When I first began making my own vinegar, I stuck to well-known options. Over time, I become quite good at making red raspberry and apple cider vinegar. But grapes? I thought raw grape juice would only ferment into wine! It was several years later when I finally discovered the truth and learned how to make grape vinegar.
Equipment You’ll Need
In this tutorial, I use an electric Champion juicer and it’s accessories to extract the grape’s sweet liquid. You can check out the make and model here (affiliate link).
Let’s Talk About Grapes
When it comes to making raw vinegar, you can use just about any grape variety. Fully-ripe grapes will yield the richest flavor. Those with high sugar content will make the strongest vinegar.
Seedless grapes work best when extracting with an electric juicer. Seeds cause extreme foaming that is difficult to work with and may also impart a bitter flavor to your vinegar.
Ready to learn how to make grape vinegar? Here’s how you go about it all!
Preparing the Grapes
Your grapes should be freshly picked. Rinse the clusters, then proceed to remove the oval fruit from their stems. And if you miss a few? The Champion juicer won’t notice a bit of extra fiber!
Juicing the Grapes
Set up the juicer, complete with catch containers and the mouth funnel. Drop grapes into the funnel by the handful. Gently force them down with the plunge.
Continue juicing grapes, emptying the catch container as need, until the grapes are gone.
Straining and Storing the Liquid
Anytime you juice grapes there will be lots of pulp in the liquid. Strain it through a cloth once or even twice, then pour the raw grape juice into a fermenting container.
I prefer to use a glass canning jar!
Cover the mouth with a cloth or paper towel, then secure it with a rubber band or canning ring.
Your juice should be left to ferment between temperatures 60F (15C) and 80F (26C). The fermenting process will take 2-4 months.
Watch the Fermenting Phases
You’ll be able to watch the juice move through fermenting phases.
Very soon, tiny bubbles will appear on the sides of the glass jar. They can also be seen on the surface of the liquid. This is the first stage of fermentation. Your juice is converting to alcohol.
Check the ferment 10-14 days later and the bubbles will be gone. After several weeks have passed, it will begin to smell a wee bit “sour” as vinegar should. This smell will grow stronger as the conversion to vinegar takes place.
When finished, vinegar can be transferred to a jug or bottle for ease of use.
That’s all it takes! Learning how to make grape vinegar is simple, easy and delicious!