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Vinegar mother culture for starting up wine vinegar, apple vinegar, etc.
Content: 100 ml
Vinegar can only be produced out of alcoholic beverages such as cider, wine or fruit wines. Vinegar is formed by acetic bacteria out of the alcohol. The wines need to be light or slightly acetic and not too high in alcohol content (rather not higher than 8 to 10 ABV, eventually thin down). As sulphite weakens the acetic bacteria and thus slowing down their work we recommend not to use wines which are strongly sulphurated. The wines have to be dry, as acetic bacteria transform the residual sugars into unwanted side products.
To obtain a high quality vinegar we advise to pasteurise the wine by keeping it at a temperature of 60°C for about 10 minutes. This to kill unwanted micro-organisms. At a higher temperature the alcohol would evaporate.
Cool down the wine to 30°C after pasteurisation before adding the vinegar culture. Acetic bacteria thrive well in warmth and work best at a temperature of 30°C. higher temperatures will kill them and at lower temperatures they become inactive
The preparation of vinegar happens in different steps.
Pour the contents of the bottle with this culture (eventually half the bottle) into ½ litre of pasteurised wine at a temperature of 30°C and put this into a 1 litre bottle. Acetic bacteria are anaerobic (they cannot survive without air) and need oxygen also to transform ethyl alcohol into acetic acid (most important ingredient of vinegar). For that reason the recipients must only be filled to half their contents. Close the bottle with a wad of cotton wool, keep it at 30°C and shake regularly (every day) to obtain good oxygenation. To do this change the cotton wool by a sterile lid. After 8 to 10 days this first culture is ready to produce more vinegar. Pour this culture into 2 litres of wine at 30°C and work following the same previous steps. After again 8 to 10 days this second culture can be add to 5 litres of wine and so on until the total amount of wine is being used.
After approximately 2 months the vinegar begins to clear up and the acetic fermentation is over.
Just filtrate your vinegar, put it into sterile bottles and store at a cool place.
Don’t ever produce your vinegar at the same place where wine is fermenting.
For vinegar production you can use wines which already are affected by acetic bacteria. But using heavily infected wines the possibility of formation of additional infections is higher. Thus this can be very harmful for the taste and odour of your vinegar.
You can never obtain a fine product by starting up with a bad product.
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