martes, 21 de julio de 2020

Artificial Intelligence Methods for Constructing Wine Barrels with a Controlled Oxygen Transmission Rate

It is not only important to classify the staves by their OTR, but also to select them to build a barrel with controlled OTR

Molecules 2020, 25(14), 3312;

Oxygen is an important factor in the wine aging process, and the oxygen transmission rate (OTR) is the parameter of the wood that reflects its oxygen permeation. OTR has not been considered in the cooperage industry yet; however, recent studies proposed a nondestructive method for estimating the OTR of barrel staves, but an efficient method to combine these staves to build barrels with a desired OTR is needed to implement it in the industry. This article proposes artificial intelligence methods for selecting staves for the construction of barrel heads or bodies with a desired target OTR. Genetic algorithms were used to implement these methods in consideration of the known OTR of the staves and the geometry of the wine barrels. The proposed methods were evaluated in several scenarios: homogenizing the OTR of the actual constructed barrels, constructing low-OTR and high-OTR barrels based on a preclassification of the staves and implementing the proposed method in real cooperage conditions. The results of these experiments suggest the suitability of the proposed methods for their implementation in a cooperage in order to build controlled OTR barrels.

This paper published in Molecules belongs to the:

Special Issue "Alcoholic Beverages Aging Technologies"

domingo, 7 de junio de 2020

It is now possible to find out how the amount of O2 influences wine barrel aging and later in the bottle thanks to the barrels with controlled oxygenation

Study of the role of oxygen in the evolution of red wine colour under different ageing conditions in barrels and bottles

 Rosario Sánchez-Gómez; Maria del Alamo-Sanza; Víctor Martínez-Martínez and Ignacio Nevares 

  • The variation in the rate of oxygenation during ageing produces different wines.
  • Wines aged with high oxygenation rate showed greater avidity to consume oxygen.
  • Wine colour increase after air saturation is greater with barrel ageing time.
  • Air saturated wine stored for 35 days at 12 °C reproduces 4 months of bottle ageing.
Wine ageing in barrels is conditioned, among other factors, by the amount of oxygen received during this process, which thus impacts its final properties. The aim of this study was to evaluate the effect of oxygen on wine colour during ageing in barrels and bottles during different times. The use of barrels with different and known rates of oxygenation allows the effect of different oxygenation conditions throughout the process in barrels and its later evolution in bottles. A simulation process of ageing in bottles was used to study the impact of bottling in wines after differing ageing periods in barrels. The study of winés oxygen consumption capacity has been tied to colour modifications during ageing in barrels and bottles. Wines aged in barrels with a high oxygenation rate showed greater avidity to consume oxygen taking less time to consume that available, which is reflected in a greater increase in colour intensity.

Anyone clicking on this link before July 25, 2020 will be taken directly to the final version of this article on ScienceDirect, which they are welcome to read or download. No sign up, registration or fees are required.

martes, 2 de junio de 2020

Once we can build barrels with different OTR, what effects does it have on the wine?

Volatile composition of oak wood from different customised oxygenation wine barrels: Effect on red wine

Rosario Sánchez-Gómez; Maria del Alamo-Sanza e IgnacioNevares
Food Chemistry
Volume 329, 1 November 2020, 127181

Q. petraea volatile composition is related to the oxygen transfer rate (OTR)
•Toasting process affect differently to staves from Q. petraea with low or high OTR.
•Low-OTR staves showed higher content in phenolic aldehydes and furanic compounds.
•High-OTR staves had higher content in some volatile phenols, aldehydes and lactones.
•Red wines aged for three months in high-OTR and low-OTR barrels were different.

The compounds that the wood releases to the wine and the oxygen transmission rate (OTR) of the barrel define the final wine. The new possibility of choosing the OTR of the barrel allows the winemaker to globally control the ageing process. The aim of this work was to study the volatile composition of woods classified according to their OTR, which are used to build barrels for wine ageing. The results showed that volatile composition differs depending on wood OTR and the temperature reached during toasting. On the toasted side of the stave in contact with the wine, low OTR wood had a statistically higher content in furan compounds (5-hydroxymethylfurfural, furfural and 5-methylfurfural), acetovanillone and phenolic aldehydes (vanillin and syringaldehyde), while 4-ethylguaiacol and trans-β-methyl-γ-octalactone were significantly higher in staves with a high OTR. The same red wine aged first for three months in high and low oxygenation barrels presents different characteristics.

