Enology and Olfactory Learning

Wine is an industry with a relevant impact, related to a huge commercial value at European level. The Eurostat statistics say that production of wine in Europe is relevant and the EU is leader in this field: in 2018, the EU Member States exported €22.7 billion (bn) of wine, and imported a total of €13.4 bn. All told, the sold production of wine (including sparkling wine, port and grape must) in the EU was around 15 billion liters. The total area under vines in the EU was 3.2 million ha in 2015, representing around 45% of the world’s total area under vines and 1.8 % of the total utilized agricultural area. 

The MOOC is developed in the framework of the European Project called MERGO (Mooc in Enology aimed at Reinforcing competences applying Game-based approach and Olfactive learning for the wine tasting Grant Agreement 2020-1-IT02-KA203-080040) funded by the European Commission in the programme Erasmus+ Key Activity 2 - Higher Education field.

The Partnership involved in this project is led by University of Foggia in Italy with three Higher Education institution namely the Universidade De Tras-On-Montes e Alto Douro in Portugal, the University of Cukurova in Turkey and University of Zagreb in Croatia, two associations Organizzazione Nazionale degli Assaggiatori Vino - ONAV in Italy and Vignerons Bio De Nouvelle-Aquitaine in France and a company called Smarted in Italy.

The MOOC includes theoretical lectures based on enology topics, i.e. vineyard and the grape quality, organic wines, wine defects, sensory evaluation of wine, wine tasting techniques, valorisation of autochthons vineyards, production chain, etc. 

The project MERGO aims to bridge the MOOC learning with the procedural learning for the recognition of sensory features using Tangible User Interfaces (TUIs). The project developed an ICT innovative tool that allows the student an autonomous training with olfactory stimuli and applying a validated framework delivered with a scientific approach, applying artificial intelligence modules (adaptive artificial tutors). 

Each lesson also permits a sensory learning experience although the course is online. The learner could exploit an olfactory kit and download on its smartphone an application that allows to train the olfactory learning by experience and in a gamified way.

The expected impact is to innovate the MOOC sector by including procedural and autonomous learning using Internet of Things, Smart Objects and Tangible User Interfaces (TUI) for a concrete and multisensory approach.

Practical experiences during the course are based on the MERGO Odour Wine Game (https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=it.smarted.mergo&hl=it&gl=US) downloadable on Android devices equipped with NFC antennas. By tagging all the olfactory kits with NFC passive antennas it is possible to train autonomously and apply the competences achieved during the online course. More information about olfactory learning please visit (https://mergoproject.eu/).

Frequenza e Attestati

Attestato di Partecipazione


Technology, Design and Engineering

Ore di Formazione




Modalità Corso





6 Settimane



Stato del Corso

Auto apprendimento

Avvio Iscrizioni

26 Mag 2022

Apertura Corso

10 Giu 2022

Chiusura Corso

Non impostato

The course is for people that have the intention to have a consistent and scientifically validated approach to the wine in the field of oenology and viticulture.

The course aims to provide the basic competencies in the field, offering a first overview in the oenology sector. 

The innovative approach of the course allows the student could concretely learn the initial concepts of wine tasting or train their olfactory skills, embedded in an oenology course. Indeed, the course aims to bridge the MOOC learning with the procedural learning for the recognition of sensory features using Tangible User Interfaces (TUIs). These interfaces are a complete innovation in the sector and represent the laboratory side of the learning online activities. The student is able to train own senses autonomously also at home, by setting up the innovative platform. It is important to underline that the olfactory learning with the sommeliers’ kit is not mandatory in order to gain the final certification. It represents an additional value that aims to deepen the knowledge and improve the learning by doing approach.

The learning outcomes are the following:

  • Demonstrate an understanding of the various sensory,
  • Identify key factors in the viticulture filed
  • Understand basic winemaking practices 
  • Understand the difference between types of wine
  • Recognize the main varieties and wine types as they relate to different countries of the Europe
  • Identify the principles of the wine tasting tecniques
  • Train your olfactory skills with a practical approach connected to the theoretical lessons

Although it is open to all the students, the MOOC could meet the interest of the following :

1) Students in universities in the faculty of Agriculture and enology; Food Engineering, Chemical.
2) Professionals in the wine production chain, namely:
  i) winemaking companies;
  ii) professionals in the management of different viticulture phases for the high-quality wine production;
  iii) staff addressed at the maintenance of qualitative standards;
  iv) people who works in the defence of autochthone vineyards;
   v) independent wine producers.
3) Training sommeliers and enthusiasts of wine tasting.

Peres, S.; Giraud-Heraud, E.; Masure, A.-S.; Tempere, S. Rose Wine Market: Anything but Colour? Foods 2020, 9, 1850.

