Vinegar is ubiquitous in the kitchen. It's an ingredient used in cooking as well as baking. Vinegar is an essential part of making salad dressings, a key flavor in a marinade, and can transform milk into a buttermilk substitute. However, beyond cooking, distilled white vinegar can be used for many of the same household chores. Once opened, use vinegar up within six months. Adding a splash of something acidic, like vinegar, tends to brighten the flavors of almost any dish. Like wine, vinegars each have distinct personalities from mildly sour rice wine vinegar to boldly sweet Italian balsamic. âThe classic way to use sherry vinegar or red wine vinegar is in a simple vinaigrette, which tastes great on simply grilled fish and meat. With so many kinds of vinegar to choose from, you may be asking yourself if you really need a bottle of each. But don't limit yourself to one variety.