The name Vinealis that you can read in a Federico Barbarossa diploma dated 1164, where was indicated the old village, is the witnesses of the old bent of these wine’s lands.
Vignale Monferrato in the 1900 had more than 4000 inhabitants and was one of the most important Monferrato’s commercial and agricultural centre.
Today the village has almost one thousand residents. This number increase in the summer time.
Nowadays Vignale could be properly considered a cultural and tourist symbol of the Monferrato resumption.
The process started almost 35 years ago with the refurbishment of the historical Palazzo dei Conti Callori (XVIII Secolo), centre of the Enoteca Regionale, operated by the Regione Piemonte , and with the subsequent creation of the Festival internazionale di VIGNALEDANZA from the 2015 completely renovated with the new formula of the VIGNALEMONFERRATO FESTIVAL 4 weeks of dance.
In addition to the already mentioned Palazzo dei Conti Callori , we suggest to visit the Chiesa della Beata Vergine Addolorata and the Convento Dei Servi di Maria, located at the entrance of the village in front of the Parco della Rimembranza. The Church has been built up by the “servi di Maria” between the 1470 and 1505 according to the Lombardo-gotico stile as shown by the powerful front made by brickwork and scanned by buttress.
The inside keeps the “Madonna dei sette dolori”, carved in a pear tree, and the beautiful choir with twenty inlaid stalls.
Going up to the left of the building, you enter trough the Porta Urbica, inside the old Vinealis, whose Old Walls are still visible. Inside the old walls you can see, in the big square, the Torre Civica, a quadrangular building dated the XV century, and the already mentioned Palazzo Callori, whose garden and the inner frescos of the great halls are worth to be visited.
From the square you can go up towards the Parrocchiale di San Bartolomeo, designed by the architect Magnacavalli and completed, after he died, by the Vitoli, architect and courtier of the end of the XVIII Century and author of the neoclassic front.
The church has been built on an already existing building drawn out during the XII Century. Inside there are frescos made by L. Morgari and a beautiful picture representing S. Agostino that follows the Moncalvo’s example.
In a clear day, the view that you can enjoy from the lateral small square of the Church is one of the most beautiful panoramas you can see in the Monferrato area. You will enjoy the view of the hills and the villages framed by the Alps shape (Monviso and Monte Rosa).
We are not at the top of the village yet; you can still go further up from the church to the Castello, austere fortress with medieval ruins still visible. The garden preserves a graceful nineteenth-century chapel (open in July).
A turist-board in piazza Mezzadra will show you a route along the major turistic location in the village.
Vignale offers the opportunity to make sports in the sport grounds (football, tennis, volley, basket, gymnasium, tamburello a muro, Pallone elastico); this land is suitable for tracking, mountain biking and horseback tours in the tracks around the hills.
For excursions on horseback you can refer to the riding schools located in the neighbourhood.
In Moncalvo, near Vignale, you can utilise the equipment of the sportive with the swimming pool, tennis grounds, football grounds, volley, field hockey, cycle-path.
Close by Fubine (~ 8 km from Vignale), you can play Golf in the beautiful green of the GOLF CLUB MARGARA.
Nevertheless the traditional sports of this area are the so called Tamburello a Muro and the Pantalera (also named Pallone Elastico) and are both played in the “Sferisterio”, rectangular ground, ninety meter long and fifteen meter large;
The Tamburello championship’s matches are played every Sundays, from April to August, and the Pantalera from May to September.
The Vignale Sferisterio is considered one of the most beautiful of the Monferrato area; it’s built in beaten land, and can be also used by people that had never played this sport before and that would like to try it.
In the Bars, spaghetterie, wine bars, piano bars, located in Vignale and neighbourhoods it is possible to get a good meal while listening live music.
Several appointments and events spread over the entire year will make your stay more pleasant:
The traditional summer appointment with the international festival of Vignale Danza (June and July) from 2015 completely renovated.
The traditional events like the “Festa patronale di San Bartolomeo” (20/25 August) and the “Festival dei Vini” (October).
During the San Bartolomeo Holiday, local institutions organise football games, cross-country race, shooting treasure and music events taking place at the “Palazzo Callori” Garden.
You will be deeply impressed by the Monferrato hills sweetness; the best way to discover them it’s to run bicycles around or going on horseback.
Reachable by bicycle there are very nice villages like Cereseto and Cellamonte, small refurbished villages like Olivola and Moleto , small historical towns like Moncalvo or Casale, religious centre like the “Sacro monte di Crea”.
The Alessandria and Asti towns, 25 Km far from Vignale, are worth to be visited accurately..
In particular Asti attracts tourist’s attention for the historical and monumental aspects of the town and for the importance of his gastronomic and cultural events (La Douja d’Or, Il Festival delle Sagre, la Corsa del Palio) usually taking place in during the month of September.
If You like unpolluted nature and bird-watching, we suggest don’t lose an excursion on the Parco Fluviale del Po e dell’Orba. It is possible to make reservation for excursion with the tourist Guide in order to observe the most than 200 species of birds that here can find their natural habitat for the reproduction.
Inside the park it is also possible to go on a trip by bicycle (you can rent it) or by canoe.
The lands in the around of Casale offer, in a certain period of the year, the characteristic show of the so called “squared sea”, because of the look that takes on the rice-field when the water floods it.
This Monferrato area has been nominated World Heritage by UNESCO for his vineyards and the “infernot”.
The “infernot” is an old little wine-cellar where the farmer kept his vintage wines; some of them are really works of art.
If you have a very refined taste, the Monferrato’s food will satisfy your needs.
These lands, devoted since long time to grow vine for the production of famous wines such as D.O.C. Barbera, Grignolino, Freisa e Malvasia, are nowadays subject to new discoveries from a gastronomic point of view.
Restaurants and agriturismi of this area propose local specialities (Bollito di carne mista alla monferrina, agnolotti, bagna caoda, fritto misto alla monferrina, carne cruda con tartufo, antipasti monferrini), together with some other typical Piedmont specialities.
Several farms born recently re-discovered old recipes and propose tinned foodstuffs, jams, “mostarda”, and cheeses recovered from the local traditions.
Some of them produce food using the Biological Method.
The following typical dishes has been marked as Vignale De.Co. (Denominazione Comunale) and you can test it in some restaurant:
La “BAGNA CAUDA”
I “ FRICIULIN AD SURCLI”
La “GIARDINIERA DI VIGNALE”
La “TORTA VIGNALE” 2015 De.Co.
The “Antico Borgo” is pleased to suggest some eno-gastronomic tours of the area in order to test and buy local products and catch the Monferrato’s smells and tastes.