Vaglio Serra: in the “quadrilateral of the four A” the pearl protected by the woods.
Vaglio Serra is a small town in the Monferrato area among the vineyards and woods of Val Sarmassa.
It is located in the Lower Monferrato, near the Langhe, a territory of great naturalistic, cultural and, above all, food and wine.
In fact, Vaglio Serra is located in the center of an area formed by Asti, the city of the Palio and the famous Italian sparkling wine, Alba, the homeland of truffles, Acqui Terme, the Piedmontese spa town, Alessandria, and the many villages and country towns which make the Monferrato one of the most extraordinary landscapes of Piedmont. Turin is located just over an hour's drive away.
The town covers an area of 4.76 km² and has a population of about 300 inhabitants.
It is 26 km from Asti, the provincial capital.
Settlement of ancient origin, perhaps dating back to the 2nd century BC, presumably year 118; it was inhabited by the Ligurian tribe.
Its name, it is believed that derives from the Latin toponym “Vallum”, transformed over time into Vallium and subsequently into Vaglio Serra.
Its location suggests a fortified post, located in the Castellaro area, in defence of the Roman road that passed through the long and wild valley of the Rio Marzano, a territory between Incisa and Vinchio, then continuing, for Alba and Asti.
The first historical document of Vaglio is reported in a Charter of 984 AD. of the Marquisate of Incisa, in which Vaglio appears among the feudal lands of the Marquises of Incisa along with many others, such as Carentino, Bergamasco, Castelnuovo, Bruno, Mombaruzzo, Lanerio, Garbaziola.
From that date, Vaglio depended on the Incisa and follows all the events.
In 1095, Asti became a municipality and attracted various counts in its jurisdiction, including Vaglio.
In 1154, the “Barbarossa” decided to regain its complete imperial authority over the rebel Municipalities in Italy: it destroyed Testona and Chieri and put Asti to the sword.
Vaglio is assaulted and destroyed by the troops of the Incisa and Monferrato allies of the Emperor.
The survivors find refuge on the more south-west heights in view of the Valle Belbo, with difficulty trying to rebuild it.
In 1191, it moved to the Marquisate of Monferrato and then returned to the Incisa in 1203.
In 1212, according to the Codex Astensis, possession given to the City of Asti by Bergogno and Moroello di Vinchio, of that part of Vinchio and Vaglio in their possession, castle and village; in the same year, 17 October, investiture granted by the Municipality of Asti, in direct fief, to the brothers themselves, of that part of Vinchio, Vaglio and Castelnuovo and sworn loyalty to the said Municipality.
In 1230, the Rogerenghi, Lords of Vaglio, sold it to the Municipality of Asti.
In the dispute between the Monferrato and the Municipality of Asti and Alessandria, Marquis Guglielmo VII is overwhelmed by treachery and captured (1290) by the Alessandrini who will no longer leave him: he will die in prison.
Asti manages to enslave to its power several counties and even the Marquisate of Incisa friend and vassal of the Monferrato with the various towns of fief including Vaglio.
Food and wine and typical products.
The economy is mainly based on agriculture: the cultivation of vines is the primary source of income for farmers.
The Barbera d'Asti, Moscato d'Asti, and Asti Spumante wines are, without any doubt, the pride of the local enology.
An occasion to taste them is the Sagra delle Scorte di San Martino.
To be seen.
The Castle of Vaglio Serra (or Stella) dates back to the 18th century.
It is also known as “Stella” from the name of the family that lived there originally.
The manor, after being unused for some time, was bought by a group of Swedish entrepreneurs.
Today it is used as a holiday home and a location for weddings.
The Church of Saint Pancrazio, parish church, was instead built in 1744. Inside it is a precious baptistery of the fifteenth century.
The current building was erected in 1722 on the ruins of the previous one.
Precious ancient plants dwell in the roof garden of the Municipal Palace. From here it is possible to appreciate a splendid panorama.