For years, Il Buco has been bringing its own impression of little Italy, squeezed into Ponsonby Road. But its newly opened Vulcan Lane counterpart is what has stolen my heart, as it hides tucked away from Queen, up the hill across High Street. Understated, like its older brother- Il Buco brings a new dimension to the now already expanded corner of the CBD. And holy shit the pizza is amazing.
For such a diminished façade, Il Buco packs a punch. As you walk up the stairs, over the black tiled entrance- all you find is a kitchen, display cabinet, and coffee machine- underwhelming right? Wrong. As we feasted our eyes on the most carefully selected, beautiful looking pizza delicacy I’ve ever seen, we placed our order, and took a seat at one of few leaners poking out from the opposite wall. It almost seems to squeeze itself into the alcove of Vulcan Lane as it pokes its head out to the outdoor patio. It seems delicate. But there’s an art to it.
Getting them light effects going - the coffee machine definitely stands out
You can smell it too. The air is filled with tomato-cheesy aromas. As cliché as it is, you cant help but get excited. And I’ve never taken a bite of pizza, preceding a nod of immense approval at the taste sensation before. Il Buco takes the idea of delicacy, and churns it out in the form of small pizzas presented on some pretty damn cool boarded share platters.
Some pretty damn cool boarded share platters
With names you will struggle to pronounce, my favourite was the Funghi- not because it was the easiest to say, but because I absolutely love mushrooms. It was a close second favorite between the Salsiccia- basically Italian sausage and mozzarella, and the Boscaiola- the same with a bit of mushroom and capsicum. They also whipped up a seriously good calzone pizza. Il Buco’s generously served square slices are each perfectly crafted, you can tell a little Italian family touch has gone into each and every piece. And don’t forget to chuck a few croquettes in there too, we would’ve regretted it if we didn’t, because they serve it up with a perfect aioli (and they’re only a buck each). Don’t skip on the coffee either, or any of their range of All Good Organic soft drinks- yet again.
This place is perfect for an afternoon catch up- it’s so close to uni you can smell it. But far away enough to take you away from the action a bit. Perfect for people watching if you’re benched out on the patio for the afternoon- and the pizza is delicious, hugely underpriced once you’ve taken a bite. I would recommend not skimping out on this one, go in for a full lunch your first time round, and try it all. Before you know it you’ll become a regular. Oh, and don't forget, you can always test the waters with the original Ponsonby Road edition too.