Effect of inert gas and prefermentative treatment with polyvinylpolypyrrolidone on the phenolic composition of Chilean Sauvignon blanc wines


Correspondence to: Alejandro Cáceres-Mella, Departmento de Agroindustria y Enología, Facultad de Ciencias Agronómicas, Universidad de Chile, Casilla 1004, 8820808 Santiago, Chile. Email: alecaceres@uchile.cl



Sauvignon blanc wines are produced under a wide variety of winemaking conditions, some of which include different fruit-ripening levels, cold soaks and the use of fining agents and inert gases. Anecdotal evidence suggests that sensory variations among these wines may have to do with their phenolic composition and concentration. Therefore the aim of this work was to study the effects of different winemaking conditions typically used in Chile on the phenolic composition and concentration of Sauvignon blanc wines.


The use of an inert gas (CO2) in winemaking produced differences in the proportion of proanthocyanidin fractions. A higher concentration of flavan-3-ol monomers resulted from winemaking in the presence of inert gas. This condition also produced a higher content of total phenols and low-molecular-weight phenolic compounds. Low doses of polyvinylpolypyrrolidone (PVPP) in the prefermentative treatments produced wines with a higher content of phenolic compounds. Under these conditions a higher content of polymeric proanthocyanidins was observed.


Different winemaking conditions modified the concentration and proportion of proanthocyanidin fractions and the global phenolic composition of the resulting white wines. This should be taken into account by the wineries producing these wines. © 2012 Society of Chemical Industry