Macrowine 2021
IVES 9 IVES Conference Series 9 Macrowine 9 Macrowine 2021 9 Chemical diversity of 'special' wine styles: fortified wines, passito style, botrytized and ice wines, orange wines, sparkling wines 9 Effect of different winemaking practices on chemical composition, aroma profile and sensory perception of ribolla gialla sparkling wines

Effect of different winemaking practices on chemical composition, aroma profile and sensory perception of ribolla gialla sparkling wines


AIM: This study aims at evaluating the effects of different refermentation methods (Martinotti/Charmat vs. Classic) on the chemical composition, aroma profile and sensory characteristics of Ribolla Gialla sparkling wines; furthermore, certain winemaking practices (skin contact and use of pectolytic enzymes) were investigated considering the extraction of varietal aromas and aroma precursors.

METHODS: Sparkling wines were produced at pilot-plant scale. Concerning refermentation methods, traditional Martinotti (MB – 30 days length), extended Martinotti (ML) with 4 months of aging on lees and Classic method (CL) with 11 months of aging on lees were compared; in a second trial, skin contact (MM), enzyme addition on must also subjected to maceration (ME), and enzyme addition on base wine (VE) were evaluated. All experimental trials were performed in triplicate. Basic chemical composition, varietal (terpenes and C13-norisoprenoids in free and bound form) and non-varietal aroma compounds were evaluated by LLE-GCMS analysis; finally, sensory analysis was also performed, by descriptive testing.

RESULTS: Basic chemical composition was influenced by refermentation method, with higher acidity and lower pH in MB and the occurrence of malolactic fermentation in ML and CL. The aroma profile was also affected by winemaking practices applied. In sparkling wines produced by MB, a higher concentration of trans-geraniol was observed; this is the only terpenol found Ribolla Gialla grapes [1], even if below its odor threshold [2]; however, the aroma profile of MB sparkling wines was mainly characterized by esters that generally confer fresh, fruity and floral notes to the wines (e.g., hexyl acetate) [3]; on the other hand, esters formed during ageing (e.g., ethyl lactate) together with fatty acids and higher alcohols were found in higher concentration in CL sparkling wines, making their aroma profile more complex; finally, wines obtained by ML showed the poorest volatile profile. These results were also confirmed by sensory analysis. Skin contact and especially enzyme addition on base wine allowed to obtain a higher extraction and release of some varietal aroma compounds (e.g., geraniol, linalool and α-terpineol), even if below their odor thresholds. The same trend was observed for C13-norisoprenoids, except for β-damascenone. Concerning non-varietal aroma compounds, sparkling wines obtained by MM and ME showed the highest concentration of some esters (e.g. isoamyl acetate), probably related to a greater extraction of their precursors (amino acids) from grapes [4, 5].


The overall chemical composition and sensory profile of Ribolla Gialla sparkling wines are significantly affected by the enological practices used. These results may address winemakers to produce Ribolla Gialla sparkling wines, tailored on market needs and consumer’s preference.


Publication date: September 15, 2021

Issue: Macrowine 2021

Type: Article


Sabrina Voce , Franco, BATTISTUTTA, Lara, TAT, Paolo, SIVILOTTI, Piergiorgio, COMUZZO, 

University of Udine, Department of Agricultural, Food, Environmental and Animal Sciences, via delle Scienze 206, Udine – Italy

Contact the author


sparkling wine, ribolla gialla, refermentation, aroma compounds, maceration, enzyme


Related articles…

Physiological and growth reaction of Shiraz/101-14 Mgt to row orientation and soil water status

Advanced knowledge on grapevine row orientation is required to improve establishment, management and outcomes of vineyards on terroirs with different environmental conditions (climate, soil, topography) and in view of a future change to more extreme climatic conditions. The purpose of this study was to determine the combined effect of row orientation, plant water status and ripeness level on the physiological and viticultural reaction of Shiraz/101-14 Mgt.

Effects of mechanical leafing and deficit irrigation on Cabernet Sauvignon grown in warm climate of California

San Joaquin Valley accounts for 40% of wine grape acreage and produces 70% of wine grape in California. Fruit quality is one of most important factors which impact the economical sustainability of farming wine grapes in this region. Due to the recent drought and expected labor cost increase, the wine industry is thrilled to understand how to improve fruit quality while maintaining the yield with less water and labor input. The present study aims to study the interactive effects of mechanical leafing and deficit irrigation on yield and berry compositions of Cabernet Sauvignon grown in warm climate of California.

The effects of cane girdling on berry texture properties and the concentration of some aroma compounds in three table grape cultivars

The marketability of the table grapes is highly influenced by the consumer demand; therefore the market value of the table grapes is mainly characterized by its berry size, colour, taste and texture. Girdling could cause accumulation of several components in plants above the ringing of the phloem including clusters and resulting improved maturity. The aim of the experiments was to examine the effect of girdling on berry texture characteristics and aroma concentration.

Application of a fluorescence-based method to evaluate the ripening process and quality of Pinot Blanc grape

The chemical composition of grape berries at harvest is one of the most important factors that should be considered to produce high quality wines. Among the different chemical classes which characterize the grape juice, the polyphenolic compound, such as flavonoids, contribute to the final taste and color of wines. Recently, an innovative non-destructive method, based on chlorophyll fluorescence, was developed to estimate the phenolic maturity of red grape varieties through the evaluation of anthocyanins accumulated in the berry skin. To date, only few data are available about the application of this method on white grape varieties.

Different yield regulation strategies in semi-minimal-pruned hedge (SMPH) and impact on bunch architecture

Yields in the novel viticulture training system Semi-Minimal-Pruned Hedge (SMPH) are generally higher compared to the traditional Vertical Shoot Positioning (VSP). Excessive yields have a negative impact on the vine and wine quality, which can result in substantial losses in yield in subsequent vintages (alternate bearing) or penalties in fruit quality. Therefore yield regulation is essential. The bunch architecture in SMPH differs from VSP. Generally there is a higher amount but smaller bunches with lower single berry weights in SMPH compared to VSP.