Research concludes glass best for preserving wine

(PresseBox) (Düssseldorf, ) The Bordeaux Institute of Oenology studied the storage of wine in a 18.7cl bottle known as a "quarter bottle" or "snipe", to find out whether lighter substitute materials such as PVC or PET were just as suitable.

The study focused on airline companies, which are particularly interested in packaging weights, but was aimed at all O-I's customers and partners.

Four series of comparisons were carried out
· AOC Bordeaux red wine in bottles made from glass, PVC, PET
· AOC Bordeaux white wine in bottles made from glass, PVC, PET
· AOC Graves white wine in bottles made from glass and PET
· Synthetic solution in bottles made from glass, PVC, PET

Methods used
The different bottles used were filled under standard conditions and then sorted normally. For each test, several hundred samples were taken randomly from the boxed products. After the samples were taken, the bottles were stored at various temperatures for a period of six months, upright in their boxes and in the dark. Blind tasting comparisons were later carried out on samples laid out randomly. The jury was made up of 19 people, all of them trained tasters. All the tests were carried out at 11am, using AFNOR-manufactured glasses at a temperature of 19°C, in a tasting room itself kept at 19°C, and with no communication between the participants.

Results
· The AOC Bordeaux red wine stored in PVC and PET bottles suffered a rapid loss of CO2, a very fast drop in free SO2 and a rise in ferric iron.
The colour of the wine stored in PVC and PET altered fairly quickly. The flavour and bouquet changed gradually over time, to the point of becoming noticeable, and the wine was rejected by virtually all the tasters.
The wine stored in glass bottles underwent almost no such variations.

· The AOC Bordeaux white wine stored in PVC and PET bottles suffered a loss of CO2, a very fast reduction in free SO2 and overall SO2, whilst the ethanol content increased slightly. Free SO2 practically disappeared within three months. The changes very quickly became noticeable and the tasters unanimously rejected the wine.
For the wine stored in glass bottles, there were almost no variations and the wine's flavour and bouquet remained stable.

· The Graves white wine stored in PVC and PET did not have a sufficiently high CO2 content for it to be able to vary. The ethanol content increased slightly and the free SO2 and overall SO2 dropped quickly. The wine's free SO2 content fell to almost zero in under three months. The flavour and bouquet deteriorated to such an extent that the tasters were able to discern it simply by smelling the wine.
Meanwhile, the wine stored in glass bottles suffered only very slight variations and no change in the wine.

The conclusion: glass is, without doubt, the most suitable material for packaging and storing wine, even in spite of the format size tested here.

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