Using viticultural and enological techniques to increase aromatics in white wine is a prized yet challenging technique for commercial wine producers. Equally difficult are challenges encountered in hastening phenolic maturity and thereby increasing color intensity in red wines. The ability to alter organoleptic and visual properties of wines plays a decisive role in vintages in which grapes are not able to reach full maturity, which is seen increasingly more often as a result of climate change. A new, yeast-based product on the viticultural market may give the opportunity to increase sensory properties of finished wines. Manufacturer packaging claims these yeast derivatives intensify wine aromas of white grape varieties, as well as improve phenolic ripeness of red varieties, but the effects of this application have been little researched until now. The current study applied the yeast derivative, according to the manufacture’s instructions, to the leaves of both neutral and aromatic white wine varieties, as well as on structured red wine varieties. Chemical parameters and volatile aromatics were analyzed in grape musts and finished wines, and all wines were subjected to sensory analysis by a tasting panel. Collective results of all analyses showed that the application of the yeast derivative in the vineyard showed no effect across all varieties examined, and did not intensify white wine aromatics, nor improve phenolic ripeness and color intensity in red wine.
The OIV[i] defines terroir as a concept referring to an area in which collective knowledge of the interactions between the physical and biological environment (soil, topography, climate, landscape characteristics and biodiversity features) and vitivinicultural practices develops, providing distinctive wine characteristics. Those are perceptible in the taste of wine, which drives consumer preference and, therefore, wine’s value in the marketplace. Geographical indications (GI) are recognized regulatory constructs formalizing and protecting the nexus between wine taste and the terroir generating it. Despite considering updates, GIs do not consider the nexus as a dynamic one and do not anticipate change, namely of climate. Being climate a fundamental feature of terroir, it strongly impacts wine characteristics, such as taste. According to IPCC[ii], many widespread, rapid and unprecedented changes of climate occurred, some being irreversible over hundreds to thousands of years. Climatic shifts and atmospheric-driven extreme events have been widely reported worldwide. Recent climatic trends are projected to strengthen in upcoming decades, whereas extremes are expected to increase in frequency and intensity, forcing wines away from GI definitions. Geographical shifts of viticultural suitability are projected, often moving into regions and countries different from current ones. Some authors propose adaptation in viticulture, winemaking and product innovation. We show evidence of climate changing wine characteristics in the Douro valley, home of 270-year-old Port GI. We discuss herein resist or adapt stances for when climate changes the nexus between terroir and wine characteristics. Using the MED-GOLD[iii] dashboard, a tool allowing for easy visual navigation of past and future climates, we demonstrate how policymakers can identify future moments, throughout the 21st century under different emission scenarios, when GI specifications will likely need updates (e.g., boundaries, varieties) to reduce climate-change impacts.
Inhibition of Oenococcus oeni during alcoholic fermentation by a selected Lactiplantibacillus plantarum strain
The use of selected cultures of the species Lactiplantibacillus plantarum in Oenology has grown in prominence in recent years. While initial applications of this species centred very much around malolactic fermentation (MLF), there is strong evidence to show that certain strains can be harnessed for their bio-protective effects. Unwanted spontaneous MLF during alcoholic fermentation (AF), driven by rogue Oenococcus oeni, is a winemaking deviation that is very difficult to manage when it occurs. This work set out to determine the efficacy of one particular strain of Lactiplantibacillus plantarum(Viniﬂora® NoVA™ Protect), against this problem in Cabernet Sauvignon must. The work was carried out at commercial scale and in a winery environment and compared the bio-protective culture with the more traditional approach of reducing must pH by the addition of tartaric acid. The combination of both was also investigated. The concentration of both Oenococcus oeni and Lactiplantibacillus plantarum was determined using qPCR. The adventitious Oenococcus oeni showed the most growth during AF in the control wine, whereas in the wines treated with Lactiplantibacillus plantarum a bacteriostatic effect against this species was observed. This effect was comparable to the wines treated with tartaric acid. This has particular commercial relevance for controlling the flora in musts with high pH, or when the addition of tartaric acid is either not permitted or is prohibitive for other reasons.
