oven education: how high the temp?

Can someone give me a couple pointers where to look to see stone deck ovens that can go to 700F? New competitor is advertising that as a “feature” and I want to be able to answer questions from my customers about such things. I’ll make my way over for lunch to see his cshop, but want good info from here as well.

Hey Nick,

I have been doing some oven shopping here of late and I can tell you that ovens that can “actually” hit 700 degrees seem to be few and far between. Roto-Flex is one that makes the claim. There are some electric decks ovens that also say they can do this. I am leaning towards a fish right now and they will max out around 600 degress…I have been told that is more than enough for a thin crust NY style pizza that I am after.

Say it ain’t so!..Another pizza shop in Grantville?..Nick you better just show them the road out of town…

Not Grantville, but the neighboring village where we have been drawing new customers since doing their fall event last year. Certainly decent people, and they may just waken “the sleeping tiger”. If we start taking losses of customers, then I may have to escalate the new menu items plan to accomodate the new challenge.

Not going to do too much detail here as their pizza guy may be particiapting quietly. Honest competition will lay out the stronger pizzaioli, eh? Sasso is a name rich in American Pizza lore from the generation after Genarro Lombardi. Gotta step up and represent if it turns into a tho’down :slight_smile:

Sasso: tallest mountain in Italy, olive oil, wine, NY pizza guys . . . . I got some shoes to step into

Sasso: Wears the biggest chefs hat in America :stuck_out_tongue:

you know who :wink:

Hi Nick:

Ovens may have a thermostat that reads up to 700 degrees but the oven is lucky to be able to maintain 500 degrees. Few deck ovens can maintain 500 degrees while in use. As I have said before that is just a wishostat. That’s why the manufactures do not have direct reading thermometers on deck ovens.

George Mills

Wood fired maybe?

At any rate, His pizza menu has to be somewhat limited, based on the cooking time at 700 degrees. We all know there is no way he can have too many toppings on that pizza, and have them cooked before the bottom is burned beyond recognition. So even if he has that oven, he may have a awesome cheese pizza, and even some version of a margherita, and some single toppings…but not all the specialty pizzas you offer.

I would also guess most customers will think their pizza is burned, coming out of a 700 degree oven, because of the charred bottome, even if its at the intended doneness. Thats a NY thing, vs the rest of the world.

Hopefully, some of my luck will rub off on you, and all his advertising will remind people to go visit the pizza they know they love, and not risk trying something new! New competitiors always make my sales increase! (that sound is me knocking on wood).

You Go Sasso!

A few years ago I worked with a fellow in Texas who was baking his pizzas in a stone heqarth type oven, gas fired, operating at 700F. His bake time was right at 2.5 minutes. His problem: Pizzas are crispy when they first come from the oven, but within a minute or so they are as soft and limp as a wet bar towel. We had to reduce his oven temperature to an honest 500F, extend the baking time to nearly 6-minutes before he got the pizza he wanted (one that would remain crispy for at least 5-minutes) Ultimately, he sold the stone hearth oven and bought a Q-Matic. Remember what I always say about matching your oven to your concept as well as your product.
Tom Lehmann/The Dough Doctor

My Montague double deck oven has no problem maintaining 575 degree’s and bakes an awesome pie.

Hi Socal Pizza:

Montague has a reputation for great equipment but I have never known anyone using their pizza ovens.

You state it has no problem holding 575 degrees. May I ask how many pizzas you are producing between 6 to 9 PM on a Friday evening?

Does your Montague oven have a direct reading thermometer that indicates deck temperature or do you have some other way to check deck and interior temperature?

George Mills

It is an interesting point about pizza that is cooked quickly has to be served pretty quickly otherwise it loses its good qualities.

I brought this up in the other topic that the Baker’s pride does sell overs with thicker floors than standard and brick ceiling, not sure if that means it can maintain 650F. In theory if there is more mass , the temperature should fluctuate less quickly.

