The village is famous throughout the territory for its castle, the quality of its wines and the beautiful landscapes.
It is part of the geographical delimitation of the Roero. It is the fourth northernmost municipality in the province of Cuneo. In ancient times the site was called “Monte Acuto” (Mons Acutus in Latin).
The name shows us how the area should have been inhabited since prehistoric times. In the Roman age, some “stratae” and a castelleri, now disappeared, were built. In the Middle Ages the castle of Pulciano was of considerable importance, which in the 10th century was the centre of a vast Alamanno land heritage.
Monteu is mentioned in the documents of 901 and 1065, in which it was inserted in the domains of the bishop of Asti. In 1111 Oberto de Monte Acuto, a castle loyal to the bishop, obtained feudal rights from the latter and began the formation of the hilltop village. Relations between the bishop and the Monte Acuto broke shortly thereafter, and the feud passed into the hands of the Biandrates. It seems that in the castle of Monteu wintered the emperor Federico Barbarossa, a guest of the faithful Biandrate.
As we know, the Biandrate’s fortune ended at the end of the thirteenth century, when the family was swept away from Asti and was forced to sell all their fiefdoms to the Roero. Here too the Srtigiana family retained power until 1748, the year in which Baldassarre Michele Roero, the last descendant, sold everything to the Gromis of Trana.
An interesting peculiarity is that in the mid-17th century Santo Stefano managed to obtain some territories located within the confines of Monteu. For this reason, today the municipality still has an administrative island detached from its borders, the Virani.
THE MEDIEVAL CASTLE
Built by the castellans “de Monte Acuto”, vassals of the bishop of Asti, the castle passed to the counts of Biandrate in the mid-twelfth century. According to ancient chronicles, in the winter of 1158 the emperor Federico Barbarossa wintered in the manor plane. Defeated by Asti, the Counts of Biandrate sold the lordship to the Roero family in 1299, who made the castle the cradle of the family in the area, expanding it for the needs of the different branches in which they divided, and from which the town took from the beginning of the Roero nickname is’ 400. Reduced in its buildings to the north by a substantial collapse in the mid-sixteenth century, the castle suffered serious damage from the 1887 earthquake, so the high keep and some western structures were demolished, while maintaining the right size and fascinating romantic and threatening at the same time.
The concentric parish church, dedicated to S. Nicolao, was built as an ‘oratory’ on the edge of the oldest part of the “villa”. The local Roero consignors belonging to several lines were buried in it from 1345 to the 1700s. Conditioned on the right side by the shape of the ground, it appeared after the reconstruction of the early 1600s with two naves, with a cemetery outside the left side and behind the apse. It was completely rebuilt, still oriented, from 1858 to 1861. At the beginning of the road leading up to the castle, at the disappeared lower door of the “villa”, stands the church of San Bernardino, formerly of the white Disciplinanti. To the east of the Occhetti hamlet stands the secluded parish church of San Pietro di Novelle (first name of the nearby hamlet), cited since 901, with jurisdiction also over Santo Stefano and Montaldo Roero, at a remote transversal route and in the area of ancient settlements already undergoing to the enigmatic castle of Pulciano, which disappeared for almost a millennium together with the church of San Giorgio which it included. The church of San Pietro, rebuilt still oriented in 1929, flanks the seventeenth-century bell tower and the rectory house, partly built with well-squared stone ashlars of the ancient Romanesque church.