The production of low-alcohol wines by aerobic yeasts

Huseyin Erten, Iain Campbell

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    81 Citations (Scopus)


    Aerobic yeasts of the genera Pichia and Williopis are commonly regarded as spoilage yeasts of beer and wine by causing turbidity, a surface film of yeast growth and often an excessive estery flavour. However, their ability to utilise sugars oxidatively for cell growth with the production of estery and other flavours of wine with only minimal production of ethanol suggests a method for the production of low-alcohol wines of pleasant "fermented" flavour without the need for additional equipment to remove alcohol by dialysis, reverse osmosis or distillation, or without the excessive sweetness remaining from arrested fermentation. Three strains of Pichia and one of Williopsis were examined for their ability to produce approximately 3%(v/v) ethanol and a good estery and fruity flavour. With normal anaerobic fermentation conditions, or with gentle stirring to prevent formation of a surface film, excessive amounts of alcohol were produced from grape juice of 15% or 20% (w/v) initial sugar concentration. However, an acceptably flavoured wine of alcohol content < 3% was produced by agitation and aeration during fermentation. The ethanol formed in the early stages of culture was oxidised to a final level < 3%, with the production of cell mass and an acceptable flavour.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)207-215
    Number of pages9
    JournalJournal of the Institute of Brewing
    Issue number4
    Publication statusPublished - 2001


    • Aerobic yeasts
    • Low alcohol wine
    • Pichia
    • Williopsis


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