I know also there’s a few pizza places out there, Di Fara’s in NYC in particular that is known for maxing out a Baker’s Pride to ~700F, however I am not sure how well it keeps this temperature.

Looks like the Montague has a few more BTUs than Bakers pride, and is lined on the sides and top by default with bricks.

I have a Montague deck oven, My problem is getting the bottom crisp. I have been cooking in a pan and when its almost done I slip it out and put it on the stone. It can only stay on the stone for 5 to 15 seconds or it will burn and still be soft. I tried a hand toss pizza with cornmeal on the bottom and it seemed it was better. I only make pizza every Sunday for friends. I am trying to develop my pizza so I can open a shop. I have a temp gage and the ovens are at 500F to 550F I have vents in the top oven that are half open. I think this will give equal heat to both ovens I think?

Can someone help me understand this? Based on what I have read, I thought you had to have a very high temperature to achieve a good pizza. Apparently the home cook is at a major disadvantage when trying to make pizza because standard home ovens only reach around 500 degrees. I read of people putting their home ovens on the cleaning cycle to get the temp higher and now I am reading that commercial pizza ovens only reach 500 degrees??

Any thoughts?

Hi David;

There is no comparison home to commercial ovens.

Pizza ovens are designed to put much more heat on the bottom of the oven than on the top.

Best way to bake pizza at home is to buy a baking stone and heat that stone to the maximum your oven can achieve. then place your pizza on the very hot stone stone.

Not perfect but about best you can expect .

George Mills

I run my deck oven at about 525F . . . but the 1.5" thick stone deck is a world different from my home oven and pizza stone. Just not the same. Good commercial deck ovens are also far more efficient transferring heat to the top when needed . . . better reflectivity of heat and waaayyyy more thermal mass.

Thanks for the replies. I am making what I consider to be a pretty good thin crust pizza in my oven with a pizza stone. I’m running it on the cleaning cycle and using a raytek temperature scanner and my pizza stone is reading 680 to 700 degrees and it only takes a couple of minutes to cook the pizza.

Is the stone of a commercial pizza oven the temp we are talking about or are you referring to the chamber of the oven? If it’s the chamber, how much hotter would the stone be?

My stones read about 500F most of the time since when are in and out constantly . . . and around 575F the rest of the time. I don’t have a high heat baking plan, so the 500F works fine. Too fast of a bake, and my pies don’t cook through, and the crust doesn’t stay crisp very long.

Tom - You mention that someone you worked with was making a 2.5 min pizza cooked at 700F which was crisp out of the oven but turned soggy shortly after. This is what I have noticed as well. My question is are all napoletana pizzas (or neo napoletana) subject to the same fate? If yes then it is safe to make the assumption that pizzerias in Italy or anywhere for that matter that do this type of pizza deliver a soggy pizza.

I realize that this style is better suited for dining in as opposed to delivery but since its quite different from what the chains and independents are offering I would like to offer this. Also it is my favorite kind :slight_smile:
(i plan to do only delivery and take out)

You are correct in your assumption. If the dine in customer needs a knife and fork to finish the pizza, there is no way it will ever leave your store anything but soggy in a box. Of course, you can always do what everyone else does, and that is to simple bake it at a lower temperature for a longer time to develop a heavier crisp on the bottom. Then you will have a pizza that will retain its crisp significantly longer for dine in, but no promises for delivery. Overall, I think this is the poorest pizza for delivery due to the very thin bottom crust characteristic. I would suggest experinenting with a slightly thicker crust, and baking the pizza longer to find a combination that holds up better in a delivery situation.
Tom Lehmann/The Dough Doctor

We have a fish rotary oven that holds 18 16" pies at once. it is set at 500 degrees and kicks ass on friday nights. the shelves are steel and always wondered if their stone option would make a difference in taste? 700 degree;s??? no way. That pizza would be burnt to hell in a regular stone oven