Fermentation-derived volatile sulfur compounds (VSCs) are undesirable in wine and are often remediated in a process known as copper fining. In the present study, the addition of Cu(II) to model and real wine systems containing hydrogen sulfide (H2S) and thiols provided evidence for the generation of disulfides (disulfanes) and organic polysulfanes. Cu(II) fining of a white wine spiked with glutathione, H2S, and methanethiol (MeSH) resulted in the generation of MeSH-glutathione disulfide and trisulfane. In the present study, the mechanisms underlying the interaction of H2S and thiols with Cu(II) is discussed, and a prospective diagnostic test for releasing volatile sulfur compounds from their nonvolatile forms in wine is investigated. This test utilized a combination of reducing agents, metal chelators, and low-oxygen conditions to promote the release of H2S and MeSH, at levels above their reported sensory thresholds, from red and white wines that were otherwise free of sulfidic off-odors at the time of addition.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)