No matter where I travel, pizza is a priority. Here are 12 of the most distinguished ovens I’ve encountered, either due to the pies they’ve produced or their distinctive looks.
Antico Pizza Napoletana owner Giovanni Di Palma utilizes three Acunto ovens in Atlanta.
Caffe El Triunfo artisan Marcus Spahr burns mesquite in the oven he crafted in the Baja backcountry between La Paz and Cabo.
At Farmstand 46 in Templeton, California, Tom Fundaro and Jed Lachance employ a domed oven that feasts on oak and sports a corrugated metal façade.
Frank Pepe Pizzeria Napoletana is a landmark New Haven pizzeria that opened in 1925 and remains known for coal-fired pies on Wooster Street.
Full of Life Flatbread (featured image) is the vision of former music industry exec Clark Staub, whose impressive clay and stone oven feeds on red and white oak in Los Alamos, California.
Nostrana is the Portland provenance of chef Cathy Whims. Her white tiled oven burns a mix of maple, cherry and alderwood.
Pizzeria Bianco is a famed Phoenix restaurant from Bronx-born pizzaiolo Chris Bianco.
Pizzeria Bruno features Peter Lutz’s take on Neapolitan style pizza, complete with a Stefano Ferrara dome named Bruno that survives on an oak wood diet.
At Prima, over the mountains from Honolulu, chef Lindsey Ozawa harnesses the power of Stefano Ferrara’s kiave-burning oven to produce thin-crust pizzas.
Sally’s Apizza is Frank Pepe’s longtime rival. The Consiglio family’s establishment dates 1938, resides down Wooster Street, and features their own coal oven.
Sotto has the largest Stefano Ferrara pizza oven in memory, with chef-owners Zach Pollack and Steve Samson monitoring the behemoth’s yellow tiled mouth, which turns oak and beech to embers in producing Neapolitan style pizza.
Una Pizza Napoletana is one of the few restaurants in the U.S. which has a single pizzaiolo preparing every pie. Anthony Mangieri moved from New York and still prefers Estonian white birch in San Francisco.