Laboratory for Flavour Analysis and Enology (LAAE-Rioja)

Group members: 
Purificación Fernández Zurbano: 
Associated Professor
Marta Dizy Soto: 
Associated Professor
María-Pilar Sáenz-Navajas: 
Researcher "Ramón y Cajal" Program
Sara Ferrero del Teso: 
PhD student
Marivel González: 
Shu Yan Lui: 
PhD student
Ernesto Franco Luesma: 
Assistant Professor
Alejandro Suárez de Diego: 
Master student

Our main research interest is to understand the chemical basis of flavour, especially in the wine industry. This main line of research is carried out in collaboration with the associated Unit to ICVV: Laboratory for Flavor Analysis and Enology (LAAE) at Universidad de Zaragoza. This is approached following a multidisciplinary strategy combining flavour chemistry, psychophysics and cognitive psychology that is tackled in the framework of specific sublines of research:


• Elucidation of the chemical basis of taste and chemesthesic sensations
• Understanding sensory interactions (e.g., aroma-taste, aroma-astringency, taste-astringency)
• Evaluation of the potential and phenolic quality of grapes
• Modeling/optimization of wine aging


The know-how acquired over more than 30 years allow us to offer an integrated analytical service for the most relevant sensory-active components of wine flavor:

Research and advice on wine flavor

- Sensory analysis. Characterization of wine flavour
- Identification and characterization of off-flavours  
- Production of aroma and taste references for the training and control of sensory panels
- Advice on the accreditation of panels for sensory evaluation

Analytical service for the analysis of sensory-actives compounds:

Varietal aromas: Thiols, terpenes
Fermentative aromas: Esters, alcohols, acids
Wood-derived aromas: Lactones, vanillins, phenols
Aroma Precursors: Glycosidic and cysteinyl precursors
Oxidation and reduction aromas: Aldehydes, DMS, mercaptans
Other off-odours: TCA, Brett
Polyphenols: Antocyanins, flavanols and tannins, tannin activity

Recent and relevant references:

Ferrero-del-Teso, S., Suárez, A., Jeffery, D.W., Ferreira, V., Fernández-Zurbano, P., Sáenz-Navajas, M.-P. Sensory variability associated with anthocyanic and tannic fractions isolated from red wines. (2020) Food Research International, 136, 109340. 

Sáenz-Navajas, M.-P., Ferrero-del-Teso, S., Jeffery, D.W., Ferreira, V., Fernández-Zurbano, P. Effect of aroma perception on taste and mouthfeel dimensions of red wines: Correlation of sensory and chemical measurements. (2020) Food Research International, 131, 108945.

Ferrero-del-Teso, S., Arias, I., Escudero, A., Ferreira, V., Fernández-Zurbano, P., Sáenz-Navajas, M.-P. Effect of grape maturity on wine sensory and chemical features: The case of Moristel wines (2020) LWT, 118, 108848. 

Sáenz-Navajas, M.P., Ferrero-Del-Teso, S., Romero, M., Pascual, D., Diaz, D., Ferreira, V., Fernández-Zurbano, P. Modelling wine astringency from its chemical composition using machine learning algorithms. (2019) Oeno One, 53 (3), 499-509. 

Bueno, M., Marrufo Curtido, A., Carrascón Díaz, V.,Fernández Zurbano, Escudero, A, Ferreira, V. Formation and Accumulation of Acetaldehyde and Strecker Aldehydes during Red Wine Oxidation. Frontiers. 2018. 6/20, 1 – 19.

Sáenz-Navajas, M.-P., Arias, I., Ferrero-del-Teso, S., Fernández-Zurbano, P., Escudero, A., Ferreira, V. Chemo-sensory approach for the identification of chemical compounds driving green character in red wines. (2018) Food Research International, 109, 138-148. 

Carrascón, V., Vallverdú-Queralt, A., Meudec, E., Sommerer, N., Fernandez-Zurbano, P., Ferreira, V. The kinetics of oxygen and SO2 consumption by red wines. What do they tell about oxidation mechanisms and about changes in wine composition? (2018) Food Chemistry, 241, 206-214. 

Sáenz-Navajas, M.-P., Avizcuri, J.-M., Ferrero-del-Teso, S., Valentin, D., Ferreira, V., Fernández-Zurbano, P. Chemo-sensory characterization of fractions driving different mouthfeel properties in red wines. (2017) Food Research International, 94, 54-64.