The unusual name of Cocconato, the center in the high hills (491 meters above sea level) in the province of Asti, 35 km from the capital and not far from Turin, is derived from the Latin word “cum conatum” a testimony of the effort it took to get there, in a time without cars, going slowly on horseback through the winding hilly roads.
Just outside the town, where today there are meadows and fields, in Roman times there was a village, named Marcellina, the first settlement of Cocconato.
The city of Marcellina is linked to the legend of Cagnola Stone, a statue of solid gold in the shape of dog, which was put sull’erpice, believing that he had the power to make the earth fertile.
At the time of the barbarian invasions, while the population took refuge on top of the hill, under the fortifications of the Radicati, the lords of the place, the Cagnola Stone and a golden bust of the emperor were thrown into a deep pit, where they may still be hidden.
On the hilltop is the Tower, one of the features of the Riviera del Monferrato landscape. Now a private villa, the building has had a history that began in the early years of the tenth century, when the Radicati accounts, Lords of Cocconato, built their castle.
Known as the “Riviera thanks to the special microclimate of Monferrato”, in all seasons, Cocconato stands in a secluded location, almost aristocratic, emerging as a ‘happy island from the cold and fog of the underlying areas, while the summer is cool and pleasantly ventilated.
The municipality, the very temperate climate gives optimum characteristics for many valuable crops: interesting are the growth and reproduction of trees such as palm, olive and mimosa.
Widespread is the practice of collecting the precious white truffles.