Sensory characterisation of several red cultivar (Vitis vinifera L.) wines, using berry sugar accumulation as a physiological indicator and sequential harvest

Nell, Marissa (2015-03)

Thesis (MSc)--Stellenbosch University, 2015.

Thesis

ENGLISH ABSTRACT: The global wine industry has shifted to a more adopted ‘consumer-preference’ production. Modern wine consumers are more knowledgeable and cultivated in their understanding of wine quality, value and style. The quality of red wines mainly depends on grape composition, the wine making process and the ability of tasters to recognise sensory attributes. The harvest date/stage has an influence on the grape composition, thus making the decision on when to harvest an important factor in the production of quality wines or different wine styles. The traditional indicators used in the wine industry to determine time of harvest are more related to the perception of taste and mouthfeel and give little indication of the style of wine in terms of aromatic profile. A new physiological indicator using berry sugar accumulation for the purpose of sequential harvest is proposed to assist the winemaker in producing wines with possible different sensory profiles. This indicator can be used in association with the classical indicators of ripening to affect the diversity of wine styles from a single vineyard or a group of vineyards. The wines could thus have different potential aroma profiles, depending on when the grapes were harvested. The main aim of this study was to assess the effect of performing sequential harvest using a physiological indicator on red wine’s sensory composition. This was done to study the possible relation between harvest time (e.g. fruit composition evolution) and the wine styles/sensory attributes across the different harvest times, thereby possibly increasing the diversity of wine styles. A theoretical berry sugar loading concept was compiled and displays a phase of rapid sugar loading starting at véraison followed by a plateau phase. Depending on whether grapes were harvested in the beginning, mid or end of the plateau phase of fruit sugar accumulation the wines could have different potential aroma profiles. Three main stages: fresh fruit (FF), neutral (N) or pre ripe and mature fruit (MF) has been previously proposed using the sugar loading concept and in terms of harvesting dates. Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot grapes form Eikendal Vineyards, Stellenbosch were used to make wines according to sequential harvest. Four harvest stages were considered, pre fresh fruit (Pre FF), fresh fruit (FF), mature fruit (MF) and over ripe (OR). The wines were tasted and analysed using two different sensory techniques. In both Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon wines, the PreFF and OR stages could be more easily discriminated than the two harvest stages in-between, FF and MF. The results suggested that the wines made from the FF and MF stages could not be distinguished from each other in general when the attribute citation frequency method or sorting tasks were performed. However, a trend could be observed for both Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot wines in terms of aroma attributes with attributes changing from green to ripe fruit during ripening using expert tasters. Relevant research should be engaged to refine sequential harvest in order to obtain more diverse wine styles from a single site or a group of vineyards.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: Die wêreldwye wynbedryf het ’n verskuiwing ondergaan na ’n verbruikersvoorkeurbenadering in produksie. Wynverbruikers is deesdae beter ingelig en meer ontwikkeld ten opsigte van hulle kennis van wyngehalte, wynstyl, asook die waarde van wyn. Die gehalte van rooiwyn hang hoofsaaklik af van die druifsamestelling, die wynmaakproses en die vermoë van proewers om sensoriese eienskappe te herken. Aangesien die oesdatum/-fase ’n invloed het op druifsamestelling, is die besluit oor wanneer daar geoes moet word ’n belangrike faktor in die vervaardiging van gehaltewyne of verskillende wynstyle. Die tradisionele aanwysers wat in die wynbedryf gebruik word om oestyd te bepaal, hou verband met die waarneming van smaak en mondgevoel en gee weinig aanduiding van die wynstyl op grond van die aromatiese profiel. ’n Nuwe fisiologiese aanwyser wat gebruik maak van suikerakkumulasie in die druiwekorrel in opeenvolgende oeste, het ten doel om die wynmaker te help om wyne met verskeie moontlike sensoriese profiele te vervaardig. Hierdie aanwyser kan saam met die klassieke aanwysers van rypwording gebruik word om ’n verskeidenheid wynstyle uit een wingerd of wingerdgroep te vervaardig. Die wyne kan dus potensieel oor verskillende aromatiese profiele beskik, afhangend van wanneer die druiwe geoes is. Die hoofdoel van die studie was om die invloed van opeenvolgende oes te toets deur ’n fisiologiese aanwyser op rooiwyn se sensoriese samestelling toe te pas. Dit word gedoen deur die moontlike verhouding tussen die oestyd (bv. ontwikkeling van vrugsamestelling) en die wynstyle of wyn se sensoriese kenmerke op verskillende oestye te bestudeer ten einde die verskeidenheid wynstyle potensieel te vermeerder. ’n Teoretiese konsep van druifsuikeropname is saamgestel wat dui op ’n fase van vinnige suikeropname wat by véraison begin, gevolg deur ’n plato-fase. Wyn kan oor verskillende moontlike aromatiese profiele beskik, afhangend daarvan of die druiwe aan die begin, middel of einde van die plato-fase van suikeropname geoes is. Drie hooffases is al voorheen voorgestel deur gebruik te maak van die konsep van suikeropname volgens oesdatum, te wete vars vrugte (VV) (“fresh fruit”, FF), neutraal (N) (“neutral”, N) of voor ryp (“pre ripe”), en ryp vrugte (RF) (“mature fruit”, MF). Cabernet Sauvignon- en Merlot-druiwe van Eikendal, Stellenbosch, se wingerde is gebruik om wyn volgens opeenvolgende oes te maak. Vier oesfases is oorweeg, te wete voor vars vrugte (VVV) (“pre fresh fruit”, Pre FF), vars vrugte (VV) (“fresh fruit”, FF), ryp vrugte (RV) (“mature fruit”, MF), en oorryp (OR) (“over ripe”, OR). Die wyn is geproe en geanaliseer deur gebruik te maak van twee verskille sensoriese tegnieke. In die geval van beide die Merlot- en Cabernet Sauvignon-wyn kon die VVV- en OR-fases makliker onderskei word as die twee tussenin-fases, VV en RV. Resultate dui daarop dat wyn wat van die VV- en RV-fases gemaak is, oor die algemeen nie van mekaar onderskei kan word wanneer die frekwensie van kenmerkaanhaling-metode en sorteringstaak uitgevoer word nie. ’n Tendens kon egter waargeneem word vir Cabernet Sauvignon- én Merlot-wyn ten opsigte van aromatiese kenmerke, deurdat kenmerke gedurende rypwording van groen na ryp vrugte verander het indien ekspertproewers gebruik is. Verdere navorsing moet gedoen word om opeenvolgende oes te verfyn ten einde ’n wyer verskeidenheid wynstyle van ’n enkele area of wingerdgroep te verkry.

Please refer to this item in SUNScholar by using the following persistent URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10019.1/96887
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