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Introduction....this is just the beginning - Forno Bravo Forum: The Wood-Fired Oven Community



New Forno Bravo Forum Feature

Forno Bravo Forum Community,

You will notice a new forum at the top of the main page called, "Ask Me Anything". This forum will be used for live one hour "Ask Me Anything" (AMA) sessions hosted by people who are knowledgeable in different areas pertaining to wood fired ovens. How it works:
- Each AMA will have a "sticky" thread where the community can post questions they would like answered during the live session. This will allow everyone to participate even if you can't be online for the live session. These questions will not be answered by the host until the live AMA; if you need an answer quickly, you should post it in the appropriate Forum area for the community to respond.
- Another thread will be posted for the live AMA. Registered users who are logged in during the live session can interact with the host by asking questions and receiving responses.
- The live thread will remain in the AMA forum to view after the session.

To kick off our AMA feature, we have invited author, chef and master bread maker and host of Pizza Quest, Peter Reinhart, to be our first host! Peter will be in the Forum on Monday, February 15th, from 7:00 - 8:00 pm EST. If you are unable to be online during the live session, you can post your questions in the sticky post. Peter will answer those questions during the live session on February 15th. You can view Peter's answers to your questions as well as what happened during the live session in the session thread.

We hope you enjoy this new feature! Please let us know if there is a topic that you'd like to have as an AMA and we'll look for a host!

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Introduction....this is just the beginning

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  • Introduction....this is just the beginning


    I'm pumped to find out about the existance of Forno Bravo and this forum!

    As you can tell by my user name I love pizza, it is the perfect food and is my favorite food.

    Three or four years ago my wife and I were planning on building a house and back then I had wondered about the possibility of putting in a small pizza oven in the kitchen for our use but back then I had no luck finding one that would work for us. But no matter as the house plans fell through then. Now we are back to planning on the new house and I decided to look about again for a source of a good pizza oven and vioila! Forno Bravo has been founded and is an answer to my prayers. We are presently working with an architect to design our new home and I'll be contacting him in a few days to inform him about my want for a built in wood fired oven.

    But I have a few questions that I hope some of you can answer.

    1) Which model? I think the Casa 90 would be perfect for us in size and price. Is this type of oven a good long lived unit? We would potentially use it 1-2 times a week.
    2) inside or outside? We would prefer an inside unit but do these things smoke too much for inside use?
    3) Any other thoughts our considerations that you all would recommend that we consider?

    I'm sure I'll have more questions, but will also be back to share other info. and experiences with you all too.

    Thanks for your time thus far and I do hope that some of you forum members can help us with the above questions.

    Talk to you later,

    Last edited by The Pizza "Common-Sewer"; 05-10-2006, 08:43 PM.

  • #2
    Cool, another Texas member! Welcome aboard.

    Go bigger than the 90, especially if you decide to put it outdoors.


    • #3
      Thanks Stuart.....

      Thanks for your reply Stuart.

      Could you explain your thoughts on the 90 and why I would need to go larger?

      Any info. you can share will be helpful and appreciated!

      Do you have one of these types of terra cotta based units personally Stuart?

      Thanks again!



      • #4

        I'm one of those maverick members of this forum that built a bread oven that I use occasionally for pizza. However, a word or two to back Stuart up. Ovens, like houses, your one suit, the beer fridge, the workshop, garage, follow one common rule: plan what you think you want, will fit, then double it. Once you start using your oven, especially if it's a built-in inside the house, you'll say, dang, I should have made it bigger. I'm sure James will help you out with the interior application. Good luck.

        "Made are tools, and born are hands"--William Blake, 1757-1827


        • #5

          Welcome aboard. As Robert said the other day, I've never heard anyone say "I wish I had put in a smaller oven." Still, the Casa90 is the best selling oven we carry -- it's a nice size, good price and it heats up fast and is easy to manage. That's the oven we have here at the demo kitchen in Healdsburg, and you can do a lot with it. The Casa100 is almost as popular.

          One good thing about the Forno Bravo precast ovens is that they are not "clay" or "terra cotta". Our residential ovens are real alumina refractory (refrattario aluminoso), just like our $10K commerical pizza ovens. You see clay ovens out there, but they are aren't as good. They don't heat up as fast, hold heat as well, or last as long. Our material is one reason why our precast ovens are the world's best-selling pizza ovens.

          I have both indoor and outdoor ovens, but if I had to choose just one, I think I would go outside. We're in California, and you really want to live outside much of the year -- our house gets pretty hot. I think that the original motivation behind the "outdoor kitchen".

          There was a funny story in the paper a few years ago, where a guy got caught embezzeling millions from the city (Chicago I think), and one of the examples of how he had spend his il-gotten gains was that he had both indoor and outdoor pizza ovens at the house they re-possessed. That me, Mr. Extravagant.

          Pizza Ovens
          Outdoor Fireplaces


          • #6
            Concerned about the "sewer" connection

            I'm pumped to find out about the existance of Forno Bravo and this forum!

            As you can tell by my user name I love pizza, it is the perfect food and is my favorite food.
            Well, I don't know if "sewer" and "pumping" are good are good subjects for your first post. That could leave a bad taste in anyone's mouth!

            Welcome aboard!

            You almost cannot go wrong...it's just a matter of how right your final decision will be.

            Yeah, I'm a hard-core pizza common-sewer as well.

            aka PizzaMan


            • #7
              LOL PizzaMan

              Thanks for your reply PizzaMan!

              I understand your concern about the "sewer connection".

