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Making Vinegar


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Hmmm... russ makes a good point. That clear jar may be intended for serving lemonade, iced tea, or agua frescas. In that case, the sealant may not be suitable for long term exposure to acetic acid.

Is there also a reason that vinegar jars are traditionally made of pottery? I am wondering if exposure to light has anything to do with it.

I did examine the spigot and seemed like it could hold up to the acid..but time will tell. This is an experiment after all! :biggrin:

As far as light goes, I'm keeping the jar in a closed/dark pantry so I wasn't so concerned about light. But I think it would be a consideration.

I think pottery would be my first choice...but this is what I could find. After all pottery is what used for all sorts of "pickle-ing", so I bet pottery should be the jar of choice.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Ok, so I got myself a sun tea jar ($3.88) and currently the lump of jelled off white sludge I came to know as a vinegar mother is resting in there along with a bottle’s worth (make that a bottle minus one glass) of Merlot ($5 Australian Black Swan). I have the thing covered with a cheese cloth held in place with a rubber band.

This got me to thinking though, if it takes 4-6 months to have vinegar, doesn’t that mean I need to stop adding fresh wine to the batch 4-6 months from when I want to have vinegar? I mean I cannot keep adding wine to the jar all the way through October and expect to have wine by November. Right? Or am I just thinking too hard?

Thanks for everyone’s help in this very interesting thread

Elie

E. Nassar
Houston, TX

My Blog
contact: enassar(AT)gmail(DOT)com

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Ok, so I got myself a sun tea jar ($3.88) and currently the lump of jelled off white sludge I came to know as a vinegar mother is resting in there along with a bottle’s worth (make that a bottle minus one glass) of Merlot ($5 Australian Black Swan). I have the thing covered with a cheese cloth held in place with a rubber band.

This got me to thinking though, if it takes 4-6 months to have vinegar, doesn’t that mean I need to stop adding fresh wine to the batch 4-6 months from when I want to have vinegar? I mean I cannot keep adding wine to the jar all the way through October and expect to have wine by November. Right? Or am I just thinking too hard?

Thanks for everyone’s help in this very interesting thread

Elie

No answer about this so far, so I want to bring it back up to the top of the list.

Elie

E. Nassar
Houston, TX

My Blog
contact: enassar(AT)gmail(DOT)com

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When the mother has converted all the alcohol to vinegar,and that time can vary,

remove about 3/4 and bottle it for consumption.Replace with more wine.

You need not add wine at various times for the first batch.

A crock with a spigot really is ideal for long term vinegar making,and the glass

container should really be covered up not to allow any light.

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When the mother has converted all the alcohol to vinegar,and that time can vary,

remove about 3/4 and bottle it for consumption.Replace with more wine.

You need not add wine at various times for the first batch.

A crock with a spigot really is ideal for long term vinegar making,and the glass

container should really be covered up not to allow any light.

Thanks for the reply. I really appreciate the tip about covering up the glass. I will make sure to do this as soon as I get home.

Elie

E. Nassar
Houston, TX

My Blog
contact: enassar(AT)gmail(DOT)com

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sorry, didn't see this earlier. but yeah, what he said. unfortunatley, it is one of those frustrating timing things, like aging wine: at first things can't go fast enough, then once it gets going, you kind of wish it would slow down.

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  • 1 month later...

Ok, it’s been almost 2 months now and I am not sure if the mother is dead or still active. How can I tell? It just seems to be at the bottom of the jar and does not look like it is spreading/growing.

Elie

E. Nassar
Houston, TX

My Blog
contact: enassar(AT)gmail(DOT)com

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I was wondering how other people were doing....

I had a most spectacular mold growth, it had height, depth, dimension, valleys, weight and substance. I decided it was a mold and not a mother. (seriously....it was impressive and the camera was nowhere to be found! :wacko: )

I'm trying the pasta thing one more time.......

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I was wondering how other people were doing....

I had a most spectacular mold growth, it had height, depth, dimension, valleys, weight and substance. I decided it was a mold and not a mother. (seriously....it was impressive and the camera was nowhere to be found!  :wacko: )

I'm trying the pasta thing one more time.......

:laugh::laugh::laugh: Keep us updated

E. Nassar
Houston, TX

My Blog
contact: enassar(AT)gmail(DOT)com

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  • 4 weeks later...

I just opened a bottle of rioja that wasn't as bright as the last bottle I'd opened. In fact I couldn't drink it anymore after the second glass. Instead of freezing it for some future cyrogenic use, I want to make vinegar with it. I've recently searched the net for recipes but have not found one that doesn't require me to purchase something.