Anyone clicking on this link before July 22, 2020 will be taken directly to the final version of your article on ScienceDirect, which they are welcome to read or download. No sign up, registration or fees are required.

miércoles, 25 de marzo de 2020

La barrica de roble como recipiente activo

Una revisión crítica de los conocimientos pasados y presentes

Enoviticultura nº 63 marzo/abril 2020

I. Nevares y M. del Álamo–Sanza


Este trabajo revisa el papel de la barrica de roble como recipiente activo para la maduración del vino. Se presentan referencias destacando aspectos previamente establecidos sobre los procesos que suceden en la barrica y que aún no han sido demostrados. Los nuevos hallazgos recientemente publicados son determinantes para proponer cómo funciona la barrica cuando envejece al vino.
En este trabajo se detallan los principales factores que afectan a la capacidad de intercambio gaseoso de la barrica con el exterior, como son la aparición de depresión en su interior, formación de un espacio de cabeza, efecto de la anatomía de la madera, diferentes vías de entrada de oxígeno, papel de la humedad de la madera y de sus elagitaninos solubles, así como el efecto del tostado de la madera en tonelería. Finalmente, se ofrece una hipótesis sobre el funcionamiento de la barrica como un recipiente activo que determina la interacción vino–barrica

Palabras clave: Barricas, OTR, Oxígeno, Madera de roble, Elagitaninos.

Este trabajo se publicó originalmente en: Maria del Alamo–Sanza & Ignacio Nevares (2017): Oak wine barrel as an active vessel: A critical review of past and current knowledge, Critical Reviews in Food Science and Nutrition, 58:16, 2711–2726, DOI: 10.1080/10408398.2017.1330250, (

martes, 24 de marzo de 2020

Alternative Woods in Enology

Characterization of Tannin and Low Molecular Weight Phenol Compounds with Respect to Traditional Oak Woods. A Review

by Ana Martínez-Gil, Maria del Alamo-Sanza*, Rosario Sánchez-Gómez and Ignacio Nevares*


Wood is one of the most highly valued materials in enology since the chemical composition and sensorial properties of wine change significantly when in contact with it. The need for wood in cooperage and the concern of enologists in their search for new materials to endow their wines with a special personality has generated interest in the use of other Quercus genus materials different from the traditional ones (Q. petraea, Q. robur and Q. alba) and even other wood genera. Thereby, species from same genera such as Q. pyrenaica Willd., Q. faginea Lam., Q. humboldtti Bonpl., Q. oocarpa Liebm., Q. stellata Wangenh, Q. frainetto Ten., Q. lyrata Walt., Q. bicolor Willd. and other genera such as Castanea sativa Mill. (chestnut), Robinia pseudoacacia L. (false acacia), Prunus avium L. and P. cereaus L. (cherry), Fraxinus excelsior L. (European ash) and F. americana L. (American ash) have been studied with the aim of discovering whether they could be a new reservoir of wood for cooperage. This review aims to summarize the characterization of tannin and low molecular weight phenol compositions of these alternative woods for enology in their different cooperage stages and compare them to traditional oak woods, as both are essential to proposing their use in cooperage for aging wine.

sábado, 11 de enero de 2020

Si es posible!! Hemos Construido Barricas con diferente OTR

Customized oxygenation barrels as a new strategy for controlled wine aging

S.Prat-García; I.Nevares; V.Martínez-Martínez y M.del Alamo-Sanza

The process of aging red wines in barrels is a common practice that aims to improve the quality of the wine. Oxygen, together with the compounds released by the oak wood, is responsible for this improvement through interaction with the wine compounds during the process. Wood as a natural product presents a series of highly significant discontinuities in its characteristics, not only between trees of the same species, but even between different areas of the same log. It is not surprising that, despite the homogenization of the characteristics of the wood due to the number of staves in a barrel (around 30 pieces), barrels made from the same batch of wood show very different behavior when aging the same wine. This work presents the results of applying a new way of classifying wood in cooperage by means of image analysis of the staves, based on its anatomical characteristics besides grain and handling of the staves, in order to achieve the production of barrels with a desired oxygen transfer rate (OTR) potential and also with great homogeneity between manufacturing batches. The two batches of barrels built with high and low OTR proved to be very homogeneous and the oxygen dosage of the high OTR barrels was more than twice that of the low OTR barrels, which confirmed the success of the system developed.

