What's Inside #WineWednesday: Isoamyl Acetate

We know Throwback Thursday is tomorrow, but humor us:

Who’s there?
Orange, who?
Orange you glad I didn’t say banana?

AvaWinery Isoamyl Acetate

Okay, we know: you’ve been sick of that joke since the first grade- we don’t blame you. Admit it, though, bananas were the “it” fruit for a while. I mean Gwen Stefani even sang a song spelling it out for us. Thanks to Pinterest, there are countless ways to use bananas aside from their traditional nutritional benefits: hair treatments, cosmetic improvements, and even dog treats to name a few. If you try out the banana trends, you’ll likely hear a few comments of how you smell like bananas. Continue to wow the masses with your knowledge of the benefits of bananas by talking about the exact chemical that gives the yellow treat its smell- Isoamyl Acetate.

Facing the Science:

Science is can be daunting, but without it we wouldn’t know the countless benefits of bananas and their peels. We understand some of the compound names are overwhelming, but don’t give up! Isoamyl Acetate (eye-so-AH-mull a-suh-tate) is worth knowing because of its prevalence. Aside from that, it’s such a great molecule that it’ll make you go bananas…(you knew that was coming.)

So, what’s in #WineWednesday:

Isoamyl Acetate

Chemical Name: Isoamyl Acetate
Class: Ester
Smell: Fruity, sweet, banana
Color: Colorless

Uses: Isoamyl Acetate is a popular aroma and flavor molecule. It contributes scents to soaps, perfumes, and even banana scented scratch-n-sniff stickers. And, you guessed it, Isoamyl Acetate adds a sweet but gentle banana taste to candies, juices, and wines you know and love. The banana candy in the packet of Runts or the coveted banana flavored Laffy Taffy wouldn’t be the chosen candy if it weren’t for this multitasking molecule.

Where it’s found in nature: Believe it or not, there are two different common places to find natural Isoamyl Acetate: bananas and beer. Banana oil is almost purely Isoamyl Acetate. Also, during the fermentation stages of brewing beer, the compound can make an appearance. In smaller amounts, Isoamyl Acetate can also be found in peppermint and in green teas leaves.

Uses in Product Goods: Isoamyl Acetate is hidden away in more product goods than you might think. It blends so nicely with other flavor and aroma molecules that it is often hidden at first sniff or taste only to be revealed later. Isoamyl Acetate is used in most soaps, perfumes, candies, and chewing gum that either smells fruity or minty. It lends itself to the softening of peppermint scents that would be much sharper without Isoamyl Acetate.

Do you ever notice a slight hint of banana in your wine? Do you love it, hate it, or not notice it?