Davide SLAGHEANUFI1, Giovanni LUZZINI1,Marangon Matteo2, Mattivi, Fulvio3, Moio, Luigi4, Versari Andrea5, Luca, ROLLE6
Maurizio, UGLIANO,
1 University of Verona
2 University of Padua
3 University of Trento
4 University of Naples ‘Federico II’
5 University of Bologna
6 University of Turin

Email contact:  davide.slaghenaufi[@]univr.it

AIM: Terpene compounds are associated with floral notes and are characteristic of aromatic grape varieties such as Muscat (Jackson, 2008). They are generally considered to potentially contribute to the aroma of white wines. However, there is a growing interest towards the potential contribution of terpene compounds to the aroma of red wines.  

The aim of this work was to investigate the occurrence of different terpenes in red wines from Italian varieties.

METHODS: For this study wines from 11 mono-varietal Italian red wines from 12 regions were used (19 Sangiovese, 11 Nebbiolo, 10 Aglianico, 11 Primitivo, 10 Raboso del Piave, 9 Cannonau, 11 Teroldego, 3 Nerello, 9 Montepulciano, 7 Corvina). All samples were from vintage 2016 and none of them had been in contact with wood. A total of 19 terpenes and 7 norisoprenoids were analysed by mean of SPME-GC-MS analysis using a DVB-CAR-PDMS fiber. The wines were collected in the framework of the activities of the D-Wines (Diversity of Italian wines) project.

RESULTS: Significant differences among varieties were observed for basically all the compounds analyzed with the exception of limonene. Overall, the concentrations of the various terpenes remained in the same order of magnitude. However, some differences are noticeable between varieties. Corvina was characterized by higher level of linalool, followed by Aglianico, Nebbiolo, Primitivo and Sangiovese. Cyclic terpenoids appeared as good varietal markers, for instances Montepulciano was characterized by 1,4-cineole and 1,8-cineole, whereas Sangiovese showed higher levels of p-cymene, α-terpinene and 1,4-cineole. Higher terpinene-1-ol content was characteristic of  Montepulciano and Raboso wines. Relatively high levels of the norisoprenoid β-damascenone were found in Cannonau up to 3.68 µg/L.

CONCLUSIONS: This study provide the first survey of a large number of terpenoids and norisoprenoids in different mono-varietal Italian red wines. The results showed that a large number of terpenoids were present in Italian red wines with specific profiles related to the varieties.



Jackson, R.S. (2008). Chapter 6 Chemical constituents of grapes and wine. Wine science (3rd ed.), Elsevier.

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