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alcohol content

alcoholic strength, content (GB)
gradazione alcolica (I)
teor alcoólico (PO)
graduación alcohólica (ES)
teneur en alcool, degré alcoolique (F)

The content of alcohol in wine refers to the share ethanol; the main existing alcohol. The possible or theoretically achievable alcohol content of a wine can already in the grapes by the Mostgewicht be calculated. He follows from the sugar (Fructose and glucose) in the must, which in the fermentation in alcohol and carbon dioxide is converted. In the 19th century, the French chemist Joseph Gay-Lussac (1778-1850) developed a system that represents the degree of alcohol in degrees (°), which is still used in Anglo-American countries. Today, international standard and standardized within the EU, however, is the indication in volume, The measurement takes place at a temperature of 20 ° Celsius.

definition of Terms

There are four different terms for the alcohol content. Above all, there is interest in how much alcohol is actually contained in the drink. In most countries is on label the existing alcohol content is given:

Existing alcohol content : Pure alcohol actually contained in must or wine.

Potential alcoholic strength: theoretical proportion resulting from complete fermentation of the residual sugar additionally possible. In Italy, this value is often determined by the actual alcoholic strength in the form of z. B. "14% vol + 4" indicated. This means in the specific case a residual sugar of the equivalent of 4% alcohol, that is about 65 g (1% alcohol corresponds to 16 to 17 g of sugar).

Total alcohol content : Sum of existing and potential alcohol content.

Natural Alcohol Content : Total Alcohol Content Before Any enrich,

As a rule of thumb, during fermentation, 10 grams of sugar per 1,000 grams of must yield 0.66% volume of alcohol. A content of 8 grams of alcohol per liter corresponds to around 1 ° or 1% vol. The conversion formula is% vol x 7.894 = grams of alcohol per liter (g / l) of wine. At 12% vol, this gives 94.7 g / l. In a bottle of wine with 0.75 liters are the 71 g of pure alcohol. One-eighth of wine contains approximately the same amount of grams of alcohol as this percent by volume. This means that one eighth wine with 12% vol alcohol content contains 12 g alcohol. A simple method for determining the alcohol content is the Rebelein method,

Device of Dr. med. Rebelein for the determination of the alcohol content

health aspects

How high is the alcohol level when drinking a bottle of 0.75 liter wine with an alcohol content of 12% vol? That also depends on the physical condition, the drinking speed, the sex and other factors. Calculated over the thumb, this "three quarters wine" results in a man with a weight of around 85 kg and a drinking period of two hours gross 1.2 per mille (see formula under Blood Alcohol Concentration ). Regarding the acceptable consumption, see below health,

alcoholic drinks

The specified alcohol strengths are to be understood as approximate guide values. For all alcoholic beverages, there are sometimes different legal requirements in the countries with regard to minimum and often maximum values (see keywords below, for example cognac and in the countries):



alcohol-free beer 0.0 to 0.5
light beer 2.0 to 3.2
beer (top-fermented beer, Altbier, Kölsch) 4.5 to 5.4
Strong beer (bock beer) 5 to 12
Wine - light until 11
Wine - medium heavy to 13
Wine - heavy over 13
sparkling wine - Cava. sparkling wine. champagne Etc. 9 to 13
fortified Wines - Malaga. port wine. sherry Etc. 15 to 19
brandy - Armagnac. cognac. Lourinhã. Metaxa Etc. 36 to 45
liqueur 11 to 55
rum 38 to 80

The "right" alcohol content positively influences the taste. Lots flavorings are soluble in alcohol. Too alcoholic wines lose the balance and can alcoholic or. gangrenous Act. They work less gossamery because the aromas are bound to the alcohol. Also suffers from the varietal, On the other hand alcohol is concealed acids, A phenomenon is that one dry matured wine with low residual sugar and high alcohol content quite relative sweet can taste.

Wines with high alcohol content have more body (Fullness), less alcohol underlines the elegance, Wines with (too) low alcohol content often taste characterless and hollow (empty). When called "sweet spot" degree, the wine reaches a perfect as possible harmony between Aroma. fruitiness and taste, For (too) alcoholic wines, this harmony can be achieved through the process alcohol reduction be achieved.

wine regulations

According to EU Regulation is the existing alcohol content on label in volume percentages by full or half units, rounded if necessary. The specified value may deviate from the content determined by the analysis by no more than 0.5% vol. For wines with indication of the harvest year, over three years bottle storage, sparkling wines. sparkling wines. liqueur wines and wines from overripe grapes, the declared alcoholic strength may differ from the analysis by a maximum of 0,8% vol. The value should be followed by the symbol "% vol"; this number may be preceded by the words "existing alcoholic strength" or "existing alcohol" or the abbreviation "alc."

Furthermore, there are requirements for minimum alcohol content ever growing zone, For A and B since 2009 this is as follows: For wine (formerly table wine) at least 6.5% (equivalent to 11.2 KMW, which can be read) plus max. possible enrichment of 2% results in 8.5% for the finished wine. At least 9% apply to all other wine-growing zones. The specifications for country wine. quality wine and Prädikatswein but may be regulated by the countries themselves and are therefore (also depending on the growing area) very different. See the regulations under the countries.

In compliance with country-specific regulations may also be a enrich with certain sugar-containing agents to increase the natural alcohol content. The addition of alcohol to the finished wine is called Spriten, The alcohol content can be determined by various methods; see below analytical test, A complete list of all wine ingredients is under total extract contain.

Additional information

All aids, works and measures in the vineyard during the growth cycle one finds below Weingarten Care, Complete listings of the numerous cellar techniques, as well as a list of the wine-regulated wine, sparkling wine and distillate types are under the keyword winemaking contain. Comprehensive information on wine law is available under the keyword wine law,

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