El proceso de envejecimiento del vino tinto en barrica es una práctica común que tiene como objetivo mejorar la calidad del vino. El oxígeno, junto con los compuestos liberados por la madera de roble, es el responsable de esta mejora a través de la interacción con los compuestos del vino durante el proceso. La madera como producto natural presenta una serie de discontinuidades muy significativas en sus características, no sólo entre árboles de la misma especie, sino incluso entre diferentes áreas de un mismo tronco. No es de extrañar que, a pesar de la homogeneización de las características de la madera debido al número de duelas en una barrica (alrededor de 30 piezas), las barricas de un mismo lote de madera muestren un comportamiento muy diferente al envejecer un mismo vino. En este trabajo se presentan los resultados de la aplicación de una nueva forma de clasificación de la madera en tonelería mediante el análisis de imagen de las duelas, basada en sus características anatómicas además del grano y manejo de las duelas, con el fin de conseguir una producción de barricas con un potencial de tasa de transferencia de oxígeno (OTR) deseado y también con una gran homogeneidad entre lotes de fabricación. Los dos lotes de barricas construidas con OTR alto y bajo resultaron ser muy homogéneos y la dosificación de oxígeno de las barricas con OTR alto fue más del doble que la de las barricas con OTR bajo, lo que confirmó el éxito del sistema desarrollado.

viernes, 13 de diciembre de 2019

Discrimination of aging wines with alternative oak products and micro-oxygenation by FTIR-ATR

Discriminación de los vinos de crianza con productos alternativos de roble y microoxigenación por FTIR-ATR

R. Sánchez-Gómez; O. Anjos; I. Nevares; T. Delgado y M. Del Alamo-Sanza
Vol. 58 No. 5 (2019): Vitis (Special Issue)   


The use of alternative oak wood products (AOP), such as chips, cubes and staves, among other, from different geographical origins is a common practice for wine aging, where the micro-oxygenation (MOX, adding small doses of oxygen constantly over time) is essential to obtain a final wine more stable in time and with similar characteristics of barrel-aged wine. The aim of this work was to identify if spectroscopic techniques allow to discriminate wines aged with alternative oak products (chips and staves) from different oak woods (American, French and Spanish) and a floating micro-oxygenation (20 µg·L−1) after 10 years of bottling and compared to those aged in barrels. The spectral information and analysis were performed in a FTIR-ATR, with 128 scans per spectrum at a spectral resolution of 8 cm-1 in the wavenumber range from 4,000 to 450 cm-1. Principal component analyses of spectral information were performed using the Unscrambler® X. The results indicate that with this technique it is possible to clearly separate the wines aged by the three systems (chips, staves and barrels) in the case of American oak. In the case of French oak, wines aged in chips were clearly differentiated from wines aged in staves with those aged in barrels between the two. It is also possible to clearly separate aged wines with different Spanish oak systems. The application of FTIR-ATR appears to be a powerful technique for discriminating the quality of wines aged by different AOPs and wood barrels from different geographical origins.


El uso de productos alternativos de la madera de roble (AOP), como astillas, cubos y duelas, entre otros, de diferentes orígenes geográficos, es una práctica común para el envejecimiento del vino, donde la microoxigenación (MOX, añadiendo pequeñas dosis de oxígeno constantemente a lo largo del tiempo) es esencial para obtener un vino final más estable en el tiempo y con características similares al vino envejecido en barrica. El objetivo de este trabajo fue identificar si las técnicas espectroscópicas permiten discriminar los vinos envejecidos con productos alternativos de roble (chips y duelas) de diferentes maderas de roble (americano, francés y español) y una microoxigenación flotante (20 µg-L-1) después de 10 años de embotellado y compararlos con los envejecidos en barricas. La información y el análisis espectral se realizaron en un FTIR-ATR, con 128 escaneos por espectro a una resolución espectral de 8 cm-1 en el rango de número de onda de 4.000 a 450 cm-1. Los principales análisis de los componentes principales de la información espectral se realizaron utilizando el Unscrambler® X. Los resultados indican que con esta técnica es posible separar claramente los vinos envejecidos por los tres sistemas (astillas, duelas y barricas) en el caso del roble americano. En el caso del roble francés, los vinos envejecidos en chips se diferenciaban claramente de los vinos envejecidos en duelas y los envejecidos en barricas entre ambos. También es posible separar claramente los vinos de crianza con diferentes sistemas de roble español. La aplicación de FTIR-ATR parece ser una técnica poderosa para discriminar la calidad de los vinos envejecidos por diferentes AOPs y barricas de madera de diferentes orígenes geográficos.

lunes, 18 de noviembre de 2019

Effect of size, seasoning and toasting level of Quercus pyrenaica Willd. wood on wine phenolic composition during maturation process with micro-oxygenation

