Terpene evolution during the development of Vitis vinifera L. cv. Shiraz grapes


The flavour of wine is derived, in part, from the flavour compounds present in the grape, which change as the grapes accumulate sugar and ripen. Grape berry terpene concentrations may vary at different stages of berry development. This study aimed to investigate terpene evolution in grape berries from four weeks post-flowering to maturity. Grape bunches were sampled at fortnightly intervals over two vintages (2012-13 and 2013-14). In total, five monoterpenoids, 24 sesquiterpenes, and four norisoprenoids were detected in grape samples. The highest concentrations of total monoterpenoids, total sesquiterpenes, and total norisoprenoids in grapes were all observed at pre-veraison. Terpenes derived from the same biosynthetic pathway had a similar production pattern during berry development. Terpenes in grapes at harvest might not necessarily be synthesised at post-veraison, since the compounds or their precursors may already exist in grapes at pre-veraison, with the veraison to harvest period functioning to convert these precursors into final products.

Publication Title

Food Chemistry