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Oral Wine Texture Perception and Its Correlation with Instrumental Texture Features of Wine-Saliva Mixtures

Laguna, Laura, Álvarez, María Dolores, Simone, Elena, Moreno-Arribas, Maria Victoria, Bartolomé, Begoña
Foods 2019 v.8 no.6
astringency, ethanol, glycerol, liquids, proteins, saliva, sensation, tannins, texture, uncertainty, viscosity, wines
Unlike solid food, texture descriptors in liquid food are scarce, and they are frequently reduced to the term viscosity. However, in wines, apart from viscosity, terms, such as astringency, body, unctuosity and density, help describe their texture, relating the complexity and balance among their chemical components. Yet there is uncertainty about which wine components (and their combinations) cause each texture sensation and if their instrumental assessment is possible. Therefore, the aim of the present work was to study the effect of wine texture on its main components, when interacting with saliva. This was completed by using instrumental measurements of density and viscosity, and by using two types of panels (trained and expert). For that, six different model-wine formulations were prepared by adding one or multiple wine components: ethanol, mannoproteins, glycerol, and tannins to a de-alcoholised wine. All formulations were mixed with fresh human saliva (1:1), and their density and rheological properties were measured. Although there were no statistical differences, body perception was higher for samples with glycerol and/or mannoproteins, this was also correlated with density instrumental measurements (R = 0.971, p = 0.029). The viscosity of samples with tannins was the highest due to the formation of complexes between the model-wine and salivary proteins. This also provided astringency, therefore correlating viscosity and astringency feelings (R = 0.855, p = 0.030). No correlation was found between viscosity and body perception because of the overlapping of the phenolic components. Overall, the present results reveal saliva as a key factor when studying the wine texture through instrumental measurements (density and viscosity).