Adding pizza to your bar menu can be a strong move with the recent revival in popularity of pub food as a legitimate dinner option. Artisan pizzas top the list of popular foods to enjoy with a local beer, and it isn't too hard for your cooks to add a few selections to your menu. You will need to provide them with a good oven, though, as your standard restaurant oven is inefficient and not well suited to the artisan pie. The following guide can help you pick the best oven.
How authentic do you want to be?
A true artisan pizza is cooked in a wood fired pizza oven. This gives the crust a flavorful char and a pleasant texture, somewhere between crisp and chewy. If you plan on making pizza the star of your business, you may want to go fully authentic with a brick or clay wood fired oven; otherwise, a stainless steel version is adequate. If your main goal is to serve a tasty, but not necessarily gourmet, pie, a convection oven will probably get the job done.
What capacity will you need?
This will require a little bit of forecasting – how much business do you currently have, and how much is likely to switch to ordering pizza? How many new customers may the pizza bring in each evening? If you run a popular sports bar, for example, and expect to be turning out 20 or 30 orders an hour each time there is a game, then you need an oven that can handle that capacity. Wood fired ovens are quick, but you need one that can fit several pizzas at a time for high capacity pubs. A conveyor belt convection oven is a better bet if you need high capacity.
Do you cater or serve offsite?
If you cater events or serve food offsite, such as at festivals, you need a way to take your pizza-making prowess with you. For those considering authentic wood ovens, the solution may be the deck oven. These electric ovens use a preheated pizza stone. The pie is placed on the stone inside the oven and cooked. They are stacked ovens, so you can cook many pizzas at a time, and they are portable enough for a catering job or food truck-type event. You can even use them in the bar itself if you want artisan pizza without the hassle of a wood burning oven.
Contact a restaurant appliances supplier for more help in choosing the right pizza oven.