Let’s go to the discovery of Bra, its typical sausage, and zizzola, the city’s symbol
Located in the hills of the Roero, in the province of Cuneo, Bra is a land of fortresses, vineyards, and castles, and above all food and wine excellences such as the famous Bra sausage.
City of ancient origins, its roots go back to the Neolithic period, here there are traces of the Roman Empire, while the Savoy dynasty has left indelible marks. Bra is also the cradle of Piedmontese baroque. It is home to the Slow Food movement and to a sausage, unique in taste and origin. But the city is also identified with the zizzola.
Walking through the streets and squares of Bra you can admire important churches and historic buildings such as the Town Hall from the central part of the convex façade. Of medieval origin, it underwent several renovations over the centuries. An invitation staircase leads to the large arched door. The town hall has several similarities with Palazzo Carignano in Turin.
Or Palazzo Traversa, whose primitive nucleus was built in the mid-fifteenth century and today houses the Museum of Archeology and History of Art, inside which you can see finds from ancient Pollenzo and local works of art from the seventeenth century to date. Palazzo Mathis, of fourteenth-century origin, today is the seat of cultural exhibitions and reviews. Even Garrone Palace arose in the Middle Ages and in the time underwent radical changes.
The zizzola is the symbol of the city. Built with an octagonal plan, it has two floors surmounted in the center by a turret. It can be admired on the Monteguglielmo hill, at the highest point of Bra, in the place where the castle once stood. The esplanade behind the villa, according to tradition, would have been the convergence point of the witches who celebrated on Saturdays. It was certainly a country villa in which the owners used to give parties and receptions.
The Politeama Boglione Civic Theater was built thanks to the bequest of Giuseppe Boglione based on a project by the architect Achille Sfondrini and inaugurated on September 1, 1900. Remodeled several times, it was completely transformed in the 1950s.
In addition to its historic buildings, Bra is full of churches, such as that of Santa Chiara, a masterpiece of the royal architect Bernardo Antonio Vittone. it was built by the Poor Clares in 1742. The church of the Trinity, also known as the “Battuti Bianchi”, dates back to the seventeenth century.
Or the parish church of Sant’Andrea, built in Baroque style, and built on a design by Gian Lorenzo Bernini. Or the parish church of Sant’Antonino Martire, built by the will of the monks of San Colombano di Bobbio in 1693 to replace the old parish church. Inside there are several works, including the statues of 1728 Sant’Anna with the Virgin child and of San Gioacchino with the Virgin child by the sculptor Carlo Giuseppe Plura.
The hamlet of Pollenzo
Finally, Pollenzo, its most famous hamlet, deserves a view, on whose square an architectural complex of buildings that recall the ancient splendor of one of the private residences of the royal family overlooks.
Pollenzo is also the seat of the University of Gastronomic Sciences, while the tower houses an original wine bank, where some of the most famous Italian crus are kept and aged.
Sausage and cheeses
A unique sausage of its kind that is produced only in Bra is the typical veal sausage to be tasted raw and accompanied by local wines. But this is also a land of cheeses, such as Bra Dop, soft and hard which is a delight for the palate. A cheese, as well as sausage, is celebrated all over the world. Cheese and sausage, however, must be tested only with the type or Bra bread in a sandwich that is the local answer to the much more famous multinational: Mac’d Bra, which contains all the flavors of the territory.
How do I get to Bra?
Bra can be reached by car from Turin following the A6 Turin – Savona motorway, Marene exit, then Strada Statale 702 in the direction of the Tangenziale Ovest of Bra. Or for other origins, A21 Torino – Piacenza motorway, Asti Est exit, then Strada Statale 231 towards Alba – Cuneo. By train, the Bra station is on the Asti – Alba – Cavallermaggiore line. The nearest airport is Turin Caselle.