Saba is made from grapes, primarily Trebbiano or Lambrusco varieties. The grape must, or juice, is slowly cooked down to about a third of its original volume, resulting in a syrup with the rich, sweet flavor of raisins and plums. (Saba is also known as mosto cotto – "cooked grape must" – or vin cotto – "cooked wine.")
Ancient Greeks and Romans used saba to sweeten desserts and drinks and to flavor meats. Here are a few modern-day recipes, though you can also simply drizzle the syrup on fruit, vegetables, ricotta, or anything you can think of!
• Baked Pears with Saba, from The Splendid Table
• Goat Cheese with Figs and Walnuts, from Suzanne Goin
• Raspberries with Saba Sabayon, from Bon Appétit
• Salmon With Figs, Saba and Watercress, from David Pasternak
(Image: Emily Ho)