I was told by the old guy at the wine makers shop in Detroit that all I have to do is mix equal parts wine and vinegar and, if the wine doesn't need diluting, simply wait for three weeks for the mother to grow and then I'll have vinegar for life if I keep it fed. I tried this a month ago with some big jug wine that had gone bad. It didn't turn to vinegar and stunk up the kitchen.

Anyone make there own or have a simple recipe?

Bode

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You need a vinegar "mother". You can find them at your local winemaking and homebrewing supply store. Runs about 5bucks for either a red or a white mother. You mentioned a winemaker's store so he should have it. Sounds like he was talking about adding a homemade vinegar to your wine also-all commercial stuff is pasteurized, killing anything that may be in it. You can order online from various suppliers too but shipping's gonna run you more than the product probably.

Let me know if you want some online suppliers but i'd hit the yellow pages.

hth, danny

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What was wrong with the wine? If it was flawed in some way -- particularly afflicted with TCA, brettanomyces, or disulfides -- you aren't going to like the vinegar either. IF it was just oxidized, you are probably okay.

We cannot employ the mind to advantage when we are filled with excessive food and drink - Cicero

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Thanks for the replies. I didn't think about commercial vinegar being pasteurized. The guy at the wine store may have been talking about adding vinegar he'd already made. This makes sense and would explain why my first batch didn't grow. There are several sources for mother in the area but I like the idea of being self-sufficient or at least trying to be at first. Growing up with parents who left opened bottles of wine in the liquor cabinet for months (there are bottles of liquor almost as old as I am still in there, I know there are spices around given to them as wedding presents) and thinking it tasted a lot like vinegar when I snuck some had me thinking I could replicate it pretty easily.

The bottle I opened yesterday was simply oxidized I think. It tasted as if I'd opened it last week. I could drink it, I just didn't enjoy it very much even after two glasses. It is a bottle I've usually like. I also don't know enough to really determine if there are other problems with it.

Bode

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A while ago I more or less was able to make vinegar from wine by simply soaking bread in the wine, leaving it for awhile and straining. I went to make it again, having most of a bottle of sparkling wine, but I couldn't find the recipe! No amount of googling was able to find what I was looking for. (I didn't want to buy a mother either). I Hope someone on egullet knows something about starting it with bread...

(I too have heard that unpasteurized vinegar is a good enough starter for wine... )

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What was wrong with the wine?  If it was flawed in some way -- particularly afflicted with TCA, brettanomyces, or disulfides -- you aren't going to like the vinegar either.  IF it was just oxidized, you are probably okay.

Apparently TCA isn't an issue in vinegar - rather than test this myself I've been returning the corked wines I open to where they were purchased. One of these days I'll open an older bottle that is corked and I'll see if that's the case, but I've been fairly lucky in that regard recently.

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  • 1 month later...
  • 2 months later...

The chef at one of the places I work makes his own red wine vinegar, but he does it at home and won't share the art. Anybody on here have experience with it? I'd love to make my own.

The other place I work has white balsamic, any recipes for that one? :blink:

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You need to purchase a vinegar Mother, in NJ you can get it at Corrados ( Clifton NJ) wine making supply store so perhaps somewhere else that has those supplies or Google Vinegar Mother.

it lookes like slime in a jar :wacko:

white balsamic shouldnt exsist....it turns brown by being aged in different types of wooden barrels over the course of min 12 yrs....but fake Balsamic is a whole other story line

The great thing about barbeque is that when you get hungry 3 hours later....you can lick your fingers

Maxine

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Paul Bertolli also has a nice detailed description on making wine vinegar in "Chez Panisse Cooking".

Also some other info on egullet here

Edited by ludja (log)

"Under the dusty almond trees, ... stalls were set up which sold banana liquor, rolls, blood puddings, chopped fried meat, meat pies, sausage, yucca breads, crullers, buns, corn breads, puff pastes, longanizas, tripes, coconut nougats, rum toddies, along with all sorts of trifles, gewgaws, trinkets, and knickknacks, and cockfights and lottery tickets."

-- Gabriel Garcia Marquez, 1962 "Big Mama's Funeral"

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The Art of Eating (issue 68) has a nice piece about making your own red wine vinegar. It's written by Ed Behr, so it's very thorough, and he's honest about the fact that sometimes it doesn't work. Curiously, he says you don't actually need to acquire a mother, though he points out that the wine->vinegar reaction might take a while (months) if you don't have one. He also talks about barrel aging.

The article's entitled "The Best Red Wine Vinegar You'll Taste is the One You Make Yourself" or something like that.

I'm thinking of trying it.

Derrick Schneider

My blog: http://www.obsessionwithfood.com

You have to eat. You might as well enjoy it!

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