Article citation: Pavla Polášková, Chem. Soc. Rev., 2008, DOI: 10.1039/b714455p
Wine flavor: chemistry in a glass
Pavla Poláková, Julian Herszage and Susan E. Ebeler
Although hundreds of chemical compounds have been identified in grapes and wines, only a few compounds actually contribute to sensory perception of wine flavor. This critical review focuses on volatile compounds that contribute to wine aroma and provides an overview of recent developments in analytical techniques for volatiles analysis, including methods used to identify the compounds that make the greatest contributions to the overall aroma. Knowledge of volatile composition alone is not enough to completely understand the overall wine aroma, however, due to complex interactions of odorants with each other and with other nonvolatile matrix components. These interactions and their impact on aroma volatility are the focus of much current research and are also reviewed here. Finally, the sequencing of the grapevine and yeast genomes in the past 10 years provides the opportunity for exciting multidisciplinary studies aimed at understanding the influences of multiple genetic and environmental factors on grape and wine flavor biochemistry and metabolism (147 references).