ROADTRIP – VISIONS OF ITALY ON THE CONNECTICUT COAST

Bufalina is a tiny wood fired pizza joint in Guilford, Ct owned by Melissa Pellegrino and Matteo Scialabba, chefs and co-author’s of the Italian Farmer’s Table cookbooks.  The small 325 square foot space in an old carriage house on Boston Post Road is just off of I-95, exit 59.  A quaint oasis amidst strip malls, fast food restaurants and a CVS pharmacy, and the perfect half way stop on my way home from Boston.  I’m a big fan of their books on agriturismi cooking which highlight the fresh, local, seasonal and creative farmhouse cuisine of Italy.   Matt and Melissa traveled throughout Italy working on sustainable farms with agriturismi, recording recipes and absorbing local and regional traditions from each location.  Yes, this is my dream job in another life!  In addition they worked at some of the best New York City bakeries and restaurants before settling in their hometown to bring a taste of Italia to the Connecticut coast. 

I arrived at Bufalina around 6:00 and Matthew was working the oven.  The space holds about 8-10 seats situated at a counter that surrounds the wood-burning oven.  They do take reservations and seem to do a good deal of take-out.  There are also tables out back along with planters of herbs and even a small fig tree.

I decided to go for the name-sake Bufalina which had a lightly charred crust, a bright tomato sauce and the ever-creamy buffalo mozzarella with torn basil leaves and washed it down with an aranciata.  The menu consists of 10 pizzas and one salad and for now is BYOB.  The special pizzas utilize local farms seasonal produce, sweet Italian frying pepper and sausage and orchard white peach, prosciutto and provolone.  This is a soulful place on a not so soulful looking strip.  My only regret is I forgot to get my copy of their new book Southern Italian Farmer’s Table signed……oh well, next trip.

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