Food and Bioprocess Technology

, Volume 6, Issue 9, pp 2289–2305 | Cite as

Partial Dealcoholization of Red Wines by Membrane Contactor Technique: Effect on Sensory Characteristics and Volatile Composition

  • Maria T. LisantiEmail author
  • Angelita Gambuti
  • Alessandro Genovese
  • Paola Piombino
  • Luigi Moio
Original Paper


Recently, the European Union regulation has fixed the maximum permitted dealcoholization level at 2 %; however in some cases, higher dealcoholization levels could be necessary. It is assumed that higher levels of dealcoholization could negatively affect the organoleptic quality of wine, but little data on this item is available. In the present study, two red wines (cv. Aglianico) with different initial alcohol contents (15.37 and 13.28 % v/v), were partially dealcoholized at three levels (−2, −3, −5 % v/v), by a polypropylene hollow fibre membrane contactor apparatus. In order to evaluate if dealcoholized wines differed from the untreated ones, triangle sensory tests were performed. Both −2 % wines were not perceived as different from the standard wines, while both −5 % wines were different. Sensory profiles and overall quality ranking were obtained by a selected and trained panel. Dealcoholization caused a modification of the sensory profiles, and the greatest differences were found after a dealcoholization of 5 % v/v. The most decreased olfactory notes were those of “Red fruits”, “Cherry” and “Spicy”, which is very important for the sensory quality of red wine. Concerning taste, both −5 % dealcoholized wines were more astringent than the correspondent untreated ones. Slighter differences were found for the other degrees of dealcoholization. The analysis of the volatile compounds, both free and glycoconjugated was performed by solid-phase extraction and gas chromatography mass spectrography analysis. While the composition of the glycoconjugated volatile fraction was almost not affected, many free compounds were decreased, most of all esters and alcohols, with an increasing amounts as the level of dealcoholization raised.


Red wine Partial dealcoholization Membrane contactor Sensory characteristics Free and bound volatiles 



The authors thank Enolife s.r.l., which has furnished the membrane contactor apparatus and Dr. Francesco Soleti for his assistance in the dealcoholization process. Special thanks are due to Karolina Sveiby for her kind help in the linguistic revision of the manuscript and to Antonio Piccolo for his help in improving the graphic quality of the figures.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Maria T. Lisanti
    • 1
    • 2
    Email author
  • Angelita Gambuti
    • 1
    • 2
  • Alessandro Genovese
    • 1
    • 2
  • Paola Piombino
    • 1
    • 2
  • Luigi Moio
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Dipartimento di Scienza degli Alimenti, Facoltà di AgrariaUniversità degli Studi di Napoli Federico IIPortici, NapoliItaly
  2. 2.Corso di Laurea in Viticoltura ed EnologiaAvellinoItaly

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