Simple, yet well-designed, the Ooni Koda 16 Pizza Oven will give you restaurant-worthy pizzas in less than 60 seconds to cook. Provided that we reveal a few chef’s secrets to you, that we correct a few tips and that your passion is worth this substantial investment.

What’s a pizza oven doing in a tech section? We could answer the joke that this dish is inseparable from the geek cliché, in the same way as crisps and Coke. But it takes technological development to offer a propane oven that theoretically and safely gives 950 degrees Fahrenheit.

The Koda 16, from the Scottish firm Ooni, looks like a whale shark with a huge mouth that rests on its three retractable legs. The shell for this “sleek Scandinavian design” is made of weatherproof carbon steel, the ceramic fiber interior prevents the exterior from getting hot.

The beast weighs 17.8 kg for a width of 52 cm and a depth of 63.4 cm. Easy to store, then.

The flame comes from an L-shaped burner that covers two of the three interior sides, and heats a removable cordierite cooking stone. A graduated ignition button allows you to control the temperature. Connect the hose to a propane tank and that’s it: no assembly required.

Turn on the oven and wait about 20 minutes for it to reach the desired temperature. As the device has no thermometer, you have to go at random or assess the temperature with an infrared thermometer and point the laser in the middle of the stone. Ooni sells one for $55.

The fun begins with making pizza dough, for which there is a 223-page recipe book. Three secrets revealed here. First you need a special flour, called “strength” or type 00. Ideally, you need a little fresh yeast that can be purchased in some bakeries.

Then garnish and put in the oven, letting the raw pizza slide from the shovel onto the stone. And… it was a disaster on our first two attempts. The dough stuck to the shovel, it had to be pushed awkwardly and partially dismantled. But it did bake in a minute, it rose nicely and despite its ugly face, it was our best dough ever.

The Ooni team gave us the third secret: semolina flour, which we sprinkle generously on the dough and the shovel before baking. We were finally able to slide the raw pizza on the stone and turn it every 20 seconds, to watch it puff and sizzle for a minute.

On the third try, we finally had restaurant-worthy pizza.

By setting the Koda 16 to different temperatures, you can also bake other types of bread or just about any kind of meat. The Scottish company has multi-fuel models, using wood, coal or gas, at prices ranging from $399 to $1099.

At $829, the Koda 16 is pricey. Some competitors offer pizza ovens under $300 promising the same temperature, with a cordierite stone. We haven’t tried them, but the minimal documentation that comes with these products generally left us wanting.

We waited 45 minutes, but the temperature in the middle of the stone measured by our infrared thermometer never exceeded 870°F. we write. 860°F in the middle of the stone is perfect, you honestly wouldn’t want it to get any hotter. »

We’ll pretty much agree that baking pizza like a pro for $829 isn’t quite an essential need. A smaller model, the Koda 12, is priced at a more reasonable $549.

For outdoor cooking enthusiasts who are sometimes willing to pay two or three times more for their barbecue, one can only confirm Ooni’s claims: his Koda 16 is versatile, well designed, clearly made to last and give a remarkable high temperature cooking. The attitude and the complete information of Ooni, born of crowdfunding and which counts on an energetic community of users who multiply advice and finds, are also very attractive.