Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Mom's Up

About 6 weeks ago, Karen Vollmecke gave me two quarts of raspberries to fool around with. Her farm overproduces raspberries, and she needs to develop ways to turn as many of them as possible into products that people can use. So, since I'd recently told her that I'd been toying with making vinegar from wine dregs and like liquids, she asked me if I wouldn't mind taking some berries and trying to turn them into raspberry vinegar.

I took he up on her offer and well, I don't want to make no mountains out of molehills [Not] but I tried it and it worked brilliantly. The vinegar tastes like raspberries, has a nice mouthfeel (in no small part due to the fact that I pumped up the fructose content with raisins prior to primary fermentation) and I think looks pretty good (I racked it off very carefully). The slideshow below shows a few snapshots of the vinegar as it was happening and as it appears now.

The shots that show the vinegar in jar I think are especially cool because of the gully layer of acetobacilli (mother of vnegar) on the top. Don't you think?


Tags said...

If Karen's looking for a way to use high-quality raspberries, she need look no further than Le Petit Mitron in Narberth. Patrick and Isabelle Rurange's raspberry chibouste is a close second to breathing for use of air.

But then again, not all of us have a sweet tooth ;-)

fiat lux said...


tyronebcookin said...

Love the slide shows bob! What do you think the acid content on it is? Closer to rice wine vin or regular white?

Bob del Grosso said...

It's probably about as acidic as white vinegar. I can't tell for sure right now because my pH meter needs calibration and I don't have any distilled water for tuning it up. But it's probably around pH2.

The Foodist said...

this is the kind of stuff I wish theyd spend more time showing us the "how to" here at school.

Any good reading material one could be pointed toward for this sort of thing Bob?

redman said...


was your mother culture bought or did it start on it's own?

got a recommendation for inexspensive ph tester? I saw a hot tub tester kit at Home Depot for like $15, seemed like more than I want

cheap litmus paper at pet shop maybe?

Bob del Grosso said...

I can't recommend anything to read but that don't mean there isn't. I winged it. I just assumed that since vinegar is formed when acteobacteria consumed alcohol I'd ferment some alcohol, wait till that stage was over, then trust that the acetobacteria would kick in.

The hardest part was being patient and racking off. I so wanted to squeeze all the liquid out of the must (bad idea) and it bugged me to have to discard the goop that came out in the filter cloth.
One thing I learned is that it's got to be very costly top make good vinegar, especially if you start with high quality fruit that could be used to make good wine.


pH paper is fine, but I'm guessing that if you are going to buy paper that can nail pH at relatively fine increments (say pH 7, 6.5, 6, 5.5 and so on) you may end up paying more than 15 dollars. Dunno, though, Google it!

I added a bit of old vinegar that I'd made a while ago. But frankly, this mother looks so different from the one that was produced in that batch that I think it's mostly a new population. What I mean to say is that if you want to do the same thing you probably don't need to add mother. Just use fruit that is grown without pesticide or fungicide and it should go off on it's own.

Ur nutz