Imagine using one of our woodfired ovens to cook gourmet pizzas while you and your friends soak up the cosy atmosphere created by the wood fire...
Alfresco Midi™ Wood Fired Pizza Oven
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This is a letter we received from a customer in Sydney who conducted a great deal of research into wood fired ovens before he decided to purchase an Alfresco.

"We built our Alfresco Midi wood fired pizza oven in December last year.

I, like most of your private customers installed a pizza oven for the first time. The nature and durability of a pizza oven suggests people would rarely need to purchase a replacement pizza oven, for domestic use. As a result most of your domestic customers, before purchasing an oven, would be in the same position I was in, weighing up how a pizza oven would provide a good alternative for cooking food, especially on occasion when friends or family get together. Purchasing a pizza oven was a lifestyle choice. In our case the Pizza Oven was to replace a built in BBQ. I found the BBQ was being used infrequently. One problem with the BBQ was that the wind can take away a lot of the heat from the hotplates/grilling surface. A problem a pizza oven does not have.

When grandchildren visit, pizza cooking provides an opportunity for them to be involved in preparing and cooking and making good choices about healthy food.(especially in the context of health and eating disorders increasingly experienced today) Most youngsters like making a fire to cook their food. That process provides a great opportunity for intergenerational chat.

Once I decided to go ahead with the idea of purchasing a pizza oven, the challenge was to decide which one was most suitable. Prior to visiting suppliers, I thought I was up for building one from bricks, over a mound or support. It wasn't until I discovered that modern pizza ovens are built around a refractory dome that I decided that was the way to go. That process made for DIY pizza oven building, a lot simpler.

After trolling several websites I found the information supplied by Sydney Heaters and Pizza Ovens the most relevant to our climate, culture, lifestyle and also the most technically informative to help in making a final decision. For me the clincher in making the final decision, was not on price (there are cheaper ovens) but the quality of the refractory dome. I was sold on the idea that the single refractory dome provides no opportunity for fire cement to fall into cooking pizzas, as does a dome cemented together from several sections, an alternative that several competitors offer. I also thought the shape of Alfresco domes would return radiating heat back to the cooking arena better than some of the flatter/wider shaped domes. (I don't know whether my hunch here is backed up by science but my Alfresco oven does work well, as anticipated).

After sourcing most information from a good looking and easy to use website I found Sydney Heaters and Pizza Ovens staff were very helpful in answering a couple of additional questions, by email and phone call.

I constructed our oven on a platform topped with two hebel flooring panels. When it came to DIY installation, three people advised were sufficient. We slid the heaviest part, the dome, out of the trailer, up some planks to the top of platform and used dowel on timber side rails to position the dome over the insulation and fire bricks, finally lowering the dome using a car jack. Very simple, no hire equipment needed. Other components were fitted exactly as the printed instructions said. I posted the several pages of instructions on an adjacent wall so helpers knew where we were going, the pictures that accompanied the detailed instructions were also very useful. The idea of having all the components, including instructions for DIY building the pizza oven in one package, on a palette, made the whole process straight forward. Our Pizza oven turned out as good as your display model. My son in law, who helped me render the oven was also very pleased with his handy work.

When it came to test firing and using the oven, again the instructions available were very useful. After a couple of uses, I inadvertently put more fuel in than was necessary and the temperature rose to over 400 degrees celcius. That caused no cracking or problems with the oven. I find firing takes less fuel than I originally thought, no more than a bucket full of split, seasoned ironbark. On advice I purchased ironbark, rather than use other more readily available timber, as it burns with practically no smoke, and little residue. Our suburban neighbours usually don't know when we fire the oven, so little is the problem with smoke (usually in first 5 minutes when kindling is firing larger pieces of ironbark).

We are enjoying how to get the best value from our woodfired pizza oven. We like thin, crispy bases and have a technique to achieve that, without burning. I look forward to cooking other types of meals in the future.

Thank you for excellent service and a great product!"