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Effect of high vineyard yields on the physicochemical and sensory characteristics of the Merlot wine

Alberto Miele Luiz Antenor Rizzon About the authors

The objective of the work was to determine the effect of high vineyard yields on the physicochemical and sensory characteristics of the young Merlot wine produced in a mountainous region. The experiment was conducted during the 1999/2000 grapevine vegetative cycle. It had four treatments (vineyard yields - kg ha-1 - 22,400, 27,800, 34,700 and 44,900) and three replications; each parcel was constituted by five grapevines. Ripe grapes were harvested in February of 2000 and transported to the Microvinification Laboratory where they were processed in 20L glass recipients. Physicochemical variables were determined by the classic methods and sensory analysis was performed by a panel using a non-parametric tasting sheet. Data were submitted to the polynomial regression analysis. The results show that increasing yields did not have any effect on the physicochemical variables. However, it showed significant effect on the variables related to vision, smell and taste. Wines made with grapes from vineyards having the smaller yield showed a more pronounced red-violet color; in the smell they were cleaner, elegant and had higher tipicity; concerning to the taste, they showed a higher equilibrium, tipicity, fruit notes and body. Those from average yields had a more intense color; smell more intense too, but with vegetal and green pepper characters more pronounced; they were more intense in taste. The other variables were not affected by the vineyard yield.

grape; tasting; sensory analysis; viticulture; enology

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