The chemical composition of the wine is determined by the climatic conditions that, during the year, influence the vegetative and reproductive cycle of the vine: air and soil temperature, light, rain, snow, fog, frost and winds are the unpredictable protagonists which characterize the structure, taste and aromas of the wine that will be produced.
They are perhaps the most complex component of the Terroir, that combination of natural factors, vines and human component that does not make two places in the world equal to each other.
Torrecuso climate conditions
The territory of Torrecuso (507m. above sea level), is characterized by a warm and temperate climate, in which winter has much more rainfall than summer.
Despite the proximity of the sea (the Sannio is just over an hour from Naples) the Mediterranean climate, here, assumes particularity that the climate classification of Köppen defines as a subtype “Csa”.
The territories which are part of this classification exceed 22 ° C in the hottest month of the year.
Moreover, in Torrecuso, the presence of an important river like the Calore that is extented through the valley, it influences a lot the microclimate in the way that it takes on characteristics that make it actually resemble more of a Padano-alpine climate (according to the classification of climatologists) than of a Mediterranean climate with dry summers, mild winters and annual temperatures above 15 °.
The vine is more demanding in terms of climate than soil. First among the climate factors is the heat. Normally the germination of the vine occurs with minimum temperatures from 8 ° to 12 °, flowering with temperatures from 16 ° to 18 °, and even more frequently at 20 °, the maturation between 18 ° and 23 °; the defoliation between 12° and 14°. The sum of heat necessary for the entire cycle of the vine development (improperly called thermal constant), varies from place to place, and from vine to vine.
The European vines are not very sensitive to winter’s cold at rest, dangerous temperatures are considered those that fall below -16 ° -17 °. More rarely, on the other hand, it happens that the vines suffer due to maximum temperatures. (Treccani – Vite)
It is crucial in giving intensity and elegance to the aromas of the wine as well as ensuring the presence of acids in the pulp. Also necessary for the good preservation of the wine are the temperature excursions. We are talking about the interval of centigrade degrees between the sum of the average temperature of the day and that average of the night.
The optimal daily temperature range for the vine is around 15 ° C with maximum around 30 ° C and minimum around 15 ° C, at equal of environmental conditions, such as the availability of daily light.
Climate average data of Torrecuso
With an average temperature of 22.6 ° C, August is the hottest month of the year. 5.9°C is the average temperature of January, which corrisponds with the lower temperature of the year. During the year temperature averages vary of 16.7°C
The light is another important factor for the vine.
Exposed to the south-east, the vineyards of “Il Poggio” enjoy a lighting that guarantees their ideal photosynthesis and a correct deposit of the sugars that preside over the maturation of the berries.
In general, a greater brightness during the vegetative period, but especially in the months from May to August, is good for the production of more sugary grapes.
It is also believed that, within certain limits, the abundance of light is able to compensate for a heat deficiency.
To the wineexpert (oenologist) and to the winemaker rain is appreciated when necessary. Indispensable during the period of ripening, that is to say when, at the beginning of maturation, fruits have the greatest need of it and an excessively dry climate could compromise it.
Rain is desirable immediately before the harvest as a slight water stress speeds up the loss of water from the grape.
The scientific literature considers the vine to be cultivable when the rainfall is at least 700 mm/year, of which at least 400 mm are needed during the vegetative period.
Rainfalls data of Torrecuso
In torrecuso, rainfalls total average in 2018 it was 738 mm according to the agro-meteorological data – Torrecuso station of the Campania region and the Climate.org portal. And if we compare the driest month with the rainest month of the year we prove that there is a rainfall difference of 73 mm.
The snow does not have a great influence on the vine since in the viticultural areas it snows during the rest period. However we can say that the snow has a beneficial effect for the following reasons:
• It prevents excessive cooling of the soil.
• It releases small amounts of nitrogen during the plant’s resting period.
The fog in general is not very beneficial, maintaining an environment that is too wet around the vines and intercepting the sun’s rays.
The dew for itself may be quite useful, but if the vines remain wet for a long time, they may have peronosporic infections.
The frost can be seriously damaging for the vine when it occurs in late spring, after the germination has occurred; while it is harmless in autumn.
In Torrecuso the winds from the East or from the West blow almost constantly, while the cold ones from the north are held by the Matese Mountain.
In the cultivation of the vine, if violent winds are harmful, moderate ventilation helps to fertilize the flowers and above all allows the vines to dry more quickly after the rain.