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Old 09-16-2012, 01:31 PM   #1
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Default Vinegar

I know this isn't really the place since the wine should already be done to make vinegar and this site is mostly about sugar to ethanol conversion not ethanol to acetic acid but I figured with fermentation enthusiastis being abundant on here some of you must want discuss vinegar making. I think there should be a vinegar forum alongside the cheesemaking and the sausage curing forums.

Decided to start making vinegar from my leftover red wine. Why I had been dumping it all this time baffels me. Just poured half a bottle of cheap sweet red into a wide glass bowl. Hoping to get a mother started soon. If it works out I want to brew two batches of english mild, one for drinking and one for making malt vinegar.

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Old 09-16-2012, 02:55 PM   #2
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I've been looking around and almost all grocery stores here have at least 1 brand of unpasteurized vinegar with mother. I picked up a bottle of red wine vinegar with mother for $2 but I haven't used it yet. One sure way of making vinegar is what you're doing - exposing a large surface area of wine to the air. I have a carboy of mead that I neglected. It's not topped off and I let the airlock dry out. It's on its way to vinegar and it's actually tasting really good.

I'm all for a vinegar forum.

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Old 09-16-2012, 05:20 PM   #3
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Gahhhh keep your vinegar forum away from my wine forum. I don't want it to get contaminated!

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Old 09-17-2012, 01:49 AM   #4
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HAHAHAHA fear my A. Xylinum

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Old 09-17-2012, 03:54 AM   #5
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it may turn to vinegar but it will take awhile, usually 3-4 months. i would get a mother it will be way faster

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Old 09-18-2012, 12:21 AM   #6
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I've made malt vinegar, cider vinegar, and wine vinegar.

They take longer than you'd expect, and I added a mother to them. Even with adding the mother, it took like 10 months for the wine vinegar to be finished.

For wine vinegar, you have to add some water and lower the alcohol level because the high alcohol level retards the process.

For cider vinegar (from hard cider) or malt vinegar (from beer), you can just add the mother, cover with cheesecloth and let it go.

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Old 09-18-2012, 05:00 PM   #7
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Honda88: just using the cheap sweet red to grow a mother. If it doesn't work out I will buy one.

That seems to be the message I am getting from research too Yooper. I don't know how accurate it is as of yet but a rule of thumb I read was in low concentrations (6% abv or less) a mother will convert about 1% ethanol to acetic acid a week. Since there is no reason I can think of to have a 12% acidity vinegar (wayyyy too harsh) dilution is necessary.

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Old 09-20-2012, 02:59 AM   #8
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For those who are making vinegar just make sure to keep your vinegar away from other fermentation...acetobacter aceti loves to cross contaminate just by way of ventilation.
Also, if hoping to form a natural mother from wine alone definitely dilute as noted, but also use a dry or almost dry wine. Acetobacter does not like presence of sugar, so the drier the better.
A mother will not form without the presence of acetobacter, either by innoculating with some apple cider vinegar with mother, or other mother-source or putting wine in a dark milk jug and hang from a tree outside and hope that vinegar flies visit.
It took almost 8 weeks for my mother to form when I used ACV with mother to innoculate my watered dry red. I left it in a warm, dark, draft free spot in my office and fed it diluted dry wine, carefully with a turkey baster so not to sink the developing skin of the morher, when the fluid levels dropped.

I have made red, white, apple and malt vinegars. Have even made fruit and herb infused vinegars that I bottled for gift giving. I never buy vinegar, even use my white wine vinegar or ACV when making pickles.

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Old 01-20-2014, 06:09 AM   #9
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Sorry to Necro this thread but my question is related and I'm hoping to get Yooper's attention without resorting to a PM

I let a bucket of plums topped with water ferment out with the wild yeast on the skins (hoping to make a German style schnapps... Shhh no distillation talk here!). I transferred it off the pits and skins into a new vessel. I forgot about it for a few (10-12) months and it sat in my hot garage over the summer.

I just checked on it today. I have 6 gallons of the tastiest plum vinegar ever. Yup, 6 gallons. Must have gotten some fruit flies or something.

It's really good. Looking to bottle it for my own use and to give as gifts.

What do I do? Do I need to carefully rack to avoid oxygenation and sediment? Just pour through a filter? Can I just reuse old wine bottles and hand shove old corks or do I need to get a corker and use new corks? I have no idea how to handle the vinegar from here.

I'm assuming I shouldn't use the fermenter for anything else or can I bleach bomb, PBW soak, and star San soak my way out of the acetobacter zone? If I rack, should I scrap my hoses and auto siphon?

I guess I have a good mother going now too. How to get the old girl out without breaking her up or does it matter?

Thanks in advance for any vinegar insight anyone can give.

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