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Keywords:

  • Vitis vinifera;
  • anthocyanin;
  • grape;
  • colour;
  • red wine;
  • vineyard

Abstract

Grapes of Touriga Nacional and Touriga Francesa red Vitis vinifera varieties have been sampled from two vineyard sites at different altitudes during three consecutive vintage years (1997, 1998 and 1999) in the Douro Valley. The total anthocyanidin monoglucosides (AMGs) detected by HPLC/DAD and the red colour of grape skin extracts were monitored during the last month of maturation. Microvinifications were performed with the grapes studied and the resulting Port wines were analysed. Malvidin 3-glucoside and its acylated esters were the major AMGs irrespective of cultivar at harvest date. Vineyard altitude, together with other variables, was found to be an important factor contributing to the amount of anthocyanin compounds found in grapes of Touriga Nacional and Touriga Francesa. Overall, the climatic conditions observed at higher vineyard sites appeared to be advantageous, resulting in larger amounts of AMGs in grapes. The same outcome was obtained in the resulting wines, which showed higher levels of AMGs when made from grapes grown at higher altitude, especially for Touriga Francesa.

© 2002 Society of Chemical Industry