Baudana Baudana Dinner with Giuseppe Vaira
@ Popina Restaurant, Brooklyn, NY, 2/21/2023

Chambers Street Wines in NYC put together this fascinating vertical of Barolos from the Baudana Vineyard in Serralunga d'Alba made by the Baudana family, and later the Vajra family.

Luigi Baudana inherited the winery from his uncle Giovanni Baudana some time in the late 1970s. Giovanni had inherited the winery from his father Domenico some time before 1970.

The first two Barolos in this dinner were made by Giovanni, entirely from the Baudana vineyard. The 2000, 2001 were made entirely by Luigi. The 2005 was made by Luigi but finished by Giuseppe Vaira. From 2008 on, the wines were grown, made, and bottled by the Vaira family. The vineyard was the same throughout.

The Baudana wines were double-decanted by the restaurant at midday.

For more background and information about the Luigi Baudana winery and the Vajra winery see the links at the bottom of this page. There are also links there to my previous dinners with members of the wonderful Vaira Family and my visit to their winery.

The text of the email from Chambers Street Wines advertising this dinner:
We have long been in love with the Barolo Baudana, made since 2009 by the Vajra family working with Luigi Baudana (the family name is also shared with the vineyard called Baudana). The vineyard occupies an enviable position, sharing the long run that includes Gabutti, Lazzarito, Rionda, and Francia; the resulting wine is a classic Serralunga, with effortless richness made complex with an austere but generous core.

Now we have a chance to taste a range of vintages in the amiable and wise company of Giuseppe Vajra, including several of the wines that Vajra has collaborated on, and a couple of extremely rare older Baudana wines. On February 21st, please join us at Popina for what will be a memorable night.

The wines – all Baudana Barolo Baudana – will include 2018, 2015, 2013, 2010, 2008, 2005, 2001, 2000, 1974, 1970. All in – wine, service, tax, and Popina's delicious food – $250 per person.

Click on any photo with a border for a larger view of that photo. Some larger photos contain more image as well as much higher resolution and are typically 3–4 MB.

The Venue and Reception

Arriving at Popina:
Mama Popina is an imposing presence near the entrance:
Tom Maskell chats with some other early arrivers, while Jamie Wolff of Chambers Street walks past:
The steaks are ready to cook in the kitchen:

The guest of honor, Giuseppe Vaira, arrives. Jamie Wolff (left), Kevin Natoli (right):


The Dinner

The Menu:

Flight 1: 1970, 1974
With Pork Tonnato:

Flight 2: 2000, 2001, 2005
With Paccheri with Lamb Ragu:
Giuseppe and Tom taste Flight 2:

Giuseppe tells us about the winery and the vineyard:

Flight 3: 2008, 2010, 2013
With Dry-Aged Strip Steak with Grilled Radicchio, Parmesan Fonduta:

Flight 4: 2015, 2018
With Robiola Bosina, Parmigiano Reggiano, Salumi, and hearty bread:

A good time was had by all:

All the reds:


What fun to taste such a rare vertical of wine from a specific vineyard made by three different winemakers at the same winery. And to have Giuseppe Vaira there to tell us all about these wines was a particular treat.

The food at Popina was excellent and well-matched to the wines.

View of lower Manhattan from the Manhattan Bridge:

More on the Baudana and Vajra Wineries

The links below contain more background and information about the Vajra winery, the Luigi Baudana Winery, and the Vaira family.

The Luigi Baudana Winery website.

The Vajra winery website.

In 2019, my NYC Nebbiolo group held a vertical of Vajra Bricco delle Viole Barolo with Giuseppe Vaira. Bricco delle Viole is the flagship Barolo from the Vajra winery.

In July of 2016, I had the pleasure of visiting the Vajra winery and meeting the family. Here is my report on my visit there.

In February of 2016, I had the good fortune to sit with Giuseppe and his brother Isidoro (Isi) at the Gala dinner of La Festa del Barolo. This link includes some background and some tasting notes on Vajra wines.

My tasting notes posted from CellarTracker.


All original content © Ken Vastola