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Open AccessArticle

Key Aroma Compounds of Dark Chocolates Differing in Organoleptic Properties: A GC-O Comparative Study

1
Centre des Sciences du Goût et de l’Alimentation (CSGA), AgroSup Dijon, CNRS, INRAE, Université de Bourgogne Franche-Comté, F-21000 Dijon, France
2
CIRAD, UMR Qualisud, F-34398 Montpellier, France
3
ChemoSens Platform, CSGA, F-21000 Dijon, France
4
Valrhona, 14 av. du Président Roosevelet, F-26602 Tain l’Hermitage, France
5
Qualisud, Univ Montpellier, CIRAD, Montpellier SupAgro, Univ d’Avignon, Univ de La Réunion, F-34000 Montpellier, France
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Eugenio Aprea
Molecules 2020, 25(8), 1809; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules25081809
Received: 31 March 2020 / Revised: 10 April 2020 / Accepted: 12 April 2020 / Published: 15 April 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Volatile Compounds and Smell Chemicals (Odor and Aroma) of Food)
Dark chocolate samples were previously classified into four sensory categories. The classification was modelled based on volatile compounds analyzed by direct introduction mass spectrometry of the chocolates’ headspace. The purpose of the study was to identify the most discriminant odor-active compounds that should characterize the four sensory categories. To address the problem, a gas chromatography-olfactometry (GC-O) study was conducted by 12 assessors using a comparative detection frequency analysis (cDFA) approach on 12 exemplary samples. A nasal impact frequency (NIF) difference threshold combined with a statistical approach (Khi² test on k proportions) revealed 38 discriminative key odorants able to differentiate the samples and to characterize the sensory categories. A heatmap emphasized the 19 most discriminant key odorants, among which heterocyclic molecules (furanones, pyranones, lactones, one pyrrole, and one pyrazine) played a prominent role with secondary alcohols, acids, and esters. The initial sensory classes were retrieved using the discriminant key volatiles in a correspondence analysis (CA) and a hierarchical cluster analysis (HCA). Among the 38 discriminant key odorants, although previously identified in cocoa products, 21 were formally described for the first time as key aroma compounds of dark chocolate. Moreover, 13 key odorants were described for the first time in a cocoa product. View Full-Text
Keywords: dark chocolate; key odorant; key aroma; gas chromatography-olfactometry (GC-O); comparative detection frequency analysis (cDFA); nasal impact frequency (NIF); correspondence analysis (CA); hierarchical cluster analysis (HCA); heatmap dark chocolate; key odorant; key aroma; gas chromatography-olfactometry (GC-O); comparative detection frequency analysis (cDFA); nasal impact frequency (NIF); correspondence analysis (CA); hierarchical cluster analysis (HCA); heatmap
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Deuscher, Z.; Gourrat, K.; Repoux, M.; Boulanger, R.; Labouré, H.; Le Quéré, J.-L. Key Aroma Compounds of Dark Chocolates Differing in Organoleptic Properties: A GC-O Comparative Study. Molecules 2020, 25, 1809.

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