Aug 6, 2009
This new discovery could mean the end for bad wine.
Unpalatable plonk could soon become a thing of the past thanks to new research that has managed to fast-track the aging process necessary to turn astringent young wine into something worth drinking.
This is the latest in a string of developments that promises to provide a short cut to good quality wine. However, unlike it’s predecessors, this technology seems to live up to expectations and has so far passed blind taste tests by wine connoisseurs with flying colours
The accelerated ageing process centres on the exposure of wine to an electrical field. By carefully controlling the time and voltage it’s possible to emulate the chemical reactions that occur during the aging process. Consequently, a bitter, young wine can be transformed into something mellow, full bodied and aromatic in a fraction of the time.
While the exact mechanism that acts to improve the wine during this process is not yet know, it has been found to apply irrespective of the grape variety used, with cabernet sauvignon, merlot and shiraz all having been given the seal of approval.
The research culminates 10 years of research by Chinese chemist Xin An Zeng and his team at the South China University of Technology in Guangzhou and represents a huge development in the wine industry.
Reports suggest that five Chinese wineries have already snapped up the technology in the hope that it will significantly improve their productivity and profits. Should the device live up to expectations it will enable the wineries to produce significantly better wine for less with huge savings being made on storage.
When aged in the traditional manner red wines need to be left to mature for at least 6 months before they become remotely palatable, with the best reds aged for over 20 years before they’re considered ready.
Considering Zeng’s technology manages to bring the best out of a wine after just 3 minutes of exposure to an electric field the implications for the wine industry are tremendous. For wine drinkers it’s likely to mean that good wine will become a lot more affordable to the masses, with cheap, nasty wine becoming a thing of the past.
While Zeng has acknowledged that developing the accelerated wine ageing equipment so it can be used by the public would be a gold mine, he has not yet embarked on this venture. However, tempting as it may be to do some research yourself in the mean time, until he manages to shrink his technology into pocket-sized format it’s probably best not to try this at home!!