I owned a wood fired pizza oven (Forno Bravo Primavera 60) for about a year and recently moved into a new place where it was no longer possible to have the oven. Since I had become obsessed with making Neapolitan pizza, I knew I had to find a replacement. After months of research, I discovered the 2stone Inferno. I read as many reviews were available, watched all the videos, looked at all the posts on this forum, and decided to purchase the oven. Now that I've had it for a little over 3 months, I feel I've gotten to know the 2stone Inferno well enough to write a review.
The 2stone Inferno came in a wooden crate and a separate box for the pizza stones. Both were packed very well and there was no damage, not even a scratch, to any of the parts. It took about 3 weeks after I placed my order to receive the oven. I suspect it was because it was made to order. After unpacking, all the pieces fit together well and intuitively.
The 2 stone Inferno is made of heavy gauge stainless steel and has held up nicely over the last 3 months (see the below pic which was just taken without the pizza in it - I've done about 10 bakes of 2 hours average each so there's about 20 hours of run on the oven). There are numerous welds and it is very well constructed. The sheer craftsmanship and amount of steel is easily worth the price I paid. The only minor drawback would be that some of the corners were a bit sharp. When removing a plastic cover that I bought for it, the edges would catch the cover a bit. However, I was able to easily smooth them out with a Dremel. The burner, at 145,000 btus, can be slid back and forth with a metal arm that protrudes from the middle of the front panel. The hoses and valves are all heavy duty and high quality. One other issue I had was with the electric motor that spins the lower pizza stone. It's a rotisserie motor that spins at a low rate of speed. I think it got off track one time and it kept spinning and bent off the track. The metal sleeves that hold it in place had to be bent back into place. No big deal but worth mentioning as I maybe it would be better if there were a way to lock it into place. Both stones are FibraMent - the top stone is square and covers the entire ceiling of the hearth, the bottom stone is round and 15.5" in diameter.
A+. Willard made the entire process of buying the oven really enjoyable. Before I even bought the oven, we spoke on the phone and talked dough formulation, baking strategy, pizza opening technique, and our love of all things pizza among other things. It was a pleasure speaking with Willard and getting to know him. Once my oven arrived, Willard insisted on talking me through setup and operation of the oven. About the only way the customer service could have been better, is if Willard drove over to my house and helped me set it up. And you know what, I have a feeling he would have if I lived within driving distance.
The gas for the 2stone Inferno is controlled by the knob on the lower left of the front of the oven. It goes from a small trickle of a flame to what is best described as a flamethrower in just a few turns of the knob. The first time I ever fired it up, I actually found it a bit scary. However, now that I'm used to it, I love the sheer power of the burner. There's a switch underneath the drive shaft that turns on and off the rotating hearth. I've found that I prefer to turn it off when launching the pizzas and then immediately back on after launch. The flame can be moved from directly under the stone to more towards the back. This allows for precise control of top heat and convection heat. The amount of control available for this oven is so great that it's taken me quite some time to learn what works best. I've found that going off the size and location of the flame provides the most consistency. Oven temps of anywhere from 400F to 950F or higher are easily achieved. Going from a WFO oven to the 2stone Inferno, I was actually worried that this oven would be too easy. However, there is definitely enough of a learning curve that I've become more skilled at dialing in the perfect environment.
My wife says the pizza out of the 2stone Inferno is better than anything she's ever eaten from our WFO. Though I miss some of the magic and spirit of the WFO we used to have, plus the satisfaction of starting a wood fire and the artistry involved in oven management, I really appreciate the consistency of the 2stone Inferno. I always struggled with the top heat on the Primavera 60 - when the fire was big enough to provide adequate top heat, the pizza would always cook too much on the side closest to the fire. I was never able to achieve the micro blisters that you see in the below shots with my WFO. Also, when we have a pizza night with our friends, I can spend more time hanging out inside socializing and less time working on the oven. Does it cook authentic Neapolitan pizza? Well let me tell you - the Margherita in the below pics, which I ate last night was so delectable, I got what I like to call "elevated" while eating it. That's the word I use for a food experience so compelling and unmatched, you actually have a brief out of body experience - you know, where part of you lifts up and hovers overhead for a few seconds. The Tre Anelli 2010 Nebbiolo we paired with it just knocked it out of the park. Same for the brussel sprouts and smoked pancetta pizza. Both pizzas were baked in exactly 90 seconds.
The 2stone Inferno can be ready to bake pizza at 850F in 10 minutes - need I say more?
Room for Improvement:
First, as mentioned before, it would be nice to have the motor housing lock into place. There's a point, after every full rotation where the motor housing can move slightly if touched. If it does move at that point, it will bend out of the track and cease to work. I'm guessing it probably occurred while I was vigorously sweeping the hearth with a metal brush or perhaps when I turned it off when launching a pizza. It hasn't happened since, so it it possible the likeliness of this ever happening is low. Second, I think an on/off switch for the motor on the front of the oven would be a great addition. It's just easier to launch a pizza with the hearth standing still and reaching underneath the drive shaft to hit the power switch while holding a pizza on the peel is a minor inconvenience. I may construct a foot switch on an extension cord as a workaround. Third, a piezo ignition would be a nice feature. However, it may simply not be possible for a piezo unit, battery operated or push clicker, to withstand the constant 900F temps.
I love my 2stone Inferno. The oven is easy to operate, infinitely adjustable, precise, well-made, durable, and a great value. I would recommend the 2stone Inferno to anyone looking for what is probably one of the best alternatives to a WFO available in the market.
If anyone has any 2stone Inferno questions, feel free to hit me up on this post or in a personal message.