OENO IVAS 2019 banner
IVES 9 IVES Conference Series 9 OENO IVAS 9 OENO IVAS 2019 9 Analysis and composition of grapes, wines, wine spirits 9 Impact of grape maturity on esters content and sensory characters in wines fermented with yeast strains of different genetic backgrounds

Impact of grape maturity on esters content and sensory characters in wines fermented with yeast strains of different genetic backgrounds


Grapes composition is a factor well known to affect wines composition and sensory expression. The goal of this study was to evaluate how grapes composition modifications linked to maturity level could affect wines aromatic expression and esters composition. An experimental design has been developed from grapes of Vitis vinifera cv Merlot. On each vine plot, grapes have been harvested at two maturity levels and then have been fermented under standardized condition with two yeast strains : a commercial one and another obtained by deletion of the four main esterases of the previous one. Fermentation performed with the esterases deletes strain led to wines with main ester levels generally lower by a factor 5 to 10 in comparison with the original strain.

Merlot wines from the highest maturity level and fermented with the commercial strain shown lower concentrations for fatty acids ethyl esters and higher alcohol acetates but higher concentrations for some substituted ethyl esters like ethyl leucate. When fermentations were performed with an esterases deleted strain, all esters contents remained the same.

Sensory analysis confirmed these results. For the wines fermented with the commercial strain, when the maturity increased, wine fruity aromatic expression decreased (particularly its global intensity and the fresh, redberry- and fermentative fruits character) whereas when the fermentation was performed by the deleted strain wines fruity characteristics were the same.

Aromatic reconstitution performed, on one hand, to erase the consequences of maturity differences and, on the other hand, to erase the consequences of the strain performing alcoholic fermentation on esters contents showed that esters were not, alone, responsible for the difference of sensory characteristics for wines from very ripe grapes (particularly for the jammy fruit notes) but that their presence was essential for the perception of this difference. 

Our results highlight once again the role of esters in the overall wine fruity aromatic expression and underline their indirect importance in the perception of some varietal characteristics through perceptive interaction phenomena.


Publication date: June 11, 2020

Issue: OENO IVAS 2019

Type: Article


Jean-Christophe Barbe, Marine Trujillo, Marina Bely, Warren Albertin, Isabelle Masneuf-Pomarede, Benoit Colonna, Philippe Marullo

Unité de recherche Oenologie, EA 4577, USC 1366 INRA, ISVV, Université de Bordeaux, Bordeaux INP, F33882 Villenave d’Ornon France.
UMR EGFV, Bordeaux Sciences Agro, INRAE, Université de Bordeaux, ISVV, Villenave d’Ornon, France.
Pernod Ricard, Créteil, France.
Biolaffort, Bordeaux, France.

Contact the author


Wine aroma, Esters, Maturity, Saccharomyces cerevisiae 


IVES Conference Series | OENO IVAS 2019


Related articles…

Investigations into the effects of a commercial organic fertilizer and of quality compost on the soil and the vines

The influences of quality compost A+ and of a commercial organic fertilizer based on dry mash from bioethanol production, blackstrap molasses, vinasse, PNC (potato nitrogen concentrate) and CSL (corn steep liquor) on the humus content, on the mineral nitrogen content in the soil, in the must and in the vine leaves, on pruning wood

Aroma quality of fortified wines from different Moscato cv. Cultivated in sicily

AIM: Vitis vinifera L. cv. Moscato includes different varieties, mainly white grapes with a medium-sized berry, spheroidal or slightly flattened in shape, yellow greenish color which becomes golden yellow or amber when exposed to the sun. Moscato varieties are mainly used for the production of sweet aromatic wines

Impact of climate change on the viticultural climate of the Protected Designation of Origin “Jumilla” (SE Spain)

Protected Designation of Origin “Jumilla” (PDO Jumilla) is located in the Spanish provinces of Albacete and Murcia, in the South-eastern part of the Iberian Peninsula, where most of the models predict a severe impact of climate change in next decades. PDO Jumilla covers an area of 247,054 hectares, of which more than 22,000 hectares

Development of a new sustainable filtering media for wine and beer clarification and sterilisation

Different separation techniques are frequently used during vinification process. Nowadays, clarification and microbiological stabilization of wine or beer can be done using precoat filters or crossflow filters to remove yeast and bacteria. Kieselguhr powders are the most used filter aids for precoat filtration. Their crystalline structure and their pulverulent nature induce ecotoxicological risks when used. Moreover, regeneration and reuse of these filter aids is not efficient and the filtration waste requires cost effective retreatment.

Effects of long-term drought stress on soil microbial communities from a Syrah cultivar vineyard

Changes in the rainfall and temperature patterns affect the increase of drought periods becoming one of the major constraints to assure agricultural and crop resilience in the Mediterranean regions. Beside the adaptation of agricultural practices, also the microbial compartment associated to plants should be considered in the crop management. It is known that the microbial community change according to several factors such as soil composition, agricultural management system, plant variety and rootstock.