Osteria La BucaAdd to Favorites
Saved to Favorites
Please contact the business for updated hours/services due to the COVID-19 advisory.
04/13/2009Provided by Citysearch -
The freshest pasta I've tasted in LA. The bruschetta is great and tiramisu is phenomenal. I was less impressed with the pizza, but I'll have to try out another pie to really give it a fair chance... still by far one of the best Italian places in town.
Try to get a spot up top near the fireplace if you can
03/05/2009Provided by Citysearch -
I went to Osteria La Buca because it was relatively close to my work and it had five (5) stars on this site. The restaurant is right by the studios in a slightly sketchy area. The inside, however, is lovely and it definitely seems like an industry hangout. My waiter was nice, but pushy. I consented to a meal that I didn't pick and ended up ordering a dessert I did not want. I had one of the pasta specials which wasn't anything special... It wasn't really good at all. It was about on par with spaghetti and Ragu. Plus, my companions and I were left hungry due to the small portions. The Diet Coke mix was off as well. The tiramisu, however, was actually pretty good. The bill for three (3) pasta dishes, two (2) desserts, and three (3) soft drinks came to eighty dollars ($80) before adding in a tip. Although the prices aren't exorbitant, they are way too much for the quality and amount of food you receive.
02/13/2009Provided by Citysearch -
This is my new neighborhood joint. Well, when I have someone over with money willing to treat me, that is. I went there last night for the first time after seeing that is is packed nearly every night of the week even while restaurants around the country are reporting slow downs in business. There is a great energy inside. If you don't know Italian wines - which I don't really - just ask for a reccomedation. Or ask to try a sample. They will gladly oblige. Have a drink at the intimate bar and then have your dinner there too. Or move upstairs to the cozy fireside room. The ravioli with butter and sage sauce is perfection. The pizza was delicious - I prefer a little crispier crust, but the quality of ingredients and preparation were obvious.
This is the place to take your friends with money who don't know this pocket of LA and then they will think you know secrets about the city that they don't.
Last night, dinner for two with salads and two drinks per person came to $143 including tip.
11/21/2008Provided by Citysearch -
I'm a former restaurant owner and I'm a pretty damn good cook. I found La Buca a few years ago and I have watched it grow into a beautiful restaurant. Comments to other reviewers. It's not a pizza take out joint. The pizza is served as a first course.Secondly, if a waiter rushes you, ask to speak to the manager. The waiters interested in turning your table over.Don't put up with it because the owner won't. The food is delicious and because they know me I am treated very nicely. The main pleasure beside the food is that they recognize you and greet you warmly, something that many restaurants in LA lack. It's not an Olive Garden, so relax and let them take you back to Italy. Lokk at the Chandelier and enjoy the ride.
09/20/2008Provided by Citysearch -
Mamma is a grand master of pasta. Get the bolognese. By far the best I've ever had. I have never had a bad meal here. My wife and I have been eating here since it was four tables where the patio is now. Always great service and excellent suggestions. Can't make up your mind. Let the waiters choose for you. They will never steer you wrong. Oh and I almost forgot about the wine, great wine that's hard to find most places.
09/14/2008Provided by Citysearch -
Oh My God! I ate lunch last week at LaBuca, absolutely, by far the best pasta ever. I enjoyed the pesto pasta with a glass of Proseco, then topped off with tiramisu and expresso. I thought I was Italy for a second.
I also recommend the caprese salad. I took a friend for dinner a year ago and she is still talking about this salad. And of course Filipo is pleasant as always. Thank you for sharing your Momma with us.
09/13/2008Provided by Citysearch -
I recently had a lovely experience at Osteria La Buca. I went with my boyfriend for dinner and we shared the most fabulous meal! Our Italian waiter greeted us with charm and a friendly tone and even brought us into a room to show us the fresh homemade pasta before they cook it so we could pick out what kind we wanted! We shared a few pasta dishes, their gnochhi and a burrata appetizer that was to die for! I would highly recommend this place! They also were great at suggesting wines to pair with the meal. For a romantic evening...Osteria is a perfect Italian spot;)!
