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Monitoring the Tawny Port wine aging process using precision enology

Fernanda Cosme | University of Trás-os-Montes and Alto Douro, Portugal

Monitoring the Tawny Port wine aging process using precision enology

Tawny Port wine is produced in the Douro Demarcated Region by blending several fortified wines in different aging stages. During the aging process in small wood barrels, the red wine color progressively develops into tawny, medium tawny, or light tawny. In this Port wine style, there are some special categories like Tawny Reserve, Tawny with Indication of Age (10, 20, 30, and 40 years), and “Colheita” that are commercialized worldwide. This last category is an exception, as these wines are from a single vintage. In Tawny Port wine the oxidative aging process is multifactorial and critical for reaching the required quality. So, real-time monitoring of important intrinsic and extrinsic factors known to impact both wine quality and aging time are important to optimize and to manage the natural inconsistency among wines aged in diverse long-used wood barrels.

This work shows the design, development, and implementation of a remote distributed system to monitor factors that are identified to be critical for the Tawny Port wine aging process. Was the distributed monitoring system capable of detecting variations among barrels and among both storage conditions: controlled and room temperature? Was it redox potential or dissolved oxygen that showed higher variances in different conditions? Find out how this methodology based on easy-to-use implanted systems can contribute to precision enology.

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Published on 05/25/2023
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