Among gastronomic delights and unmissable places, the town of Voghiera in Ferrara stands out not only for the production of the Voghiera DOP garlic but for the beauty left behind from the Estensi, like the well-know Estensi’s Versailles.
In the province of Ferrara, we find a small town full of history but known to most because of a local gastronomic product considered among the greatest excellences of our country. We are talking about Voghiera, a small town of just over 3000 inhabitants, in Ferrara, where there is a particular quality of garlic, called, in its name, Voghiera garlic.
However, the Voghiera garlic, or “ai d’Ughièra”, in dialect, is not the only thing that makes this small town famous, which over the centuries has represented a strategic settlement for the populations from north and south, becoming one of the strongholds of the Estensi family.
ORIGIN AND PROPERTIES
The town of Voghiera has always played a central role in local agriculture, as evidenced by many historical sources. It seems that already the Estensi, the lords of Ferrara, decided to place in Voghiera much of their cultivated land.
Most of these crops concerned garlic, which was used, along with other vegetables, for court banquets.
For centuries, Voghiera garlic has been produced incessantly in all areas of the area, until in 2007 it received the Protected Designation of Origin (PDO – DOP). Moreover, since 2000 its production is protected and promoted by the Consorzio Produttori Aglio di Voghiera.
Voghiera garlic is characterized by a high content of enzymes and vitamins and is rich in mineral salts. The properties and taste of this plant are given by the type of soil on which it grows, composed largely of sand, which gives it a light taste, which is similar to what happens with the cultivation of onions in the territory of Tropea.
VOGHIERA OVER THE CENTURIES
As anticipated above, the position of Voghiera has always been considered strategic both from who came from the south and from who came from the north. This was due to the close proximity to the Po River, which guaranteed navigability, water energy and a position of prevalence over many other territories.
Voghiera’s appearance has changed a lot over time and its prestige has increased exponentially, becoming then a holiday resort of high society and enriching itself with villas first and castles after.
WHAT TO SEE IN VOGHIERA: THE DELIZIA OF BELRIGUARDO AND THE CIVIC MUSEUM OF BELRIGUARDO
Visiting Voghiera is a unique experience that encloses hundreds of years of history in a small town but with immeasurable charm. Very few, in fact, know the existence of an estate also known as the Versailles of the Estensi. It is the Delizia di Belriguardo, the ancient summer palace of the Estensi family.
Built by Niccolò III d’Este in 1435, it had the reputation of being the most luxurious and sumptuous of the villas of the Estensi, from which derives the name Delizia. It is said that its construction was, in some way, supervised by Brunelleschi and that Lucrezia Borgia also stayed there. The castle is arranged around two courts and at its entrance stands a majestic tower.
Today, the Delizia di Belriguardo is home to the civic museum of Belriguardo, established in 2001 and divided into four exhibition areas of great interest: the archaeological section, the Renaissance section, the modern art section and the industrial archaeology section, the latter in 2014.
It then ranges from collections of Roman times, to collections of French ceramics of the sixteenth century, to the works of the local Giuseppe Virgili, up to an exhibition of everyday objects produced by companies based in Ferrara at the beginning of the last century.
Cover Image: dissapore