09/08/2008Provided by Citysearch -
The food was delicious, except for the salad and dessert. Honestly in that department, I've had better at Maggiano's and I'm not even kidding. But the pastas are absolutely to die for, and the atmosphere was nice. So I would go back, minus the salad and dessert in favor of that wonderful pasta. The service was prompt, friendly... problem is, the waiter was pushing the wine and alcohol SO aggressively, you had to wonder. Is the food (quite expensive, small portions) not enough to keep that place open? We all know restaurants make a huge margin off the booze they sell, but to be THAT pushy about it... and then to literally make you feel bad for opting for ONE $40 bottle instead of giving in to the incessant $90 wine push was completely ridiculous! That alone will make me think twice about going back. A little advice to Mama, let the food speak for itself and tell your waiters to ease up on the ""pressure sales"" tactics with the alcohol. For God's sake, it's LA; we all have to drive home! A little irresponsible... and greedy... and annoying.
07/27/2008Provided by Citysearch -
I always order the same thing:
Salad with mushrooms and fusilli (sp?) vodka. It's so good it makes me cry. I can't comment on any other dishes.
The service, though, is phenomenal. I understand they've remolded and made the place flashier and more modern, but it maintains a warm atmosphere and uber-friendly and helpful staff: all Italian, all smiles. My favorite Italian in LA.
05/25/2008Provided by Citysearch -
I've been meaning to post this review for months and after another amazing meal I came home and made myself write this. This place is unbelievable. The pasta is perfection in both taste and al dente! My favorite part is the sauce - OMGGG - I am NOT a sauce person. I eat spaghetti with ketchup because I don't really like sauce. At other Italian restaurants I push the sauce off my pasta as much as possible, at La Buca I scoop up every last bit. We literally ask for more bread just so we have an excuse to eat more sauce. I'm absolutely obsessed with the arrabiatta. The tomatoes are so fresh, it's just the right level of spicy and it's the only arrabiata I've liked since I traveled to Italy a few years ago. I've also had the pesto - we love it on gnocchi - and the vodka sauce - both incredible. Ok, so we've covered the pasta and the sauce and now I have to talk about the tiramisu. I have to preface it by saying, I hate tiramisu. I tasted my husband's tiramisu at La Buca a few visits ago and could not believe what I was eating - soo amazingly moist with a very heavy coffee flavor. Now, everytime we go we have to order it. In addition to amazing food, La Buca's staff is very authentic Italian which matches the extreme authenticity of the food (we brought our friend who is from Italy here last month - this is the ONLY Italian restaurant she has liked in the US. she basically licked her plate clean - and she is PICKY!). Mamma, if you ever get to meet her, is ADORABLE! She was so sweet and I was impressed that she actually came out to meet her customers when we requested it.
I could write forever about La Buca. I honestly don't know why anyone would go to another Italian restaurant when they could go here. La Buca is in a world of its own. You HAVE to go and go often. La Buca is by far the best Italian restaurant in the city - what are you waiting for? P.S. I think I was supposed to shout out to Ricardo from our last visit and I forgot - YOU DA BEST!
05/16/2008Provided by Citysearch -
My December '07 experience: A German/English redhead, a Chinese Muslim and a half-Polish atheist drink raspberry brandy with a Spanish-speaking Lebanese dude at an Italian restaurant. Only in Los Angeles.
I highly recommend you eat at Osteria La Buca on Melrose. Recently renovated; they can barely keep up with the demand for ""Mamma's"" home cooking. Observe the oversized Fellini print on the wall and the custom wine bottle chandeliers hanging from the ceiling. Drool over the beautiful hostess as she attempts to translate the ingredient ""wurstel"" (in their Tagliatelle Viennese) by touching her own flawless cheeks. Ask for Marwan; you won't be disappointed. Salut!
03/10/2008Provided by Citysearch -
It was a very sad evening for us. What was once an awesome, charming, delicious and authentic Italian restaurant has seemingly gone corporate. The food has suffered. The atmosphere is now ""trendy"" instead of intimate and sweet. The love that ""Mama"" put in each and every menu item is gone, replaced by something akin to an upscale Macaroni Grill.
They do have an extensive/expensive and professionally designed wine list. It wouldn't surprise me if they opened up a sister location in Beverly Hills.
To the old La Buca: R.I.P.
