Pass Wine Through an Electric Field for Delicious, Rapid Aging

If you're the kind of destitute scientist who drinks Franzia but has a couple of high-powered titanium electrodes lying around, you're in luck, because a short blast of electricity can vastly improve your swill.

Scientists and oenologists (did you know there's a word for wine dorks? Other than wino?) have discovered that they can rapidly age and thus round out the flavour of cheap, gross wine by using powerful electrodes. This technique is mostly being applied to raw, young wines, but it very much improves the flavour and "mouthfeel" of cheap and dirty wines as well. Wine is pumped through a pipe running between two titanium electrodes, which increases the reactions between alcohols and acids. Those reactions produce esters, which contribute to fruitiness and flavour.

They also found that too much electricity can create gross new flavours from new aldehydes, rendering it worse than it began, but a few super snobs have testified that the artificial aging really does work. The efforts were begun in China by chemist Xin An Zeng, and now a number of Chinese wineries are investigating the possibilities. Personally, I've been waiting for electrified wine for years. [The New Scientist]

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