              As I'm sure you could tell my user name is a play on words. A "Pizza Snob" might want to be called the "Pizza-Connoisseur" but since I'm basically on a quest (daily) to have Pizza I often settle for less than perfect pizza. So since I'm not a Pizza Snob and I'm willing to throw just about any pizza (tomato sauce based) down my throat, because "any pizza is better than no pizza", I fondly tell everyone that I'm a "Pizza Common-Sewer". Hey, it works for me.

              I must admit that I do know good pizza and am capable of generating some amazingly good pizza from scratch. I once worked for a Pizza Restaurant Company for a few years and was considered one of the company's finest at hand crafting pizza shells (crust). But I make so much better pizza on my own. The company I worked for made some pretty good pizza but these years on since I left their employ I've taken it to a higher level.

              I have for some time found it frustrating to cook pizza in a home range, it can be done but a wood fired oven is the method of preference to me. I can't wait to get one finally! I once disabled the locking mechanism on a gas range so I could cook pizza in the self-cleaning mode as ovens get way hot when they are burning themselves clean . "Kids don't try that stunt at your own home it could be dangerous"

              I must admit that I need to know more about the heat/smoke issues when one of these small ovens is inside the house as opposed to outside.

              When using one of these ovens I'm assuming that the door remains open during the firing/cooking process, correct?

              Is the sole purpose of the small door to simply snuff the oven when it is done cooking?

              I admit that I do get the point (made above) regarding getting a bigger oven than the 90, as Stuart and CanuckJim pointed out bigger is probably better, and since I've not seen one of these modular ovens in person I will likely consider them quite correct and go to a 100 or 110. I can't imagine that I'll not make bread too in the oven. I'm really good at making hand pounded Pita bread and that would be fun to do in a wood fired oven and getting a bunch of them in there at a time would be preferable.

              After having looked through the Pompei Oven instructions I'm certain that I am capable of building an oven from scratch by hand but I don't know if I'll go that route. Since I figure on acting as my own building contractor in the new house construction I'll likely be stressed, tired, and nearly insane by the time it's done and having a prefab oven that I install will be quite satisfactory enough for me and my wife. Besides aren't these units a sure thing where making pizza is concerned?

              PizzaMan, do you think that these ovens are a heat liability inside the house, especially here in TX? If inside would I see drastically higher inside temps while the oven is in use? Are they smokey too?


              TPCS (aka Bill)


              • #8
                Originally posted by The Pizza "Common-Sewer"
                Thanks for your reply Stuart.

                Could you explain your thoughts on the 90 and why I would need to go larger?

                Any info. you can share will be helpful and appreciated!

                Do you have one of these types of terra cotta based units personally Stuart?

                Thanks again!

                My opinion on larger is based on comments from James, Jay (jjerier) and others here on the forum. Currently I make pizza on my Big Green Egg ceramic charcoal grill. This kamado style cooker is very versitile, capable of cooking pork low and slow at 185 for 20 hours, all the way up to searing a nice steak at 800. Pizza is always good on this cooker but a bit stressful as the zone between too slow a cook and burning it is very narrow. More challenging is that I can only cook one pie at a time.

                I'm about to embark on a remodel of our house including a pool and outdoor kitchen, which of course will feature a wood fired oven. I still have not decided which route I'll go Casa 100 or or similar sized Pompeii. Which ever I decide I know I'll be in good hands with the very informative, encouraging and enthuisiastic group here on the Forno Bravo forum. With that I say once again, welcome!

                What part of the Republic of Texas do you call home?


                • #9
                  You've come to the right place!

                  PizzaMan, do you think that these ovens are a heat liability inside the house, especially here in TX? If inside would I see drastically higher inside temps while the oven is in use? Are they smokey too?
                  I am a little remiss to admit it, but there are a number of forum members more experienced than Iwith the brick and cast ovens. I think some of them can handle the question better than me.

                  But I have to say that cooking outside is one of the joys of the oven. I live in coastal California, where it is a great way to enjoy an evening with familiy and guests. It would seem a shame to leave the oven inside--for the reasons stated above--and miss out on some of the joys of outdoor cooking.

                  And yes, it would likely be a real pain in the panini to have the heat and smoke indoors. You're spouse--and whoever gets stuck climbing up on the chair to turn off the smoke alarm--will appreciate your carefully considering this one.

                  So take it outside, buddy!


                  • #10
                    The ongoing saga of oven questions


                    I'm in E. TX in Carthage, but when I build I'll be 34ish miles further Northwest of here in the Kilgore,TX area. We are not too far apart since you are up near Lake Dallas, that is about 2.5 - 3 hrs drive from me. I might need to see your outdoor kitchen when your remodel is done! If that would be possible.


                    Thanks for your reply. Regarding the inside vs outside oven installation issue. It is my wife who really wants it inside. I don't mind it inside as long as there are no substantial issues with heat/smoke, but I don't mind it outside really either. However, it appears likely that there are heat/smoke issues so outside is certainly most likely. Regarding entertaining outside, I do see the appeal, however here in NE TX our climate is not always as favorable as yours. In the summer we have 3 solid months of formidable heat and humidity, and in the winter it gets a tad colder than what you experience in CA, (but I suppose the oven would keep us warm in the winter!). Never-the-less the outside kitchen does have its appeal. I think we will likely go with the outside install because I pay big $$ to keep my home's interior cooled with "store bought air" (AC) I can't see having the HVAC system fighting a wood fired stove for supremacy while costing me ever more cash. Besides done right the outside kitchen would be very nice indeed.