Iio Jozo Rice Wine Vinegar

Iio Jozo Rice Wine Vinegar

Exceptionally fruity.

Most rice vinegars are one-note extremes: either very mild and flat, or excessively acidic and overwhelming. This rice vinegar from Japan-based Iio Jozo is unlike any I've ever tried before. 

Quick sake lesson: sake is an alcoholic beverage made from fermented rice. Before the rice is fermented, it’s polished so that the fats and proteins in the outer layers of the kernel are milled away, leaving the cleaner, more delicate flavors of the starchy core. The degree of polish ranges from 30% to 50% and is directly related to the grade: the more rice is milled away, the higher the quality grade of sake. When more of the rice has been polished off, the grains are smaller, meaning even more rice is required to produce the same amount of sake compared to a lower quality grade. 

Most vinegar companies buy pre-made sake. For their premium rice vinegar, the team at Kyoto-based Iio Jozo uses locally sourced rice to brew the highest quality grade sake which has an aromatic, refined taste. After they ferment their sake into vinegar, it’s aged for 8 months to round out any sharp, harsh notes. Overall, each batch takes about a year from start to finish.

All of these steps add up to an exceptionally fruity and complex vinegar. Use it for sushi or Japanese-inspired salad dressings, but don't stop there. It's an excellent option to swap in whenever you'd normally use a white wine vinegar. 

"Iio Jozo contains less acetic acid than other rice vinegar and more of milder acids. The refinement, the depth expand a cook’s sense of what vinegar is and the possibilities for using it."
Ed Behr, The Art of Eating

Iio Jozo Rice Wine Vinegar

V-IJR 500 ml
Current Price $55
Ships for flat rate
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