Multivariate statistical modeling was used to identify significant correlations between several chemical constituents and physical properties of wine and its perceived body or viscous mouthfeel. Seventeen white wines that span an anecdotal range of perceived viscous mouthfeel, including Chardonnay, Viognier, Pinot gris, Riesling and Sauvignon blanc, were assessed using a descriptive analysis technique to determine quantitative ratings of viscous mouthfeel. These wines were also submitted to a wide range of chemical constituents and physical property analyses, including viscosity, density and concentrations of ethanol, total phenolics, organic acids (lactate, citrate, tartrate, malate, succinate), glycerol, sugars (fructose and glucose), total extract, and several inorganic anions and cations. The multivariate statistical model shows that the viscous mouthfeel of these white wines is significantly correlated with physical properties, such as viscosity and osmotic potential, chemical properties, such as lactate and total extract. This work is also consistent with previously published results from other researchers indicating that ethanol and glycerol do not significantly contribute to viscous mouthfeel. This research provides evidence that panelists can differentiate the mouthfeel of wines that span a relatively narrow range of viscosities. The results were also correlated with various chemical and physical properties of wine. Sensory and analytical measurements such as these could provide a link from viscous mouthfeel to viticultural and winemaking practices of wine. (We recommend that you consult the full text of this article).

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