What is PhenoLAB?

PhenoLAB is an online platform used for efficient, reliable and fast phenolic analysis.

What can I use PhenoLAB for?

PhenoLAB can be used for the generation of phenolic information, as well as for the interpretation and understanding of the phenolic content.

What can be measured in PhenoLAB?

PhenoLAB can measure the phenol content of grapes, of must during the fermentation process, as well as in finished wines during the aging process.

How does PhenoLAB measure phenolics?

PhenoLAB makes use of UV-Visible spectroscopy calibrations which are optimised for South African red wines. The quantification is obtained after measuring a few spectral features. The final concentration is obtained using optimised algorithms for quantification of phenolic content.

What is the meaning of the phenolic information provided?

The total phenolic content indicates the overall phenolic content. This parameter includes phenolic acids, flavanols, tannins, and anthocyanins. Tannins can represent 60-90% of the total phenolic content of a red wine. The total tannin content is obtained with the methylcellulose precipitable (MCP) tannins assay. This precipitation-based method is positively correlated with astringency ratings. The total content of anthocyanins is important for colour properties and colour stability of wines. Colour stability is assessed with polymeric pigments which indicate the amount of longer term, stable anthocyanin molecules. The colour density measurement provides the colour intensity properties of a wine.

What do I need to use PhenoLAB?

To measure ultraviolet and visible regions, a spectrophotometer is needed as well as measuring pipettes, test tubes, 1M hydrochloric acid, and a centrifuge. For grape samples, a high speed homogeniser, pH meter, 96% ethanol, and a scale need to be added to the above-mentioned requirements.

I don’t have laboratory facilities. Can I still use PhenoLAB?

Yes, you can. Samples can be sent to Vinlab where the spectral information will be generated and uploaded onto your user profile for further interpretation. This facility is available as a PhenoLAB user. If you are an Independent User and wish to switch over, please send us an email for this request and we will process accordingly.

How can PhenoLAB help me to interpret the phenolic information?

PhenoLAB incorporates some plotting functionalities in the forms of trend, bar or spider charts. In addition, a database with the data generated will provide for useful comparison with existing data from other cultivars, vintages or regions.

What does the PhenoLAB database provide me?

The PhenoLAB database contains the phenolic levels of the samples measured during the last few years by the PhenoLAB team and those generated by the users. The users are required to include cultivar, vintage and region meta data. This information is later used to compare your measured samples against an average value of a specific selection specified by the user (E.G. average values of Merlot wines measured in 2018 from the Paarl region).

How is my data protected?

PhenoLAB only uses information regarding the cultivar, the vintage and the region. The other PhenoLAB and database users will never have access to the origin of the data. PhenoLAB does not reveal, under any circumstances, the origin of the data. This is strictly confidential.

How can PhenoLab help me in my winemaking process?

PhenoLAB is a platform that helps winemakers and viticulturists make informed decisions. Phenolic ripeness of grapes, defining fermentation strategies based on the grapes’ phenolic profile, monitoring fermentation and aging processes, defining winemaking and aging conditions, benchmarking and blending will all be better assessed with the information generated by PhenoLAB.