Daily Archives: June 28, 2009

Pull back on the reins

82840004Phenols are a class of chemical compounds commonly found in wine (and chili peppers, cannabis, raspberries and wintergreen to name just a few).  In wine they can bestow pleasant aromas like vanilla, wood, cloves, carnations or animal smells such as horse. 

Now you may enjoy a little horse leather in your glass, but probably not horse manure.  4-ethyl-phenol is the compound responsible for this horseplay and there’s 4 times more it found in red wines than in white.  It shows up more often if the grapes have been macerated without any oxygen before the fermentation process.  Continue reading

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