Before stepping into the world of vinegar, I thought fermented grape juice would become wine. Like me, many people today still don’t know that delicious raw grape vinegar is a possibility! Allow me to walk you through the process.
HOW IT WORKS
This method requires the use of an electric juicer. In this tutorial, I used my Champion.
When pressing grapes via an electric juicer, they ought to be seedless. Those with seeds impart a slightly bitter flavor to the ferment. They also tend to put out a frothy, foamy liquid that is difficult to work with.
Unlike the raisin making process, it’s ok to leave some of the tiny stems directly attached to grapes.
HOW TO MAKE GRAPE VINEGAR
- freshly harvested grapes
- cloth for straining
- fermenting container
Directions: taking hold of grape stem at the top. Run fingers down through the clusters. Smalls stems will go with grapes. That’s fine! Once you have a bowl full, place a wide funnel on top of juicer’s mouth, like this:
Grapes can be tricky to stuff in such a tiny hole and with this method you can drop handfuls down the hatch!
Juice grapes, emptying the catch container as needed, until the grapes are gone.
Strain the liquid through a cloth. There will be lots of “residual” pulp coagulating in the liquid. Once strained, pour into a fermenting container.
Cover the mouth with a cloth or paper towel, securing with a rubber band or canning ring. Keep those fruit flies out! Let sit in temperatures no lower than 60F/15C and no higher than 80F/26C for at least 2 months.
You’ll be able to watch the grape juice move through fermenting phases!
Tiny bubbles on the sides of the jar indicate it has moved into it’s first part of fermentation: the alcohol stage.
If you check 10-14 days later, those bubbles will disappear and within a couple weeks it will begin to smell a wee bit “sour” as vinegar ought. It will continually grow stronger until full transformation has taken place.
When finished, vinegar can be transferred to a jug or bottle for ease of use.
Use in homemade salad dressings or in cold drinks. Unless your seedless grapes have a very high sugar content, your vinegar will be far milder in flavor and tang than apple cider vinegar. But it’s still delicious!