The impact of micro-oxygenation (MOX) in conjunction with a variety of oak alternatives on phenolic composition and red wine aging was investigated and compared with traditional barrel aging. Although several studies concluded that MOX give similar results to barrel aging, few have compared them directly and none directly compared MOX with and without wood alternatives and barrel aging. Results confirmed that MOX had a positive effect on colour density, even after 5 months of bottle aging. This is supported by an increase in polymeric phenol and pigment content not only with aging but in the MOX compared to barrel matured wine treatments. Descriptive analysis showed that MOX in combination with wood alternatives such as oak chips and staves could mimic short term (six months) barrel aging in new American and French oak barrels in regards to sensory characteristics.
Keywords: Micro-oxygenation; Oak barrels; Polymeric phenols; Polymeric pigments; Wood alternatives.
Published by Elsevier Ltd.