This is the main vinegar on the continent of Europe, and is made from low alcohol wines (7-9%) or from those with too high volatile acidity. Any wines that have too high an alcohol content must be diluted; otherwise, the Acetobacter will be inhibited. Too high a sulphur dioxide level or sediment level will also be a problem. When produced on a small scale, the wine is mixed in small wooden barrels with mother vinegar. The barrel must contain air so it is not filled completely. The process halts naturally when the acetic acid content reaches 7-8% w/v. The product will contain elevated levels of acetaldehyde and ethyl acetate when compared with the parent wine. Some of the vinegar will now be drawn off for use and replaced with fresh wine. Production on a larger scale is subject to EU regulations, with the stipulation that the total acid developed must be greater than 6% w/v and the maximum surviving ethanol being less than 1.5% v/v.
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