Micro oxygenation

Calculation of flows for micro oxygenation The OxBox You are here Turn your tanks into barrels
Micro oxygenation cannot cure all problems
Micro oxygenation can help improve wines, especially when used in combination with toasted oak:
    1. Stabilizes color.
2. Allows control of O2 supplied to the wine.
3. Builds middle body.
  4. Minimizes vegetal character.
  5. Puts a wine into balance.
  6. Corrects slight sulfide problems.
  7. Reduces dependence on barrels for flavor and aging.

Many winemakers are searching for successful methods to minimize vegetal aromas and flavor characters in their wines. The combined use of toasted oak and micro oxygenation does appear to minimize vegetal characters.

  Vegetal characters appear to be due to the combination of three primary components: 1) isobutyl methoxy pyrazine and related compounds (e.g. bell pepper aromas): 2) cis-3-hexenol and related compounds (e.g. bright green, leafy aromas): and 3) sulfides, methyl mercaptan and related compounds (e.g. asparagus aromas). Micro oxygenation appears to affect two of the three components (sulfides and hexenols) through oxidation to minimize their contribution to vegetal characters. It is difficult to foresee a dramatic drop in the pyrazine component due to the components' stability and extremely low aroma threshold (in the low ppT).

  Toasted oak used both in the fermentor and the tank for flavoring and aging appears to provide aromas and flavors to help mask vegetal characters. Toasted oak also provides compounds which will crosslink tannins, just as micro oxygenation will provide acetaldehyde which will crosslink tannins. The combination of these two sources of cross linkers should push tannins to form different structures. This process is described in the oxidative section. It may be possible that these crosslinked tannins will form a different source of compounds to interact with primary flavor compounds for that wine. Stronger or weaker interaction with the compounds will change perceived aromas and flavors of the wine, potentially explaining why we see less vegetal character in wines treated with toasted oak and controlled oxygenation.