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Open AccessArticle

Investigating Alcohol Sweetspot Phenomena in Reduced Alcohol Red Wines

1
School of Agriculture, Food and Wine, The University of Adelaide, Waite Campus, PMB 1, Glen Osmond 5064, Australia
2
The Australian Research Council Training Centre for Innovative Wine Production, PMB 1, Glen Osmond 5064, Australia
3
Treasury Wine Estates, 97 Sturt Highway, Nuriootpa 5352, Australia
4
School of Mathematical Sciences, The University of Adelaide, Adelaide 5000, Australia
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Foods 2019, 8(10), 491; https://doi.org/10.3390/foods8100491
Received: 11 September 2019 / Revised: 8 October 2019 / Accepted: 11 October 2019 / Published: 14 October 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Chemical and Sensory Analysis of Alcoholic Beverages)
Warmer growing seasons, variations to grape ripening dynamics, and stylistic changes have contributed to increased wine alcohol levels, which can negatively impact sensory properties. As a consequence, winemakers have sought technological innovations to produce reduced alcohol wine (RAW). The sensory methodology used by industry to optimize the ethanol content of RAW is known as ‘alcohol sweetspotting’. However, to date, there is no scientific evidence to support the alcohol sweetspot phenomenon, and the sensory methodology used for alcohol sweetspotting has not been validated. In this study, different methods of presenting wine samples (i.e., ordered vs. randomized, and linear vs. circular) were employed to determine to what extent presentation order influences the outcome of alcohol sweetspotting trials. Two different approaches to statistical analysis of sensory data, i.e., chi-square goodness of fit vs. one proportion tests, were also evaluated. Statistical analyses confirmed alcohol sweetspots were apparent in some sweetspot determination trials, but outcomes were not reproducible in replicate determinations (either by panel or by individual panelists). Analysis of data using the one proportion test improved the likelihood of identifying statistically significant differences between RAWs, but variation in individuals’ sensitivity to differences in sensory properties following ethanol removal prevented validation of the alcohol sweetspot phenomenon based on the wines studied. View Full-Text
Keywords: alcohol adjustment; evaporative perstraction; one proportion test; partial dealcoholization; reverse osmosis; sensory analysis alcohol adjustment; evaporative perstraction; one proportion test; partial dealcoholization; reverse osmosis; sensory analysis
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MDPI and ACS Style

Pham, D.-T.; Stockdale, V.J.; Jeffery, D.W.; Tuke, J.; Wilkinson, K.L. Investigating Alcohol Sweetspot Phenomena in Reduced Alcohol Red Wines. Foods 2019, 8, 491.

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