One of the benefits of cider making [/winemaking] is the opportunity to produce high-quality, negligible cost and effort vinegar. The last batch of vinegar I made was apparently back in 2007, and I recall it being a painless process. Except for maybe the lingering smell. Now I have more space, so I can choose a more appropriate location for the smell than a laundry room…
You take cider or wine. Put it into a non-reactive container you don’t value highly as you may not want to use it for anything else afterwards [I used a very large jar this time, last time a large food grade pail]. Cover it [I used a small piece of fabric from pressing the cider, and a former broccoli elastic]. Forget about it for a few weeks. If all goes well, you start to get a slimy, hideous looking mat of goop atop it – the ‘mother’. Feed the mother periodically with more cider/wine. That’s pretty much it. If you fail and it goes moldy and nasty, give it another shot.
Not sure how long it will take for a natural acetobacter to invade, but I’ll let you know. I’m not in a hurry.
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