Food Research International

Volume 128, February 2020, 108703
a  Department of Analytical Chemistry
b  Department of Agroforestry Engineering

UVaMOX – Universidad de Valladolid, 34004 Palencia, Spain 

Seasoning and toasting treatments carried out in cooperage influence the chemical composition of the oak, and these treatments affect different oak species in different ways. For this reason, numerous studies have focused on the evaluation of both the oak wood materials and the resulting aged wines in order to optimize the different cooperage processes. Seasoning involves immobilizing the wood for long periods of time, leading to an increase in the price of the final product. When using alternative products instead of barrels, in addition to the seasoning and toasting of the wood, the size of the wood pieces is a determining factor in the characteristics of the final wine. Therefore, the objective of this work was to evaluate the polyphenolic composition of the same red wine aged with different alternative products and a small amount of oxygen for 120 days. Specifically, the effect of 2 types of seasoning and 3 types of toasting of chips and staves made from the wood of Q. pyrenaica Willd. was studied. The results showed that the size of the alternative product was the factor that determines the phenolic composition of the wines over the entire ageing process, independent of the seasoning or toasting method carried out on the wood.

jueves, 25 de julio de 2019

Is the grain of French oak wood the key factor of the OTR?

Influence of Quercus petraea Liebl. wood structure on the permeation of oxygen through wine barrel staves

Ignacio Nevares, Maria del Alamo-Sanza, Víctor Martínez-Martínez,  María Menéndez-Miguélez, Jan Van den Bulcke and Joris Van Acker
Wood Research amd Technology. Holzforschung
Published Online: 2019-05-24 | DOI:


The anatomical characteristics of oak wood, which is usually employed for making wine barrels, affect the properties of the wine, because these characteristics are related to the chemical compounds that can be potentially transferred to wine during the aging process. Grain, as the rate of tree growth, is the most commonly employed parameter to define the quality of the oak wood used in cooperage. Nevertheless, oxygen is a key factor in this process and there are few articles that evaluate the oxygen transmission rate (OTR) of the wood employed in cooperage. This work presents the evaluation of the anatomical characteristics of the French oak (Quercus petraea Liebl.) measured with X-ray computed tomography and the OTR of 267 wood samples extracted from recently constructed wine barrels. This study demonstrates that the OTR is dependent on the anatomical features of oak wood, the first step to classify a natural material as wood for custom oxygenation barrel making. OTR cannot be determined from the wood grain or any other single property because it depends on the overall anatomical characteristics of each wood sample, the grain and the average earlywood and latewood width being the three parameters with a stronger correlation with the OTR

martes, 2 de julio de 2019

A novel nondestructive methodology is proposed to make barrels with different levels of OTR

Application of image analysis and artificial neural networks to the prediction in-line of OTR in oak wood planks for cooperage

lunes, 27 de mayo de 2019

Oak in Winemaking Symposium

70th ASEV National Conference

This symposium is designed to explore the impacts of using oak barrels on the quality and composition of wine. The symposium is designed to address the fundamental aspects of coopering, oak chemistry, and barrel aging of wine. Specifically, this symposium will focus on how barrels are made, which types of wood are selected and how new species or genera are being investigated to understand their unique properties, as well as a review of barrel chemistry and its effects on wine composition. The event will include a tour of cooperages due to the close proximity of multiple cooperages in the Napa Valley. A tasting will also be provided highlighting the effects of using oak barrels on red wine composition during primary fermentation and aging.
Symposium Chair: Tom Collins, Washington State University, Tri-Cities


Program is subject to change.
7:15 am – 8:45 am Cooperage Tours:
9:15 am – 10:00 am Speaker To Be Determined
10:00 am – 10:45 am Oak Quality Considerations and Options for American Oak Barrels
Anthony Morris, Canton Cooperage, Kentucky
10:45 am – 11:00 am Break
11:00 am – 11:45 am Impact of Variability in the Toasting Process on Composition of Oak Barrels
Tom Collins, Washington State University, Tri-Cities
11: 45 am – 12:30 pm Barrel Chemistry and Its Effect on Wine and Spirit Composition: Lignin, Cellulose, and Sugars
Jarrad Gollihue, University of Kentucky, Lexington
12:30 pm – 1:30 pm Lunch (on own)
1:30 pm – 2:15 pm How Oak Barrels Can Influence the Taste of Wine: Current Knowledge and Recent Acquisitions
Delphine Winstel, Université de Bordeaux, France
2:15 pm – 3:15 pm Tank or Barrel? The Impact of Fermentation and Aging Red Wine in Stainless Steel Tanks and Oak Barrels
(Tasting of experimental red wines fermented and aged in various combinations of oak barrels and stainless vessels.)
Scott Frost, Washington State University, Tri-Cities
3:15 pm – 3:30 pm Break
3:30 pm – 4:15 pm Recent Advances in Barrel and Oxygen                                                     Ignacio Nevares&María del Alamo                                UVaMOX-Universidad de Valladolid, Spain
4:15 pm – 4:45 pm Q&A and Closing Remarks
Tom Collins, Washington State University, Tri-Cities

