Advice, please

I do not post very often, but read this forum every day and know that there is a lot of knowlege here. I opened my first store in June in a town of 400 people. I am only open Friday, Saturday, and Sundays from 5- 9 (I am currently employed full time during the week). I really have no competition to speak of. Like every other restaurant, my sales are unpredictable and there are days when I wonder why I opened, and then there are days (like Sunday) when we just get buried with orders. I have only one oven, a Baker’s Pride 351 deck oven, and most of the time (90%), it’s capacity is sufficient. However, it really bothers me when we have to tell people that they’ll have to wait 30+ minutes for their pizza. I don’t feel I’m giving them good customer service.

Should I consider a second oven for that 10% of the time? I think I already know the answer, and the answer is yes - if I hope to continue to grow. I’m thinking also for those times that I see where an oven goes down to have at least one operating oven.

I know you conveyor folks out there will tell me to get on board with you and those problems will go away. There is another issue of space. My store is carryout only, no delivery and I am operating in about 600 square ft of space (Otis, I know you feel my pain).

Any advice, support, etc. is greatly appreciated.

You are already used to cooking on a deck oven. I would recommend a look at the Doyon PIZ3 or PIZ6. They are a deck style oven. They take up considerably less space than a conveyor with similar output, have a very short (15 to 20 min.) warm up time, and can (according to Doyon) match the output of the conveyors. I am currently remodeling my entire building. I have a PIZ6 on order.

An air impingement oven sounds like it might fit into your operation, and it wil certainly give you the increased production capacity that you are looking for without taking up al that much space. We recently had a chance to evaluate the new, PESI PS-3240 oven at the last Orlando Pizza Show. When paired up with the new, Hearth Bake disks from Lloyd pans <> we were able to get a good, authentic hearth baked characteristic on the pizza. The new, Lincoln FastBake oven is also in this same catagory as I am told the Middleby Marshall WOW oven is, but at a substancially higher price. Just something to think about and maybe make a point of taking a look at when the next pizza show comes up in 2008 (NAPICS) in Columbus, Ohio.
Tom Lehmann/The Dough Doctor

Wiseguy & Tom, Thank you both for your replies and your advice on the types of ovens that I should consider. I saw the video on outlining the construction of the Pesi oven and it looks pretty impressive.

The price is pretty awsome too at only about $9,000.00 per deck.
Tom Lehmann/The Dough Doctor

I mentioned the Doyon ovens to you because you said that you were baking on a deck. The conveyor ovens are nice. But from looking at the video…they look huge. Plus they seem expensive compared to the Doyon. Many, many, many people baking with conveyors though.

The Doyon ovens look equally nice, thanks.