Making Sherry Vinegar from ACV mother

I made organic ACV and placed in bottles 3/2/2023. I bought some dry Sherry and trying to make vinegar with the ACV mother.

patty Lukacs


Lori T. May 2, 2023
The vinegar mother doesn't particularly care what alcohol she's in, but the ABV (alcohol by volume) does need to be between 6 and 9%. Your sherry will be somewhere between 15 and 22%, so you need to dilute it with unchlorinated water to get to that. I have made it in the past, using 2 cups of sherry diluted in 4 cups of water. Swish your mother around inside the container you want to use for the process, so that all the surfaces get coated and wet. Then add in the diluted sherry, cover with your cloth, and set it aside to do what mother does. How long it takes is up to mother, the temperature, the alignment of the stars and planets, etc- you know how that goes since you made ACV. Mine usually takes about 3-4 months, at the fastest. After that you can retrieve the mother to make some other sort of vinegar as you like. Mothers from red wine will be dark dusky red, those in white wine or apple cider are paler, and the one in sherry will get a sort of tan brown as a rule- but it won't change the color of your next batch, so don't worry what color mother is.
mafalda June 5, 2023
My son gave me a wooden barrel from and it's for aging drinks, but instead I'm curious to make vinegar in it, do you think it would work?
Lori T. June 5, 2023
It can, but there are a few "quid pro quos" so to speak. A barrel for making vinegar has a second opening, to allow for some air to enter because fermentation is an oxidation process. Mother has to breathe, you know? It also helps move the process along a little if you stir things up every so often- unlike your own mom, MOV doesn't mind that. A charred barrel meant to age a spirit will also impart some of that char flavor to your vinegar, so that's something to think about too. It might work okay for a red wine vinegar, but it could be rough for a delicate white or sherry type. BUT once your vinegar is made, that barrel could be a great place to store a large batch- because it restricts oxygen, which helps keep the finished vinegar in good shape for longer. If you decide to use it for vinegar, be sure you clean it well with hot non-chlorinated water first, to get it clean of all char dust and whatever- and to make sure it's water tight. And of course, label that it's held vinegar. You would not ever want to put a spirit or wine in that barrel ever again. Well, not unless you wanted vinegar or a sour beer/spirit.
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