Posted By: Pizza Expert on May 21st, 2008
Went back to Mario’s of Boca Raton to have some Pizza again today. After hearing that Mario’s also has one of these $100,000 pizza ovens, I decided to see if I really could notice the difference. A previous post about Campagnolo in Boca Raton also made mention of their $100,000 pizza oven, which I have yet to see. Mario’s on the other hand proudly displays their oven for public viewing, almost like a trophy.
Is $100,000 for a pizza oven worth it? I mean are you really going to be able to tell the difference? Wouldn’t better ingredients solve the issue? I recently read an interesting article and it started a debate amonst my friends and I as to what difference pizza ovens make. We later found out that as you cook pizza in an oven, some ingredients vaporize, and these volatilized particles can attach themselves to the walls of the baking cavity. The next time you use the oven, these bits get caught up in the convection currents and deposited on the food, which adds flavor. Over time, more particles join the mix and mingle with the savory soot from burned wood or coal (basically the best fuels to use) to create a flavor that you can’t grow in a garden, or find in a new oven. So as you might notice some of the best pizza places in America (and the world) use ovens that have been burning wood since the 30’s. Some of the award winning places like Frank Pepe Pizza in New Haven and Sally’s Apizza in New Haven use ovens that are extemely old, dating back to 1925! I haven’t seen a place for a long time if ever that uses a $100,000 pizza oven and wins for best pizza in the country. Just something to think about if you are opening a pizza place. Mario’s and Campagnolo could definitely learn from this mistake. After tasting Mario’s of Boca today I will give it 3 out of 8 slices.