The organoleptic benefits of adding oak alternatives to wine can vary based on the botanical source of the wood, fragment size, toasting intensity, and treatment received. Not all wines age in the same way when treated with oak fragments.
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Not all wines will evolve in the same way after treatment with wood chips.
Natural fragments are characterized by their antioxidant properties and contribute to color stabilization in red and rosé wines, mainly by providing ellagic tannin. They also contribute to the structure of the wine by increasing the volume in the mouth, providing sweetness from the polysaccharides in the wood and contributing to the preservation of varietal characteristics by absorbing volatile compounds from the environment that transmit undesirable aromas to the wine.
The heat treatment of wood allows the reduction of certain compounds and the appearance of new ones, depending on the roasting temperature. For medium roastings, the main aromas contributed by wood are those produced by eugenol (clove, pepper, cinnamon aromas) and the cis and trans isomers of whiskylactones (coconut, coconut, vanilla). However, in intense roasts, the predominant compounds are those produced by thermal degradation of cellulose and hemicellulose such as furanic aldehydes (caramel, smoke, toast, butter). Vanilla flavors are also appreciated, but this time produced by vanillin, a low molecular weight polyphenol originating from the thermal degradation of lignin.
SPIRIT is a range of oak alternatives of different botanical origins, different toast formats, which allows to modulate and increase the complexity of the wines.