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- Ethanol, also known as ethyl alcohol, is by far the main alcohol found in wines and hence refered to as just alcohol (see diagram).
- Ethanol is produced from grape sugars or added sugars, that are converted to ethanol by yeast during alcoholic fermentation.
- Ethanol is a colourless liquid that has no taste and virtually no flavour, however, ethanol does create a sweet sensation in the mouth and adds body to wine due to its viscosity which is greater than water.
- At high concentrations, ethanol produces a feeling of heat in the mouth that can almost be painful at the extreme end of the spectrum.
- Ethanol has a specific gravity of 0.7936 at 15.56oC and a boiling point of 78.37oC.
- An increase in temperature, will make ethanol more evident in a wine.
- The converse is also true, with wineries serving fortified Muscat wines straight out of the freezer, as a summer drink, in a similar way that Schnapps can be served from the freezer to reduce the hot sensation of alcohol.