How to Make Red Wine Vinegar at Home

The task of how to make your own red wine vinegar at home is an easy one. Making red wine vinegar can be a rewarding experience and one that can develop into a tasteful hobby. The steps on how to make red wine vinegar involves patience and tender care. Like with wine, red wine vinegar is a virtue. Homemade vinegar has a much crisper taste that is better balanced than some of the store bought vinegars, which have a more acidic quality.

A red wine vinegar recipe consists of wine, water and a mother. Not your mother but a red wine vinegar mother. A vinegar mother is used to convert the wine into vinegar. Although another important ingredient is having an understanding mother or spouse who accepts your new found vinegar making talents, a vinegar mother is a colony of bacteria. This bacteria culture is an important part in the red wine vinegar making process.

To get started, you will need the following supplies along with the ingredients already mentioned. You will need all of these red wine vinegar ingredients:

  • 4 bottles of red wine
  • 1 jar of Mycoderma Aceti (Vinegar mother)
  • 1 gallon ceramic or glass crock or wooden barrel with spigot
  • Cheesecloth
  • Coffee strainer
  • 3 to 4 months of time

Begin to make red wine vinegar, which will soon be your delicious masterpiece, by pouring the vinegar mother and wine into the crock or barrel. Next cover the crock with the cheesecloth and let it sit. After three months, the wine will ferment and turn sour. The fermenting process is slow and therefore may take three to four months or so for the wine to go sour turning into vinegar.

You will notice that the vinegar will have a grayish film over it. This is because at this stage the vinegar is purely acetic acid and the veil covering the top of the liquid is the mother of vinegar. The mother may look nasty but it is an essential part of the process. While you still see the mother on the surface, add a glass of wine to the liquid every couple of weeks. Once the mother is no longer floating at the surface of the vinegar that means the vinegar is ready!

The mother will drop to the bottom of the crock or barrel and once there you can now strain the vinegar through the coffee filters. Use several layers of filters to strain the red wine vinegar and then remove any remaining particles. At this point you have the choice of consuming the vinegar at its current stage or you can continue to age it in wooden barrels for even up to two years. The longer the vinegar ages the more mellow a flavor it will have.