Campo, E., Ferreira, V., Escudero A., Marqués, J. C, Cacho, J. (2006). Quantitative gas chromatography–olfactometry and chemical quantitative study of the aroma of four Madeira wines. Analytica Chimica Acta 563, 1–2, 23: 180-187

Perestrelo, R., Silva, C., Gonçalves, C., Castillo, M., Câmara, J. S  (2020) An Approach of the Madeira Wine Chemistry. Beverages, 6, 12; doi:10.3390/beverages6010012

Pereira, A. C., Reis, M. S., Saraiva, P. M., Marques, J. C. (2011). Madeira wine ageing prediction based on different analytical techniques: UV–vis, GC-MS, HPLC-DAD. Chemometrics and Intelligent Laboratory Systems, 115, 43-55.

Perestrelo, R., Silva, C., Câmara, J. S. (2019). Madeira Wine Volatile Profile. A Platform to Establish Madeira Wine Aroma Descriptors. Molecules 2019, 24, 3028; doi:10.3390/molecules24173028

Pozo-Bayón, M. Á.  and Moreno-Arribas, M. V. (2011). Sherry Wines. Advances in Food and Nutrition Research, Elsevier Inc. ISSN 1043-4526, DOI: 10.1016/B978-0-12-384927-4.00002-6.

Cordero-Bueso, G., Ruiz-Muñoz, M., González-Moreno, M., Chirino, S., Bernal-Grande, M. C., Cantoral, J. M. (2018). The Microbial Diversity of Sherry Wines. Fermentation, 4, 19; doi:10.3390/fermentation4010019

Milheiro, J., Vilamarim, R., Filipe-Ribeiro, L., Cosme, F., Nunes, F. M. (2021). An accurate single-step LLE method using keeper solvent for quantification of trace amounts of sotolon in Port and white table wines by HPLC-DAD. Food Chemistry 350, 15, 129268

Milheiro, J.,  Cosme, F.,  Filipe-Ribeiro, L., Nunes, F. M. Port Wine: Production and Ageing. In:. Chemistry and Biochemistry of Winemaking, Edited by Fernanda Cosme, Fernando M. Nunes and Luís Filipe-Ribeiro. Open InTech

Moreira, N. and Guedes de Pinho, P. (2011). Port Wine. Advances in Food and Nutrition Research, Elsevier Inc.ISSN 1043-4526, DOI: 10.1016/B978-0-12-384927-4.00005-1

Silva Ferreira, A. C., Rodrigues, P., Hogg, T., and Guedes de Pinho, P. (2003). Influence of some technological parameters on the formation of dimethyl sulfide, 2-mercaptoethanol, methionol, and dimethyl sulfone in Port wines. Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry. 51, 727–732.

Silva Ferreira, A. C. and Guedes de Pinho, P. (2004). Nor-isoprenoids profile during port wine ageing—Influence of some technological parameters. Analytica Chimica Acta 513, 169–176.

Jing, W., Min, L., Jixin, L., Tengzhen, M., Shunyu H., Morata, A., Lepe, J. A. S., (2018). Biotechnology of Ice Wine Production. Chapter in book: "Advances in Biotechnology in the Food Industry”. Elsevier; doi: 10.1016/B978-0-12-811443-8.00010-4.

Pucheu-Planté, B., Seguin. G., (1981). Influence des facteurs naturels sur la maturation et la surmaturation du raisin dans le Sauternais, en 1978 et 1979. OENO One, 15(3), 143–160; doi:10.20870/oeno-one.1981.15.3.1362

De la Rosa, T. (1990). Tecnologia de los vino espumosos. Mundi-Prensa Libros.

Gnoinski, G., Schmidt, S. A., Close, D. C., Goemann, K., Pinfold, T. L., Kerslake, F. L., (2021). 1Novel Methods to Manipulate Autolysis in Sparkling Wine: Effects on Yeast. Molecules, 26, 2, 387. Doi:  10.3390/molecules26020387.

Ishii, H. The tangible user interface and its evolution. Communications of the ACM, 51(6), 32-36. (2008)

Ponticorvo, M., Di Fuccio, R., Ferrara, F., Rega, A., & Miglino, O. (2019). Multisensory educational materials: five senses to learn. In Methodologies and Intelligent Systems for Technology Enhanced Learning, 8th International Conference 8 (pp. 45-52). Springer International Publishing.

The course is divided into 10 lessons. Each lesson has an introductory part, with a video recording. Next some text and visual contents describe the specific topics in the course.At the end of each lesson the student could test its olfactory skills with the MERGO application as described above. Finally, an auto-assessment tool is at disposal of the learner in order to auto-evaluate the learning.