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Alfa Ciao Pizza Oven Review

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True pizza lovers know that this dish is best made in a wood-burning oven at high temperatures. However, if you can't light a fire, don't worry—you can get the Alfa Ciao pizza oven and make this dish in an old-fashioned way without the hassle.

This portable wood-burning oven allows you to throw a pizza party anytime, anywhere. With its functional and sleek design, you'll feel like a professional pizza chef whenever you use it.

Alfa Ciao Pizza Oven: Quick Overview

The Alfa Ciao is a worthy successor to Alfa One. This outdoor pizza oven combines great, modern design with high functionality. You can set and reach desired cooking temperatures in less than 20 minutes, so you can cook a bulk of tasty pizzas for your guests quickly.

Product Specifications

  • Materials: stainless steel, ceramic fiber

  • Size: 35.5" x 28.1" x 46.3"

  • Weight: 176 lbs (top only), 198 lbs (top + stand)

  • Heating Temperature: 1000°F (500°C)

  • Heating Time: 10 to 20 minutes

  • Cooking Space Size: 27.6" x 15.7" x 35" (width x depth x height); opening 19.7 "

  • Baking Capacity: two 12"-pizzas at a time or 4.4 pounds of bread

  • Chimney Dimensions: 21.1" x 5.9" (height x diameter)

Pros

  • Quick heating time

  • Pizza is cooked in a short time

  • Sleek design that fits in many outdoor settings

  • Portability

  • Great for large cookouts

Cons

  • A bit on the pricier side

  • Heavy

  • Legs sold separately

Why Should the Alfa Ciao Wood-Fired Pizza Oven be Your Choice?

Alfa ovens are top-notch products that will please even the most discerning buyers. We've tried a few, along with their best-seller, the wood-fired Alfa Nano pizza oven, and larger ones like the 4 Pizze and 5 Minuti.

However, our vote still goes to the Alfa Ciao. Why is that?

Attractive & Compact Design

Alfa Ciao Wood-Fired Specialist Portable Oven

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Available in two colors (grey and bright yellow), the Alfa Ciao wood-fired pizza oven is a handy and attractive fixture for your backyard, porch, or any place where you plan to throw a pizza party. Its large, dome-shaped oven and high chimney ensure optimal use of the product, ensuring quick heating of the cooking surface.

While the stainless steel parts in this Alfa pizza oven are durable, the manufacturer has made its fronts even stronger by adding a powder coating. This makes the product retain more heat and resist many natural elements.

Additionally, the ceramic fiber insulation inside the oven helps trap heat for faster cooking time.

The Alfa Ciao is quite bulky and heavy, even if it is made of a lighter material like stainless steel. Without the stand, the oven already weighs almost 180 pounds. However, this is compensated by the product's durability and resistance.

Fast Heating Up

A conventional oven bakes pizza at moderate temperatures, while real wood-burning stoves cook at high heat, cutting down the preparation time in the process. Making pizza at high temperatures such as 1000°F results in tasty, evenly cooked pies with a smoky aroma and crispy crust.

With its simple yet functional design, the Alfa Ciao's cooking floor allows you to churn out wood-fired pizza in less than 20 minutes. The oven also makes efficient use of fuel for any desired cooking temperature, thanks to its patented Forninox technology.

The oven's refractory bricks emulate those of traditional wood stoves, preventing energy loss and ensuring rapid heating for crispier pizza crusts. While other ovens dry the crust out, the Alfa Ciao only absorbs excess moisture from the dough, giving your pizza a fine balance between crispy and chewy.

These bricks are interchangeable, so you can arrange them above the fire the way you want. Combined with thick insulation, these firebricks speed up cooking time, ensuring crispy and delicious pizza.

Convenient Setup

The Alfa Ciao pizza oven has a countertop model and a variant with a leg kit that can either be freestanding or portable.

