It’s in the Eraserhood that Bufad Pizza has found its home. The clean lines of the dining room make for a modern pizzeria experience, but the Neapolitan pies are as traditional as they come.
Philly neighborhoods all have one thing in common. There’s a tie that binds them, be it a corner store, a water ice stand that everyone loves, or a new pizza parlor that long-time inhabitants and noobs alike can get behind.
It’s in the Eraserhood that Bufad Pizza has found its home. This north-central Philly neighborhood has shed some of its industrial grit and grime in recent years, making way for new families and new businesses.
The clean lines of the dining room make for a modern pizzeria experience, but the Neapolitan pies are as traditional as they come.
Head chef Lauren Weitman remembers when the oven arrived from Los Angeles prior to Bufad’s February 2013 opening.
“It came on a tractor trailer in pieces and was built inside the restaurant,” said Weitman. “They literally popped it through where the windows were going to be.”
Weitman likes to use hardwoods like oak or ash in the EarthStone wood fire, gas assist oven.
“No fruit trees,” she said. “They’re too sappy and don’t burn as nice.”
The oven runs at about 850 degrees in the center and around 950 degrees near the flames. Near the top of the oven it’s more like 1000 degrees. Pizzas cook in about 60 to 90 seconds. And these are no stationary pies.
“We move the pizzas around to get more flame,” she said. “More flame means more speckling. We usually raise it to the roof to give it a one-two blister. And if there’s any cheese that isn’t melted, that’ll finish the job.”
The chef’s job may be done, but that pizza’s not complete until you’ve topped it with some of the garlicy breadcrumb topping that the server brings over. Sprinkle a bit of crumb and crushed red pepper — and then it’s ready to eat.