Wine amelioration is a euphemism for artificial intervention in winemaking to compensate for nature’s shortcomings.

As a result, in cooler wine areas, the phrase is frequently used interchangeably with ‘enrichment’ and ‘chaptalization’ (due to grapes that are not ripe enough). It can also be used to describe the deacidification process in colder climates. It is commonly used in hotter regions to refer to the acidification process (since mature grapes lose acidity quickly).

More broadly, it refers to any chemical modification to the compounds naturally present in grape juice or wine.

It is to be noted that many regional authorities restrict the range of amelioration possible in order for the wines not to be qualified as artificially crafted. For example, in the European Union, cool regions can chaptalize but not acidify; hot regions can acidify but not chaptalize; and temperate regions can either chaptalize or acidify (but it is forbidden to do both at the same time).

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