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ARS Home » Pacific West Area » Corvallis, Oregon » Horticultural Crops Production and Genetic Improvement Research Unit » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #402529

Research Project: Improved Fruit, Grape and Wine Products through Precision Agriculture and Quality Component Evaluation

Location: Horticultural Crops Production and Genetic Improvement Research Unit

Title: Influence of saliva on the sensory properties of US commercial smoke affected wines: preliminary findings

item PAUP, VICTORIA - Washington State University
item MONTERO, MARIA - Washington State University
item ROSS, CAROLYN - Washington State University
item Lee, Jungmin

Submitted to: Food Science and Nutrition
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 1/4/2024
Publication Date: 1/12/2024
Citation: Paup, V.D., Montero, M.L., Ross, C.F., Lee, J. 2024. Influence of saliva on the sensory properties of US commercial smoke affected wines: preliminary findings. Food Science and Nutrition. 12:2736-2746.

Interpretive Summary: Making fine wine begins in the vineyard with the production of high-quality fruit. Wildfire, agricultural burn, and smoke have been implicated in affecting wine grape quality components, and ultimately the resulting wine. Thirty-six smoke impacted commercial wines were obtained from California, Oregon, and Washington. The in-mouth changes of smoke compounds could make the wines unpalatable to many consumers. Saliva decreased overall liking of these wines, with none of them rated above “might purchase” category, indicating very few consumers would purchase these wines if they were allowed to taste them first. Wine makers have indicated their need for faster tools to aid with objective quality management. Electronic tongue was able to discriminate between smoked exposed wines as-is and saliva added wine, but additional work is needed to monitor wine faults at a winery production setting. Nonetheless, this work demonstrates the potential use of e-tongue in lieu of human sensory panels.

Technical Abstract: Previous research has suggested that the impact of smoke affected wines require human evaluation due to in-mouth changes in perception, perhaps associated with saliva. Smoke affected wines (n = 36) from three major wine growing regions in the US were sourced from commercial wineries. A subset of these wines (n = 7) were evaluated by a consumer panel (n = 57) and electronic tongue (e-tongue) to determine the influence of saliva in the sensory profile. Consumers assessed the wines, before and after individual saliva addition, for aroma and other sensory attributes. Pooled saliva from consumers was used to treat all wines obtained (n = 36) and then analyzed using the e-tongue. Results showed that saliva did not significantly alter the overall aroma, or other than fruity or woody aroma liking by consumers (p > 0.05). However, the presence of saliva significantly lowered overall liking in both red and white wines that were affected by smoke (p = 0.05). Consumers rated the subset of smoke affected wines below the ‘might purchase’ category, indicating these wines were not considered acceptable by consumers. When individual pairs of smoke affected wines (before and after saliva additions) were assessed using the e-tongue, the device was able to differentiate the pairs, validating potential usefulness to discern wine changes, though the discrimination indices were moderate to low (68.8 to 11.9%). Based on these data, in human ratings of the aroma and appearance of smoked affected wines, saliva decreased overall liking, and this was somewhat distinguishable by e-tongue analysis.