to World Sandwich.


The fillings available are plenty and their speciality is something called Lampredetto. This is a meat product which is served hot in your Tuscan Bread Roll, dusted with flour. It is lean and meaty and it comes from the
intestine of smaller cattle. This traditional Florence dish is not to be missed
and tastes great.

This is a good place to eat on the go with
the takeaway bags they provide and all at low street food prices.

The menu is impressive for such a small shop and I was pleased to see lots of children friendly options like burgers and sausages alongside their selection of dishes and sandwich fillings which are all bought fresh on a daily basis from the City Market.

L’antico trippaio.

L’antico Trippaio is a small food stall in the tiny unsuspecting location of the narrow historical streets in the city of Florence close to the Palazzo Vecchio. As a street food vendor, this place ticks all the boxes for a Tuscan Sandwich shop and give you an extensive menu of boiled meats and salsa verde aka green sauce. An elderly lady runs the little stall and
although not too friendly, she does know how to make you one of the best lampredetto smothered with a good serving of salsa verde and Tuscan cheese.


Rosticeria Giuliano.

Rosticceria Giuliano 3 this is beautiful and  traditional
Italian take away deli. The menu offers some home-made dishes and the produce is all local from Florence itself. The ingredients are fresh and full of flavour. I had some Tuscan Ham, peas and potatoes and it was beautiful. The staff are very welcoming and friendly. Roast chicken is always a reccomended to try with visiting an Italian rosticeria.

rosticeria giuliano

Their wine selection is huge but the staff are happy to help guide you if you get stuck. I was torn between the Chianti Colli Senesi DOCG and the Super Tuscans. They allowed me to try both and I settled with the Chianti.

The chef comes into the deli and makes sure you and enjoying his culinary delights. An all-round lovely little place to get a nice glass of Chianti and a good hot meal. The display window shows an array of meats and cheese as well as their home cooked dishes. It’s hard to walk past and I just couldn’t resist the temptation.

Streed food tour in Florence.

Street food vendors are a plenty in Florence and you will no doubt discover some little gems yourself whilst wandering the streets and markets of this traditional little city. Many a review online can be found to show there is much excitement around the taste bud tingling flavours and discoveries found here.

Enjoy the views and absorb the ambience of Florence, the street food and wine is the final link to your full on Florence experience.