Do I have the right deck oven?

Hi, I am attempting to open a pizzaria in a location that previously had one. It was a small operation that sold nor more than 50-100 pies a day tops. I have the following equipment already: Hobart 60 ct mixer (h600), Blodgett 981 gas, double deck oven, ie 4 cooking compartments (without the stones, mostly because I got if for a song), and almost all the ancillary stuff like pizza prep table, etc. My questions, if anyone can enlighten me are:

  1. Do I have the right oven to make NY style, hand tossed, pizza, at a volume of about 100 16 inch pies a day?
  2. Should I put stones on all 4 decks, or even can I? (I plan to also offer baked pasta, subs, and chicken wings)
  3. What is the difference if I use 1 inch or 1.5 inch thick stones?
  4. Are there any problems with after market stones I should be aware of?
  5. Am I crazy for wanting to be a Pizzaolo?

I am in the process of commissioning the Oven and so that I can begin to practice with the dough, sauce, cheese and bake process. Any help to this novice would be appreciated.

Hi Riotown:

What you have there is a bake oven rather than a pizza oven

Only the lower ovens will do a good job on the crust. there is no heat applied to the upper deck it just gets the overflow heat from the lower deck.

You should get stones for the two lower decks only and if not equipped with thermostats that go to 650 degrees you should install one in each oven.

Each of the ovens are only 50,000 BTU not capable of putting out a lot of pizza in one hour.

During the busy evening hours you should get both ovens up to maximum temperature before the evening rush begans. Do a couple of pizzas in one oven the next two in the other oven to give the first oven a chance to recover. Keep switching from oven to oven that way to get maximum recovery time.

Use the upper compartments for products other than pizza.

Good luck

George Mills

George Mills

Thanks George, that was helpful. I could not afford the Bakers Pride that I had my eye on but thought that if all went well in the first 12 months I could upgrade from the blodgett. I suspect we will sell as much subs, pastas and chicken wings as Pizza so it might be just right for now. I was projecting more profit on the pasta than the pizza although, again, I had my mind to trying to do the best quality pizza even if at low volume that I could. I see that you are also in Michigan. I am in Lansing. Do you know where in Michigan I can purchase the stones?

Hi Reotown:

Michigan Tile & Marble Company
9317 Freeland St
Detroit, MI 48228 Map
(313) 931-1700
I got a lot of deck oven stones from them back when deck ovens dominated the industry.

If I recall I spoke to a fellow named Mike. It may be someone else now.
I always got an excelent product at a fair price.

George Mills