How to store vinegar properly so that it does not spoil for a long time

Ihor Romanko

Where to store vinegar to prevent it from spoiling

Vinegar, derived from the French term "vin aigre", meaning "sour wine", has an interesting history. Legend has it that it was accidentally discovered when wine, forgotten in a vault, not only turned sour but also turned into vinegar. Despite the name and the legend, vinegar can be made from more than just grape-based products.

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Basically, vinegar is a mixture of acetic acid and water, which is produced in a two-stage fermentation process. In the first stage, yeast interacts with sugar or starch found in fruits such as grapes, or with whole grains, rice, etc. This creates ethanol, or alcohol. The ethanol then interacts with oxygen and acetic acid bacteria, which causes a second stage of fermentation that can last several weeks or even months, and vinegar is produced. Interestingly, some types of vinegar, such as balsamic vinegar, can ferment for up to 12 years.

Depending on the base used to make the vinegar, it can have different levels of acidity and a distinctive taste that depends on the base used, and can even be slightly sweet.

Vinegar bottles often carry a percentage on them that indicates its strength. Simply put, the higher the percentage, the more intense and sour the taste. Thus, the most acidic of all vinegars is distilled white vinegar with a strength of 9%. Knowing the percentage of vinegar will also help you choose the right type for a particular dish and dose it appropriately.

When it comes to storing vinegar, it is recommended to keep it in a dark, cool place, away from heat sources and direct sunlight. It is also important to always close the bottle well. Over time, sediment may form at the bottom, but this does not mean that the vinegar is bad. Just strain it and continue using it until the expiry date.

Earlier, we wrote about how long you can store coffee in an open container and how to do it properly.

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