Traveling though Perno
with Views of Castiglione Falletto & Serralunga d'Alba, Piedmont, Italy (7/5/2016)

After my morning visit to the Cappellano Winery in Serralunga d'Alba, I had a 2:30 appointment at Vietti and plenty of time to the drive 10 minutes or so to Castiglione Falletto and get a bite to eat. That is, until I went the wrong way and spent nearly an hour driving through the mountain town of Perno. The good news is, I got to see and photograph some great views.

For each image, I have posted a compressed (and possibly cropped) version. Click on it to see the original, much larger image.

Here in blue is the route I should have taken:
Original aerial map photo © Google Maps.

All I had to do was to head north on SP125 until I hit the rotary in Uccellaccio. Then take SP9 south into Castiglione Falletto. Unfortunately, when I fired up the GPS that came with my rental car and it said "head north on SP125", I had no idea whether I was facing north or south. So I just headed out . . . south, as it turned out. Now, in most places where I have used GPS, if you go the wrong way, in a block or two, it tells you to make a right and 3 lefts, and you are now going the right way. But in this area, there aren't such turn-arounds. So the GPS took me up into the town of Perno just to turn around and head north on SP125.

I have tried to draw this detour in red on the maps below. To connect the two maps together, look for the Josetta Saffirio Winery on the right and the town of Perno on the left. I went around this loop clockwise, that is first past Josetta Saffirio, then to Perno and back to SP125.
Original aerial map photos © Google Maps.

Views of Castiglione Falletto from the East

The red X on the upper map northeast of Castiglione Falletto is where I stopped only a few
minutes south of Cappellano on the SP125 and took these photos of Castiglione Falletto:
Looking at this last photo, the large white building in Castiglione Falletto between the tall tree and the tower
is the Vietti winery, where I was aiming to go. At the time, it did not seem that I was headed in the wrong direction.

The colorful house about halfway up the hill that can be seen in the first 3 photos is a farmhouse of the Bava Winery.
The vineyard to the left of the colorful house is the Vietti Barbera portion of Scarrone. Below the colorful house is
a small plot of Nebbiolo from which Bava makes a Barolo Scarrone.

Sadly, in my rush to get out of my car before a large truck came by, I broke my 18-55mm lens. Fortunately, I still had my 18-200mm lens, which is what I used for the rest of my trip.

Next, I crossed the commune boundary into Monforte (though I'm not that close to the town) and turned onto SP347
heading up the hill toward Perno past the Josetta Saffirio Winery. At this point I knew I was going the wrong way,
but didn't know how to fix it since my car GPS and Google Maps were giving me the same directions.

Views of Castiglione Falletto from the South

As I headed up the hill into Perno from the south, I had to stop
at this spot south and slightly east of Perno [marked with a red X
on the map below (and on the bottom map above)].

It is easy to find the exact spot on the road because someone painted "Look California" on the guard rail:
Note that the photo on the left is mine from July 2016. The photo on the right is from Google Street View
in September 2011. So between 2011 and 2016 someone repainted these letters in yellow.

Since my trip, I have learned who painted these words on the guard rail. Moreover, it turns out that the same two people who painted the original words, are the ones who went back and added the yellow highlights. They were so pleased with the many photos of their artwork that have appeared on the Internet over the years that they did not want it to fade away.

The view in the photos above is to the north. The nearer red roofs on the left are the town of Perno that I will pass through shortly. The hilltop town with the castle in the distance on the upper right is Castiglione Falletto. The string of red roofs going left from Castiglione Falletto sits above the famous Rocche di Castiglione Falletto vineyard. To the right of Rocche, under the town are Pira and Scarrone vineyards.

A little broader view from the same spot:

Castiglione Falletto from the south:

A closer shot of Castiglione Falletto from the south:

A closer shot of Rocche di Castiglione Falletto just south of Castiglione Falletto.
The houses at the top sit along SP9 as it heads into Castiglione Falletto:
I believe the town in the distance is La Morra.

Views of Serralunga d'Alba from the West

Looking east from this same vantage point, you can see much of the west-facing vineyards of Serralunga d'Alba. [Note the original file is 15MB.]
Some of the vineyards in the northern part (far left) include Fontanafredda, Carpenga, Sorano, San Rocco, Baudana, and Meriame.
Going around the first ridge that juts out toward me, we have Prabon, then Gabutti at the near point, then Parafada, and Lazzarito.
Wrapping around to the next ridge, we have Le Turne, Margheria, Marenca, and Rivette.
Finally, the vineyard you can see between the bushes on the far right sloping from left to right is Rionda, a.k.a. Vigna Rionda, Collina Rionda.
Further to the right, out of the photo are vineyards such as Arione, Boscarereto, Falletto, Francia, and Ornato.

Just the town of Serralunga d'Alba:

Views of Perno from the Southeast

Perno, with Castiglione Falletto in the distance on the far right:

A close up of the center of Perno:

It is hard to drive these narrow, winding roads . . . while taking pictures:

Entering Perno:

Leaving Perno:

So here I am, blindly following my GPS, still hoping to make it to my 2:30 appointment at Vietti, when what do I see?

The Cappellano Winery. 45 minutes after I had left it.
Photo © Google Maps.

Arriving in Castiglione Falletto

Finally, only about 5 minutes after passing the Cappellano Winery, I approach Castiglione Falletto from the north on the west side.
The vineyard you see in the first photo on the left is the upper part of the Pernanno vineyard which is owned by Bongiovanni who makes a Barolo Pernanno from this plot. The vineyard you see in the first photo on the right and very clearly in the 2nd photo is a part of Scarrone used for Vietti's Barbera Tre Vigne.

On my right at this point, on the other side of the road, are the more famous vineyards of Bricco Boschis and Monprivato.

Passing the Sobrero winery just before turning into town on Via Roma:


So I arrive in Castiglione Falletto 20 minutes before my 2:30 appointment at Vietti. Thinking that I'd better get some food in my stomach before tasting more wine, I look around for a quick bite. I see the lovely restaurant and inn, Locanda Del Centro, pictured below on the left, but I figure it will probably be too slow. So I walk past headed to the bar pictured on the right.
These two photos © Google Maps.

As I walk past Locanda Del Centro, I hear my name being called. I turn around, and it is Gard Hauge. We have never met before, but Gard has seen my posts on Facebook that I am in the Langhe. So he recognizes me walking by. He tells me that the bar is closed, the only open restaurant is Locanda Del Centro, the one I walked past. He invites me to join him and his friends there, an offer I cannot refuse. I get a quick, tasty bowl of gnocchi, and Gard sends me on my way, insisting that he will cover my lunch so I won't be late to Vietti. I am overwhelmed that one can make such connections through the Internet and a shared love of a particular wine. Thank you Gard!

Since I was in too much of a rush to take photos, I took a couple from Gard's Facebook page of Gard and he sent me one of his friends, Julianne, Petter, Ulrik and Per Louis at another lunch they had at Antico Podere Tota Virginia in Serralunga d'Alba with Castiglione Falletto in the background. Such lovely people made me feel so welcome:


Next, my 2:30 appointment at Vietti.



All original content © Ken Vastola