Phenolic Compounds in Cork-Closed Bottle-Fermented Sparkling Wines


Bottle fermented sparkling wine in South Africa is known as Méthode Cap Classique which is based onthe method used in France for Champagne. The use of cork, instead of a crown cap during the secondfermentation in sparkling wine was investigated for its effect on the phenolic profile of wines. Phenolicacids susceptible to migration from cork into wine were studied in two-disc corks from three differentcommercial suppliers, coded as Cork A, Cork R and Cork C and a crown cap closure. Gallic, caftaric,caffeic and p-coumaric acids were quantified in all samples using a liquid chromatographic technique.Physicochemical parameters were also measured in the wine using a spectrophotometric technique. Totalacidity and pH were not significantly different among the wines. Cork R wines were however significantlydifferent in alcohol. Residual sugar for all samples was below the limit of detection. Gallic acid wassignificantly highest in Cork A wines, which indicates the contribution of Cork A to the concentration ofthis compound in the wine. Different cork types are assumed to release different concentrations of phenoliccompounds. This may be due to differences in surface roughness of cork that would increase the surfacearea in contact with the wine. Therefore, corks from different origins (suppliers) could be used to bringabout subtle differences to the wine.  

Author Biographies

P.P. Minnaar
Agricultural Research Council, Stellenbosch
P. Gerber
Colmant Cap Classique & Champagne, Franschhoek,
M. Booyse
Agricultural Research Council, Biometry Unit, Stellenbosch
N. Jolly, Post-harvest and Agro-processing TechnologiesARC Infruitec-NietvoorbijStellenboschSouth Africa
Senior Researcher (Microbiology), Post-harvest and Agro-processing Technologies, ARC Infruitec-Nietvoorbij, Stellenbosch.


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