martes, 26 de marzo de 2019

UVaMOX en el XVIII Congreso Nacional de Enólogos

XVIII Congreso Nacional de Enólogos


II Encuentro de Enólogos de Iberoamerica

Palencia, Castilla y León, 4-6 de abril de 2019

El próximo 5 de abril, UVaMOX es la encargada de realizar la conferencia inaugural de la mano de su coordinadora. El XVIII Congreso Nacional de Enólogos y el II Encuentro de Enólogos de Iberamérica, reunirá en Palencia a más de 300 expertos de España, Portugal e Iberoamérica para abordar las últimas investigaciones en el ámbito de la vitivinicultura y debatir los retos actuales de la profesión


9.00-9.45: CONFERENCIA INAGURAL: “Gestión del oxígeno en la maduración de vinos. Avances y situación actual”. MARIA DEL ÁLAMO SANZA. (UVa y ACLE)
Programa completo: AQUÍ

miércoles, 27 de febrero de 2019

Latest Research on Oxygen and Wine Barrels (in mostly plain English)

You know oxygen is an important part of the winemaking process, but that doesn’t mean you always know how to manage or control it.


by Deborah Passin


Oxygen can do wonderful things for a wine, aiding in the development of more complex flavors and improving mouthfeel. But oxygen can also be your wine's worst enemy.

Full article here and here

Three Important Questions to Ask


martes, 12 de febrero de 2019

UVaMOX gana el 1er premio Desafío Universidad-Empresa junto con Vega Sicilia

La Consejería de Educación -a través de la Fundación Universidades y Enseñanzas Superiores de Castilla y León (FUESCYL)-, ha publicado la relación de ganadores de la edición de 2018 de los concursos ‘Desafío Universidad–Empresa’ e ‘Iniciativa Campus Emprendedor’, ambos certámenes integrados en el Plan de Transferencia de Conocimiento Universidad–Empresa (Plan TCUE) que impulsa la Junta de Castilla y León a través de la Consejería de Educación

El primer premio de la 6ª edición del concurso Desafio Universidad Empresa ha recaído en la solución presentada por María del Álamo Sanza, del Grupo de Investigación UVaMOX, con sede en la Escuela Técnica Superior de Ingenierías Agrarias del Campus de Palencia de la Universidad de Valladolid, en respuesta a un reto planteado por la empresa Bodegas Vega Sicilia S.A., relativo al control del oxígeno durante el proceso de crianza del vino.

martes, 1 de enero de 2019

Image of O2 dynamics released by oak wood submerged in model wine with nanoparticle sensors

Samanta Prat-Garcíaa, VíctorMartínez-Martíneza, Maria del Alamo-Sanzaa, Bernhard Müllerb, TorstenMayrb and IgnacioNevaresa

Oxidation of wine while in contact with oak wood is a well-known fact and recognized as an important process in wine ageing. The slow and continuous diffusion of oxygen from the oak wood entrapped in its porosity occurs and encourages the reactions usually related with wine aging. In this work, oxygen sensitive particles were used to study the oxygen dynamics from different anatomical regions of the oak wood and simultaneously the oxygen increasement because of the deoxygenation of the wood and the oxygen depletion due to its consumption by the tannins and other compounds released from the wood. To this end, core-shell-type PSPVP nanoparticles stained with Macrolex Fluorescence Yellow and Pt-TFPP were employed as reference and oxygen-sensitive particles respectively. Moreover, a Guppy Pro RGB camera was employed to monitor the particles performing ratiometric oxygen imaging, using the green and red channels to acquire the light emitted from the reference and the oxygen-sensitive particles respectively. Because the volume of nanosensors corresponding to each surface unit is very different from that of the wood region, different exposure times were chosen to obtain the images at each of the times. The results show the wood degassing process during the first minutes of the experiment, the oxygen release from different structural elements of the wood, its consumption by the released compounds from wood and the diffusion of the oxygen through the model wine.