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Red wine vinegar

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rescuer | 21:20 Sun 16th Apr 2006 | Food & Drink
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My red wine vinegar has been in the cupboard for some time and there is now material in the bottom of the bottle.


Is it OK to use? Should I strain it?

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Hi rescuer - vinegar will actually last for ages, but once opened, there will be a bit of further oxidation so after a long time the taste of a vinegar will alter compared to a new bottle. Extract from the Vinegar pages:


How Long Does Vinegar Last?
The Vinegar Institute conducted studies to find out and confirmed that vinegar�s shelf life is almost indefinite. Because of its acid nature, vinegar is self-preserving and does not need refrigeration. White distilled vinegar will remain virtually unchanged over an extended period of time. And, while some changes can be observed in other types of vinegars, such as color changes or the development of a haze or sediment, this is only an aesthetic change. The product can still be used and enjoyed with confidence.



See the site at: http://www.versatilevinegar.org/index.html


To get rid of the sediment just stretch some muslin over the mouth of a funnel and strain off the bits.

Question Author

Thanks nickmo for a speedy, first-class, interesting reply.


The vinegar site will be very useful. Mind you it gave the tip of adding a drop of vinegar to almost empty salad cream bottles -- this thrifty north country lad has donen that for a long time. And also with sauce and tomato ketchup bottles!

Because of its longetivity, vinegar is one of the food products exempt from the need for a 'Best Before' or 'Sell By' date marking. See the later 'Sea Salt' question.


Hi rescuer - glad to help.


In the vinegar site, the suggestion for the naked eggs is a bit weird and not sure the point of that one - other than saying youv'e done it....


Quite right re. the clearing a bottle trick though!

Please check your "sediment" carefully - I once found an old bottle at the back of the cupboard which turned out to have a thin layer of pickled baby flies in....
Question Author

Oh dear ann_h. I'll check that out. What do pickled flies taste like?


I'm not a vegetarian so it won't matter if I happen to have eaten some already!

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