essentia’s history is part serendipity, part design. it begins in the 1980s when rozendal owner kurt ammann was still making wine – and enjoying success with his acclaimed bordeaux blends. one fortuitous year, kurt discovered that his 1988 vintage contained slightly too much volatile acidity, and this ‘flaw’ proved a happy accident – providing the perfect opportunity to venture into vinegar making. the inaugural 2000 litres of leavened wine was left to mature in small oak barrels. intent on pursuing the highest quality, kurt reserved a small quantity for extra maturation, and over two decades later, his children discovered the result to be an exceptional yield of the finest vinegar.