Smart Company: Chicago Brick Oven
Carmen Parisi, Bill Paschen and Mark Digregorio are neighbors in a suburb west of Chicago. Among other common interests they share a passion for outdoor cooking and outdoor entertainment. In late 2006 the three realized they each wanted to purchase an outdoor wood burning oven and figured they’d save some time and money if they bought the ovens together.
After doing extensive research, they found that most residential, outdoor, wood-fired ovens bought in this country are imported. That meant once they ordered their ovens, it might be several weeks before they arrived and they were concerned that if the ovens were damaged during shipping, there’d be long and complicated overseas negotiations to get them repaired or replaced. Other complications inspired the three for their own innovative solution. While some of the ovens were made in the Old World, traditional wood-fired markets of Europe, they are primarily made for commercial use, they’re very heavy and looked complicated to install. Others they found were made in China.
That’s when the three entrepreneurs came up with the ideal solution for how they, and others, could get the best-looking, highest-quality wood-fired brick oven without all the hassles, worry and cost. They’d take the best of time-proven, classic wood-fired brick oven design, incorporate the best engineering and technology available, and come out with a revolutionary new brick oven that fits the needs of today’s cooking and outdoor kitchen and entertaining enthusiasts. And, they would be made in the U.S.A.!
It was September 2007 when the first prototype oven was completed and it just so happened that a neighborhood block party was about to happen in the creators’ front yards. With the best expectations, they put the oven on a card and rolled it out of the garage and down the driveway for all to see. When complete fixings to make pizza appeared you can imagine the interest and excitement. Children and adults alike were making and baking, talking and laughing and of course eating pizza all night long. “We put the guy who has been grilling hotdogs for years out of business in a hurry.” says Bill Paschen with a laugh.
“We knew that night that we were onto something great and it would be popular. We didn’t realize at the start the importance of communal cooking, it brings people together and creates an event in itself.” Paschen adds.
In March of 2008 Chicago Brick Oven displayed at the Hearth, Patio and BBQ Association and was received tremendously. Within weeks of the show they had forged relationships with Iron Chef like Mario Batali, Harmony Outdoor Living that creates a pre-build brick feature for the ovens and Belgard Hardscapes for the highest quality pavers for the outdoor kitchen settings.
Chicago Brick Oven was off and running with a good year as they doubled revenue in 2008 and then continued to double in 2009, 2010 and 2011.
Fire. Food. Friends.
Nothing warms a gathering like a wood-fired brick oven from Chicago Brick Oven. A beautiful focal point to your outdoor living space, an outdoor wood fired brick oven from Chicago Brick Oven will bring you hours of enjoyment and the most delicious meals you’ve ever served. We invite you to learn more about cooking more than pizza in an outdoor wood fired brick oven and join our growing community of outdoor wood-fired cooking enthusiasts.
You’ll love Chicago Brick Ovens if you are enthusiastic about:
- Extending your entertaining and living space to the great outdoors
- Creating unique, unforgettable dining experiences for friends and family
- Enjoying great food of all kinds, from pizzas and chops to roasted veggies and seafood