1H-NMR-based Metabolomics to assess the impact of soil type on the chemical composition of Mediterranean red wines
The aim of this study was to evaluate the effects of different soil types on the chemical composition of Mediterranean red wines, through untargeted and targeted 1H-NMR metabolomics. One milliliter of raw wine was analyzed by means of a Bruker Avance II 400 spectrometer operating at 400.15 MHz. The spectra were recorded by applying the NOESYGPPS1D pulse sequency, to achieve water and ethanol signals suppression. No modification of the pH was performed to avoid any chemical alteration of the matrix. The generation of input variables for untargeted analysis was done via bucketing the spectra. The resulting dataset was preprocessed prior to perform unsupervised PCA, by means of MetaboAnalyst web-based tool suite. The identification of compounds for the targeted analysis was performed by comparison to pure compounds spectra by means of SMA plug-in of MNova 14.2.3 software. The dataset containing the concentrations (%) of identified compounds was subjected to one-way analysis of variance (ANOVA) to highlight significant differences among the wines. The untargeted analysis, carried out through the PCA, revealed a clear differentiation among the wines. The fragments of the spectra contributing mostly to the separation were attributed to flavonoids, aroma compounds and amino acids. The targeted analysis leaded to the identification of 68 compounds, whose concentrations were significant different among the wines. The results were related to soils physical-chemical analysis and showed that: 1) high concentrations of flavan-3-ols and flavonols are correlated with high clay content in soils; 2) high concentrations of anthocyanins, amino acids, and aroma compounds are correlated with neutral and moderately alkaline soil pH; 3) low concentrations of flavonoids and aroma compounds are correlated with high soil organic matter content and acidic pH. The 1H-NMR metabolomic analysis proved to be an excellent tool to discriminate between wines originating from grapes grown on different soil types and revealed that soils in the Mediterranean area exert a strong impact on the chemical composition of the wines.
The aim of this work was to analyze the variability in grape composition of the Tempranillo cultivar related to climatic conditions, in La Mancha Designation of Origin. Grape composition (sugar content, total acidity, pH, malic acid, and total and extractable anthocyanins) recorded during ripening, were analysed for the period 2000-2019. The weather conditions at daily time scale, recorded during the same period, were also evaluated. The relationships between grape parameters with climatic variables related to temperature and to water deficits, referring different periods between phenological events along the growing cycle, were evaluated using regression analysis. High variability in grape composition was observed in the period analysed. Total acidity varied between 3.7 and 7.3 gL-1 while malic acid varied between 1.2 and 4 gL-1. The extractable anthocyanins ranged between 526 and 972 mgL-1, and total anthocyanins ranged between 922 and 1388 mgL-1, being the lowest values recorded in the hottest year (2017). Total acidity decreased 0.77 gL-1 for an increase of 100 GDD, while malic acid decrease in 0.42 gL-1 for the same GDD increase, being the period between veraison and harvest the one that seemed to have higher influence on acidity. In addition, it was confirmed that increasing water deficits decreased acidity. Total and extractable anthocyanins increased in about 210 and 105 mgL-1, respectively, with an increase of 100 GDD from veraison to harvest, and the increase in water deficits favour the increase of anthocyanins, both total and extractable anthocyanins. Total and extractable anthocyanins concentration increased in 35 and 22 mgL-1 per an increase of 10 mm in the water deficit. These results can be of interest to understand the potential changes that grapes composition may suffer under future warmer climates.
Drought effect on aromatic and phenolic potential of seven recovered grapevine varieties in Castilla-La Mancha region (Spain)
The effects of climate change are seriously affecting the quality of wine grapes. High temperatures and drought cause imbalances in the chemical composition of grapes. The result is overripe grapes with low acidity and high sugar content, which produce wines with excessive alcohol content, lacking in freshness and not very aromatic. As a consequence, the search of varieties with capacity of produce quality grapes in adverse climate conditions is a good alternative to preserve the sustainability of vineyards. In this work, quality parameters of seven Vitis vinifera L. cultivars (five whites and two reds) recently recovered from extinction and grown under two different hydric regimes (rainfed and irrigated) were analyzed during the 2020 vintage. At harvest time, weight of 100 berries, must physicochemical parameters (brix degree, total acidity, malic acid, pH), and carbon and oxygen isotope ratios (δ13C, δ18O) were determined. Subsequently, varietal aroma potential index (IPAv) and total polyphenol index (TPI) were analyzed. Quality parameters, IPAv and TPI, showed significant differences between varieties and water regimes. Both red varieties, Moribel and Tinto Fragoso, stood out for their high aromatic and phenolic potential, which was higher under rainfed regime. Regarding to white varieties, Montonera del Casar and Jarrosuelto stood out in terms of varietal aroma potential. Montonera del Casar high acidity in its musts and Jarrosuelto showed the highest berry weights.
Wine quality is strongly linked to climate. Quality scores are often driven by climate variation across different winegrowing regions and years, but also influenced by other aspects of terroir, including variety. While recent work has looked at the relationship between quality scores and climate across many European regions, less work has examined New World winegrowing regions. Here we used scores from three major rating systems (Wine Advocate, Wine Enthusiast and Wine Spectator) combined with daily climate and phenology data to understand what drives variation across wine quality scores in major regions of the Western US, including regions in California, Oregon and Washington. We examined effects of variety, region, and in what phenological period climate was most predictive of quality. As in other studies, we found climate, based mainly on growing degree day (GDD) models, was generally associated with quality—with higher GDD associated with higher scores—but variety and region also had strong effects. Effects of region were generally stronger than variety. Certain varieties received the highest scores in only some areas, while other varieties (e.g., Merlot) generally scored lower across regions. Across phenological stages, GDD during budbreak was often most strongly associated with quality. Our results support other studies that warmer periods generally drive high quality wines, but highlight how much region and variety drive variation in scores outside of climate.