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Creation and Acceptability of a Fragrance with a Characteristic Tawny Port Wine-Like Aroma.

  • Vilela, Alice1
  • Ferreira, Rita2
  • Nunes, Fernando3
  • Correia, Elisete4
  • 1 Chemistry Research Centre (CQ-VR), Department of Biology and Environment, School of Life Sciences and Environment, University of Trás-os-Montes and Alto Douro, P-5000-801 Vila Real, Portugal. , (Portugal)
  • 2 Enology and Viticulture Student Master, Department of Biology and Environment, University of Trás-os-Montes e Alto Douro, P-5000-801 Vila Real, Portugal. , (Portugal)
  • 3 Chemistry Research Centre (CQ-VR), Department of Chemistry, University of Trás-os-Montes e Alto Douro, P-5000-801 Vila Real, Portugal. , (Portugal)
  • 4 Center for Computational and Stochastic Mathematics (CEMAT), Department of Mathematics, IST-UL, Av. Rovisco Pais 1, 1049-001 Lisboa, Portugal. , (Portugal)
Published Article
Publication Date
Sep 06, 2020
DOI: 10.3390/foods9091244
PMID: 32899920


Port wine, the ultimate expression of the Demarcated Douro Region's (DDR's) history, cultural heritage experience, and art, was born on the slopes of the Douro river valley. One of the categories of port wine that is much appreciated by consumers is tawny port wine. This category of wine is aged in oak barrels and is characterized by oxidative aromas. Thus, the objective of the present work was to develop a tawny port wine-like fragrance, the first according to the literature. First, a group of 50 consumers in an informal environment and using two samples of tawny port wine (13 and over 40 years of aging in wood, respectively) was asked about the pleasantness of the aromas and the possible use of a tawny port wine-like fragrance. More than 80% of the group stated that they would use the fragrance as an air freshener (scent marketing in restaurants) or even in personal-use products. Then, a sensory panel of 12 participants (3 men and 9 women) was trained, and using tawny port wines of various brands and ages, the panel selected six descriptors to aromatically describe this type of wine. For the descriptors, seven aromatic chemical compounds were appointed and fragrances were developed with contributions from the panel. After several sessions with the sensory panel, three fragrances were selected, created with only three of the aromatic compounds initially used: benzaldehyde, sotolon, and vanillin. Afterward, the levels of consumer acceptability (150 individuals) for the three developed fragrances were studied and the optimization of their sensory characteristics was evaluated using a "just about right" (JAR) scale. It was found that male individuals assigned higher ratings and preferred fragrance 5.1, which was a statistically significant result (p < 0.001). Regarding age, Tukey's test showed significant differences in responses to fragrance 5.3 between young adults and middle-aged adults (p = 0.018). Young adults gave higher scores for this fragrance. Additionally, consumers considered that the intensity of the tawny port wine aroma was ideal in the three fragrances, however, the fragrance color was not very intense. The use of the three compounds (benzaldehyde, sotolon, and vanillin) seems to be enough to obtain a tawny port wine-like fragrance.

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