The oven is hand rolled from terracotta in northern Portugal
Insulation & Brick Arch
The oved is insulated with cement, expanded clay, and ceramic fiber, brick arch is hand built.
The oven is sprayed with a soft layer of pigmented cork
This is a great traditional clay oven, one of our best sellers. It's very similar to our brick ovens in style and performance but is made from natural terracotta clay as opposed to brick. We recommend this oven if you will be using it for personal use (not commercial) and if it will stay "as is", not enclosed. 1-1.5 hour heat up time, nothing to assemble, will stay hot for a long time, 400F after 24 hours. The inside of this oven is a beauty to see - all one piece clay (see the video below on how it's made). The oven is very well insulated with ceramic fiber insulation, you can keep your hand on it while the inside is raging hot. Like all brick & clay ovens it will have some cracks. It will work just fine, they are more of a nuisance to the eye than to the oven. The exterior cork layer is supposed to waterproof the oven however in practice it should still not be exposed to the elements.
- The Origins. Clay ovens in Portugal go centuries back and yet have managed to stay remarkably unchanged. In the mountainous northern Portugal a clay oven is as common as a cup of espresso in Italy. We admit:our oven is snobbish but it's for a good reason: it's pedigree is hard to match.
- The Work. The core of the oven is made from natural terracotta clay. They clay is rolled by hand day by day allowing each layer to harden before applying the next one. Each oven takes weeks to be made. The clay shell is then fired in a huge old brick kiln to attain heat strength and that terracotta color. After this all sorts of insulation is applied to our oven: "leca" (Portuguese for expanded clay, i.e. clay heated to the point when it granulates), refractory cement, and ceramic fiber blankets. The dome is reinforced with a steel mesh and brick arch and chimney are added. The final touch is a layer of cork which serves to water-proof the oven, add color, and hide potential micro cracks. The result is a raging hot oven on the inside while only slightly warm on the outside!
- The Food. This oven is capable of producing food you will remember forever. Pizza, bread, slow roasts, lasagnas, focaccias, paellas, pineapple with brown sugar, you name it. The combination of clay, heat and wood imparts a unique flavor to food. You can also do rotisseries inside the oven! Rotisserie spits themselves are not included but there is a stand that will support 2 of them for roasting chicken, turkey, meat.
- The Details. The chimney is stainless steel. Lifting eyes on the corners are removable. Like any brick or clay oven this oven will also have its share of small cracks, both inside and outside. You can patch them with different high temperature materials like fire clay or fireplace mortar or just leave them as is, they don't bite. The temperature gauge is in Centigrade. Unlike the gauges on the doors which are generally useless (because the door is open most of the time) this one is inserted into the dome itself and therefore always monitors T! Like any brick or clay oven prior to the first use the oven needs to be "cured" which means running a few small fires a few hours each - we email detailed instructions on how to do this. It's a very simple but necessary step designed to eliminate all moisture from the oven.
- The Dimensions. The base of the oven is 39.3"x39.3". The corners are rounded off as pictured. The inside diameter of the oven (cooking area) is approx. 30". The chimney diameter is 6", the weight of the oven is approx. 1200 lbs. The oven is about 30" high. The door is 15.7" wide and 13.7" high.