May 1, 2018 |

Conversation: Buddy Koerner, Folino’s Pizza, VT

By Denise Greer

Buddy Koerner (left) founded the pizzeria with his father John in 2012. Committed to a “it takes a village” philosophy, Buddy is pictured with Seth Desrochers, general manager


The wood-fired pizzeria is set in the Green Mountains and shares a 5,000-square-foot barn façade with Fiddlehead Brewery. The Koerners recently renovated a 5,000-square-foot former funeral home in nearby Burlington for its second location. The counter-service concept has a popular BYOB policy at both locations.


If pressed to put our pizza in a ‘category’ of pizza styles, I would say that it is half New Haven “Apizza” style and Neapolitan. Since opening in 2012, we have slowly evolved our pizza into what we consider to be the best pizza we can make. So our style is a reflection of what we think pizza should be.

Our dough is super simple. It is naturally leavened. We keep a starter alive, which is a symbiotic culture of bacteria and yeast. The other ingredients are flour, salt and water. But as any true baker will tell you these are not the true ingredients. The true ingredients are time and temperature and a never ending quest to experiment to improve. I believe that this is the key factor in what makes our dough different.

Second location: what did we learn? It’s too early to say. We have only been open for a few months. The one thing I can say is that there will always be unexpected obstacles and we were not short of them during this project.

BYOB — This decision was simply the fact that my favorite restaurant at the time was BYOB. Bringing a six pack into a restaurant and pouring your own glass is something everyone needs to experience. It almost makes you feel like you are ‘bringing the party.’ On top of this novel feeling is the fact that it saves money and customers can choose any beer they please — not just what’s on tap.