In a large mixing bowl, sift together flour, baking powder and salt. Add butter and buttermilk; stir until a soft dough is formed.
Sift dry ingredients in a bowl. Add room temperature butter and cut into the dry ingredients with a fork until the mixture resembles dry breadcrumbs. Add buttermilk and mix. The dough will be a bit moist. Roll half the dough into a ball and flatten on floured surface. Cut into six pieces with a scone cutter or simply cut into wedges. Repeat with the remaining dough.
Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and press dough into a rectangle about 3/4 inch thick and 4 inches wide. Cut into 8 even sized pieces.
Place on ungreased baking sheet and bake for 12 minutes. You can brush buttermilk on top and sprinkle with sugar before baking if desired.
Place the scones on a lightly greased baking sheet and bake at 425 degrees F (220 degrees C) for 10 to 15 minutes, or until golden brown.