Influence of pH and ethanol on malolactic fermentation and volatile aroma compound composition in white wines

Knoll C. ; Fritsch S. ; Schnell S. ; Grossmann M. ; Rauhut D. ; Du Toit M. (2011)

Article

The present study investigated the influences of pH and ethanol on malolactic fermentation (MLF) and the volatile aroma profile of the subsequent white wines from Riesling and Chardonnay inoculated with two different Oenococcus oeni strains. In all cases MLF was induced after completion of alcoholic fermentation (AF). Partial MLF occurred under low pH 3.2 and high alcohol (118.3 g/L) conditions. In the cases with complete MLF, the time required for each strain varied from 13 to 61 days and was dependent on bacterial culture, cultivar and wine parameter. Chemical properties of each wine were determined after AF, complete and partial MLF. The wines showed significant differences in total higher alcohols, esters and acids that are important for the sensory profile and quality of wine. This work demonstrated that the wine matrix as well as the pH and alcohol concentration affects MLF and the final volatile aroma profile. Results indicate that changes in volatile aroma composition are not necessarily related to complete MLF and that partial MLF already has distinct influences on the wine aroma profile of white wines. © 2011 Elsevier Ltd.

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