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Volatile compound profile conferred to tequila beverage by maturation in recycled and regenerated white oak barrels from Quercus alba

Aguilar-Méndez, Osvaldo, López-Álvarez, José Arnoldo, Díaz-Pérez, Alma Laura, Altamirano, Josue, Reyes De la Cruz, Homero, Rutiaga-Quiñones, José Guadalupe, Campos-García, Jesús
European food research & technology 2017 v.243 no.12 pp. 2073-2082
Quercus alba, beverages, color, flavor, food research, gas chromatography-mass spectrometry, liquid-liquid extraction, oak barrels, odors, principal component analysis, silver, trees, volatile organic compounds, wood
The main goal of the ageing process of tequila is to improve its organoleptic properties. This process is mainly performed in white oak barrels from trees of the Quercus species, whose wood confers a wide variety of aromas, flavors, and colors to the beverage, providing the desirable organoleptic character to this beverage. In this work, the effects of tequila maturation in recycled and regenerated oak barrels were evaluated by determining minor volatile compounds (VOCs) obtained by microdistillation of the liquid–liquid extraction of tequila samples. GC–MS analysis shows that in silver, aged, and extra-aged tequila types, ~62 VOCs were identified. The principal component analysis of VOC content for each type of tequila showed that they could be classified as four patterns (α, β, γ, and δ groups), proposed to establish their VOC content associated with the maturation process in recycled and regenerated oak barrels from Quercus alba. The α group, constituted by 21 VOCs, did not show significant differences in the concentration of compounds between the silver, aged, and extra-aged types of tequila, β group, constituted by 16 VOCs, which decreased or went missing by maturation process of silver tequila, the γ and δ groups, constituted by 15 and 10 VOCs, correlate with aged and extra-aged tequila, respectively. Findings indicate that the γ and δ groups are associated with the maturation process of tequila, suggesting that recycled and regenerated oak barrels of Q. alba is a procedure suitable for ageing of tequila, providing important VOC content to the beverage.