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Mosh Valley

Controlling sweet wines with FTIR

Mosh Valley
Dr. Loosen from the Mosel Valley explains how the OenoFoss analyser adds value as a faster and more convenient alternative to testing at an external laboratory.

The Mosel valley in Germany is known for the many high quality fruity wines with a relatively high level of residual sugar. “Around 80% of our wines have residual sugar,” says winemaker Thomas Loosen. “The Riesling produced here on the Mosel has quite high acidity and so it is a tradition here to produce wines with natural sweetness. It was a challenge to get this fixed on the OenoFoss, to analyse these high sugar contents. But it works really well.”

Loosen explains how the rapid analysis with the Fourier Transform Infrared (FTIR) analyser complements the tasting of the first wines in January and February. The wines are tasted and when the first ideas about how to use the wines start to form, for a special cuvee for example, the OenoFoss is used to give a rapid analysis of sugar and acidity level. “We have the instrument by the side of our tasting room and we have the figure within two minutes. Then we can go on with our planning,” says Loosen.

OenoFoss

The OenoFoss™ analyser


The alcohol level is also useful for bottling and labeling purposes as a faster and more convenient alternative to testing at an external laboratory. This on-the-spot aspect of testing with FTIR also pays off when blending of tanks and barrels is involved by making the winemaking process much faster and more dynamic. Barrels can be tested individually and on-the-fly to check ideas pre- blending. Before, they had to do the blend first and then wait one or two days to get a result.  

Loosen concludes by explaining how the actual cost of testing with FTIR is quite low because once the initial investment is made, winemakers can test and test again at no additional cost.

Dr. Loosen is a world-renowned wine estate in Germany, producing distinctive, highly acclaimed Rieslings from the steep, slate-soil vineyards of the Mosel. 

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