7/18/2013 10:28:00 AM

Sneak Peek at Bufalina Pizza

East Side pizzeria Bufalina officially opens its doors today, and we suggest you run to East Cesar Chavez to try the over-the-top delicious Neapolitan-style pizza and antipasti. Austin has been waiting for over two years for the restaurant to finally open, and we expect wait times at the new hot spot to be quite lengthy (though perhaps only hours, not years). Owner Steven Dilley honed his pizza-making skills in Naples, and he has installed a Stefano Ferrara oven for flawless Neapolitan crust. Be sure to check out our pics below.

The Space: Think cozy, with wooden communal tables as well as a few private tables and bar seating. The wood-fired oven takes center stage, even if it’s in the back of the restaurant. Blink and you’ll miss the building on East Cesar Chavez.

The Food: The menu is tiny but full. The cherry tomato salad started us off right, with thickly cut, house-made mozzarella, cherry tomatoes, basil and a rich layer of olive oil. We also liked the baby romaine salad with a creamy yet light mint-marigold dressing. And of course the fresca pie with mozzarella, Sungold tomatoes, arugula, prosciutto and yet more olive oil proved completely addicting. The meats and cheeses (except for the house-made mozzarella) are sourced from Antonelli’s, and the baguettes come from Easy Tiger. The doughy yet thin crust had us at its mercy. As Eric Silverstein of the Peached Tortilla said, “The pizza matches the hype.”

The Drinks: Wine and draft beer are the name of the game here.

The Crowd: Hip East Austin meets downtown chic at Bufalina. The vibe is casual and neighborhoody, so expect to say hi to a few of your neighbors and friends.

The Cost: Affordable.

The Details: 1519 E. Cesar Chavez, #200; 512-524-2523

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