Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > General Topics >
Aug 11, 2006 10:47 PM

Unidentified floating objects in vinegar

My bottle of Spectrum organic red wine vinegar (about four months old) has become cloudy (I've seen this before). However, what I haven't seen before are the thin, white-ish 1-1/2 inch square "rafts" that are floating in the vinegar. Does anyone have any idea what this could be?

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. i have seen that before, i just assumed it was some sort of by product of fermintation

    1. Sounds like you've got a "mother" developing. Interestingly, my Spectrum red wine vinegar did the same thing.

      The mother won't harm or compromise your vinegar in the least. But if you let the mother develop into a floating mass you can decant the vinegar into another container, extract the mother and use it to make your own vinegar.

      1. Interesting -- what do you do with the "mother" to make more vinegar?

        2 Replies
        1. re: pikawicca

          Put the "mother" in a clean jar. Add leftover wine from your meals and pretty soon you'll have wine vinegar developing. I have a jar beside my kitchen sink and religiously add the last inch from my glass. Let it age for a bit and enjoy!

          1. re: Sherri

            Lucky you. Yes make your own vinegar!

          1. The "mother" is composed of a mass of cellulose. While it is actively "fermenting" the liquid into vinegar it will float in the liquid. Once the liquid has turned into 100% vinegar (also referred to as 100 grain), the mother with rest at the bottom of the liquid. She is still "alive," just dormant, and can be used to ferment other liquid.