02/14/2008Provided by Citysearch -
So we actually live around the block from this place and have been wanting to go here for awhile so we acutally saved our first meal here for valentines day this year to make it kind of special. We took the time to make a reservation 5 weeks in advance. When we arrived we were treated like we had no reservation and were made to wait with people that walked in off the street. When i mentioned to the hostess that we made a reservation she agreed in non english and just wrote our name down. This kind of set the mood for this place. We looked up the menu online and were prepared for what we were going to have since we are vegatarians and obviously can only eat certain items. We were given no notice when we made the reservation there would be a Pre fix menu on valentines nite and nothing from the normal menu was availiable. Seems like they TRIPLED their prices just for such a special occasion. KIND OF LAME for a ""neighborhood"" place.After waiting 15 minutes they finally seat us in the little side room where the heater is broken and basically it was like sitting outside with no heating source (which if it was summer it might be nice but unfortunately it was cold outside).. Anyways it took us at least 6-8 times to get the waiters attention to get another glass of wine. The food actually wasnt that bad. BUT the biggest,grossest, worst thing about this place and what will make us NEVER return was when we turned to look on the wall next to us and theres a big r@ach crawling around on the wall. When we alerted the busboy he said ""oh a cucaracha"" and laughed and smashed it on the wall much to our disgust and amazement. When we received the check the waiter asked how everything was we were like umm there was a r@ach on the wall while we were eating the waiter laughed and said ohhh okay and walked away. Not exactly the response we were wanting when we just paid 139.00 for a meal.
11/21/2007Provided by Citysearch -
We tried this place a few weeks ago and were blown away. It's a little far from where we live, but I'd drive there any day of the week. I believe the restaurant has been renovated recently with a new lodge-type feel that was very cozy. It took a little while to be seated even though we did have a reservation, and I wouldn't say the service was the best. BUT, the food was outstanding. We tried 3 types of pasta (spicy marinara, vodka sauce and one other that I am forgetting) and also got white fish. To start, we tried a calamari dish and a margharita pizza that was amazing. And we brought our own wine, so i can't comment on that. I really enjoyed this place and will defintiely be back.
08/09/2007Provided by Citysearch -
Large, light, fluffy pouffs of gnocci melt in your mouth along with the delicious pink vodka tomato cream sauce highlighted with shrimp. Everything is homemade, everything is fresh and flavorful, just as you would hope for.
The bread is warm and served with a flavorful, a bit spicy, marinara sauce.
The place is tiny tiny. MAKE A RESERVATION.
Regulars are hoping the upcoming expansion won't take away from the pokey charm, but from what I could see the last time I was there, the bigger version next door will feature a fireplace upstairs. That and ""Mamma"" in the kitchen will keep me going back for as long as I adore gnocci.
06/21/2007Provided by Citysearch -
If you want to feel like you're in italy when you eat, this is the place for you. No kidding. Run by all Italians, they speak Italian, act italian, and even have their Italian mother back in the kitchen cooking! Having that said, they are pretty strict with their seating time slots due to their extremely limited space (hence the name buca, which means hole in italian). But this pizza here is some of the best i've had and I frequently go there just for that. The pastas they make fresh in house are mezzo mezzo at best, and they don't have a liquor license (but you can bring your own bottle of wine for no corkage fee). It's definitely an experience, but don't expect to sit at 7pm and be able to stay all night cause their 9pm reservation time slots will be filled and you will be rushed out. Ma questa e' vita!
06/02/2007Provided by Citysearch -
Good news people - they are expanding into the space next door, so perhaps that will help with the 90 minute ""time limit"" on seating. Either way, my husband and I finally tried La Buca last week, and... WOW... unbelievably delicious everything (especially the sausage/mushroom pizza and gnocchi with pink sauce). Impressive wine list too. We received excellent service and can't wait to go back. In fact we are going to order pizza take-out tonight, so don't forget to consider that as an option too. The food is just too delicious for some of the negative reviewers to not give it a second chance... they're really missing out. Coming from a looooonngg background in the restaurant industry, I can 100% money-back-guarantee that every single restaurant known to man has had unhappy customers from time to time. That doesn't mean the food is not amazing. DEFINITELY give La Buca a try - I'm glad I did!