Long term apple cider vinegar-- is mine ok?

Mead, wine, beer, and any other form of alcoholic beverages, as well as vinegar.

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Long term apple cider vinegar-- is mine ok?

Postby Brrrandy on Sun Jun 01, 2014 4:21 pm

I'm making ACV for the first time. I started it last fall around November, with the scraps from my cider pressing.

Everything seemed to go fine and normal, but the cider wasn't strong enough for my taste so I bottled some but left the rest of the five gallons to keep going. The mother was thick, and had several layers. When I took it off to bottle some, the bottom layers were very fragile and mushy and crumbled apart into the rest of the ACV. I wasn't sure if this was normal, but I was in a rush to go on a two month trip so I just put the mother back on top and hoped for the best.

I'm back now and hoping to bottle the rest. A new layer of mother formed on top and everything smells and looks fine, but when I take off the top layer, inside the ACV is a ton of mushy remnants of the previous mother layers, making the remaining ACV almost the consistency of a very runny applesauce. Is this normal? Should I just filter it through cheesecloth and bottle it?

I seem to remember reading something about mother layers sinking as the sugar is eaten, and new mothers forming, and that this is normal if you leave it for months to age... can't find it again though!
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Re: Long term apple cider vinegar-- is mine ok?

Postby WWFSM on Wed Jun 11, 2014 10:22 am

I haven't made this myself yet, so I'm going on what I've read and lore from people old enough to remember vinegar being made at home in their youth.

It sounds like a lot of dead yeast which would be dark and mushy and fall apart easily, either suspended or sinking to the bottom. I've seen something like this for other sour brews like kombucha, which is usually from an excess of yeast and not enough bacteria. Maybe too warm or too much sugar, or aliens... one can not always know the reason why ferments do what they do.

What they use to do was to strain it off and then bottle the vin, though more mothers (use to be refer to both the dead yeast stuff and the actual live mother/scoby) will probably form while the vin is stored, they just strain them off too.

Personally, if it was mine and it smelt good, I would decant off a small amount and taste it. Wait a 24 hours and see if I get sick, if not, then strain it, bottle it and use it. But that's me. You have to make your own decision and trust your own senses.

Let us know what you decide.
Doing my best to be the change I want to see in the world, one meal at a time.
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Currently Culturing
Kombucha, perry, cider, wine (red and white), mead(s), miso, sourdough, & seasonal veg my garden gives me
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Re: Long term apple cider vinegar-- is mine ok?

Postby Seashelly7 on Mon Jul 07, 2014 4:19 pm

I also have a crumbly looking mother at the bottom of my ACV, and will take the advice given regarding that unless, based on the uploaded pic, you have different advice.

However, in my long-term ACV, ther is a white film on the bottle that I am worried about. Any idea?
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Re: Long term apple cider vinegar-- is mine ok?

Postby RogerL on Tue Feb 05, 2019 12:34 pm

Seashelly7 wrote:I also have a crumbly looking mother at the bottom of my ACV, and will take the advice given regarding that unless, based on the uploaded pic, you have different advice.

However, in my long-term ACV, ther is a white film on the bottle that I am worried about. Any idea?


It appears that you have too much head space. The culture will continue to grow while sealed in that bottle. The white material is probably mother with a bit of evaporation involved. Long term fermentation/storage in this manner will see a loss of acetic acid (vinegar) as the air supply will allow the culture to continue to the over oxidation phase = "water"
Roger (Mr. Vinegar) Google Mr. Vinegar.
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