The history of the Pierino Vellano Winery has very ancient origins, more specifically in the fall of Charles V in Italy in the 16th century, when the Vellano family, of Borgognona origin, was following the emperor who had repaid them for the services rendered with lands which were immediately planted with vines. It was then that the first cellar was built, digging in the tuff rock, which was exploited until the end of the 17th century when the second cellar was built, now the home of the SPA Acquavitae.
But the real legend was born when the third wine cellar was built, in 1867, soon renamed Cantinone, as it was not a single cellar but three connected cellars. In fact, Dionigi Vellano, great-uncle of the current owner, had to build it for his three grandchildren who were unable to work in harmony and cooperation. And it was precisely here that, during the restoration work of about ten years ago, an Egyptian statuette depicting the god Osiris from the 6th century BC was found.
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This statuette embodies the link between Monferrato and Ancient Egypt. It represents Osiris, god of regeneration, of the underworld, ruler of the deceased, guarantor of human survival and god of wine. He is represented standing, mummiform, with a false beard. On his head he wears the atef crown and the uraeus. He holds in his hands the symbols of the power of kings: the hekat scepter and the nekhekh scourge.
It was hidden in the basement of the house, on the decking, covered with various materials. The previous owner of the house Perpetual Dionigi Damonte, ancestor of the current one, born in Piazzano, near Camino, embarked on the church route, left as an apostolic missionary in the Middle East and the Holy Land. During his travels, he came to know a curious, ambiguous and fascinating person, Giambattista Boetti, born like him in Camino in 1743 and died in the Solovki monastery in Russia in 1798. He returned to Italy and became parish priest in the village of origin, he took up residence in the house of Boetti and here he found letters that led him, in 1882, to write a biography. The finding of the statuette of the god Osiris in the house of Damonte is therefore very intriguing: although it is not possible to know if the finding belonged to Boetti or was purchased by Damonte, it is however clear that there was the will to put an image of the lord of regeneration and god of wine, to protect the cellar where the wine itself rested. More likely, Damon had sought help from this Egyptian deity to make the three quarrelsome brothers talk and cooperate.
A few decades passed when, in 1940, upon the death of great-grandfather Maurizio, called Lotu, a large man of 130 kg 1.90m tall, famous for being able to pour wine from a 12-liter bottle into a glass without pouring even a drop, the estate is divided between 8 children, greatly reducing in size and prestige.
Only one of the sons, Giovanni, known as Gioanot, decided to continue with the oenological activity which was subsequently expanded by his son Pierino, known as Pierin, who decided in 1961 to move the activity to the new cellar in the valley below. That same year Maurizio, the current owner, was born; he initially embarked on a journey away from the world of oenology, first by opening a software house and then moving on to the automatic. Returning from long periods abroad, Maurizio finally decided to follow in his father’s footsteps and invest in wine tourism and, therefore, to transform the small family Pierino Vellano into Ca’ San Sebastiano Wine Resort & SPA.