A countertop pizza oven is a viable option if you plan to put it in your outdoor kitchen or an existing stand, and if you plan to leave it there for a long time. As you only need to get the cooking chamber and chimney together, it takes less effort and time to assemble.

On the other hand, the Alfa Ciao pizza oven with a leg kit comes in handy if you plan to move this fixture a lot. It has a rolling base that features four stainless steel legs and plastic wheels. Even with the additional parts, setup is still simple, allowing you to assemble this portable stove on various terrains with ease.

At first, the heavy parts of the Alfa Ciao wood-fired pizza oven might make it challenging for you to assemble it. However, you can be sure that not a single part or screw will move after you set it up in your kitchen.

Optimal Energy Consumption

Alfa Oven Cookout

A wood-fired oven is a great choice for camping trips or picnics in parks, where you can find plenty of wood to light a fire. Alfa recommends the use of charcoal or oak wood for preparing pizzas.

If you use wood, the logs must be properly sized (about 2 inches in diameter) to fit the oven floor. You won't need to replace the wood frequently, as the Alfa Ciao's dome shape allows heat to circulate throughout the cooking space properly. In fact, this oven burns only 5.5 pounds of wood per hour, even if it has a large cooking surface.

Unfortunately, the Alfa Ciao does not come in a gas model, so it might not be suitable for areas or locations where wood isn't readily available, such as the beach. However, if you're looking for a gas-driven model, you can check out the Alfa Nano pizza oven.

Other Additional Features

Not many residential pizza ovens can boast practical features like Alfa Ciao pizza ovens. Besides great build quality, Alfa installed a wide cooking surface (27") in this model, making it ready to bake multiple small or medium-sized pizzas or any other food items that are best cooked in high temperatures.

The oven also comes with a built-in pyrometer, allowing you to check how hot the stainless steel cooking chamber is. This can help you estimate the remaining cooking times for your pizza batches and adjust the wood needed for burning.

Alfa Ciao's ergonomic wood handle provides easy door opening and closing, which helps in draught and temperature control. It's made of wood, so there is no risk of burning yourself. The two holes below the opening allow you to set this door firmly.

The Drawbacks to the Alfa Ciao Wood-Fired Pizza Oven

As with most Alfa wood-burning pizza ovens, the Ciao variant is heavy. At 180 pounds, it might be challenging to move this pizza oven around. Luckily, Alfa offers a rolling base for this oven.

Another thing that other people will consider a disadvantage is the pizza oven capacity, especially for those who want to bake multiple large pizzas. While the cooking surface allows for several small pies to be cooked at the same time, the oven can only accommodate two restaurant-sized pizzas simultaneously.

The price is also a deciding factor. While the Alfa Ciao is now on sale at Alfa's for $2,199, this pizza oven is still on the expensive side.

How to Cook in an Alfa Ciao Pizza Oven

If you've used wood-burning pizza ovens before, then you'll be able to use the Alfa Ciao wood-fired oven with ease. As you light the fire and wait for the oven to reach the desired temperature, you can knead your dough and add your favorite toppings in the meantime.

However, you have to act fast—the pizza oven reaches temperatures of up to 1000°F (500°C) in just 10 minutes. The pyrometer on the side of the oven can guide you if you're making good time before popping in your pizza in the oven. It can also help you regulate the amount of wood, either by adding more or adjusting the oven door.

At first, you might need more time to bake multiple pizzas and other food items of your choice. My first Napoletana in this oven took more than 10 minutes! But when I practiced cooking in this pizza oven over and over, I was able to bake six pizzas in 15 minutes and please many hungry tummies.

Wrapping Up

With the Alfa Ciao wood-burning oven, cooking pizzas has never been easier. In less than 15 minutes, you can host an outdoor feast for your friends and family in no time.

Thanks to its sleek and robust stainless steel design, a cooking chamber able to withstand high temperatures, and a spacious oven floor for multiple food items, you can cook the perfect batches of pizza every single time.

Invest in an Alfa Ciao pizza oven now and enjoy great food anytime, anywhere!

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