Eagle’s popular Golden Oven Pizza is now back in business
If you go ...
What: Golden Oven Pizza.
When: 4 p.m. to close seven days a week.
Where: The alley between Broadway and Wall Street off of Second Street, Eagle.
Cost: Pizza prices start at $12.99.
More information: Golden Oven will also deliver lunch orders of a minimum of seven pizzas with 24-hour notice. Delivery is free, and daily specials are offered. Call 970-328-1234.
EAGLE — There was something about the thought of a perfectly functional pizza oven sitting in a storage unit that Baker Smith just couldn’t abide.
That was the beginning of the revival of Golden Oven Pizza in Eagle.
Smith has been a valley resident for 45 years, employed mainly in the construction industry.
“I built (former Golden Oven Pizza owner) Henie’s bar for him,” Smith said. “Then, when Henie left for California, he had everything for a whole restaurant — tables, chairs and a big, quality pizza oven — stuck in storage.”
Smith was already contemplating moving on from his construction career when he latched onto the idea of taking over the Golden Oven operation.
“I am making the same pizza with the same recipes that Henie had,” Smith said.
The use of those recipes means the return of several signature pies, including the Dracula and the Transylvanian, which reflect the former owner’s Romanian roots.
“The Dracula is probably one of our most popular pies. It has gypsy pepperoni, gypsy sausage and gypsy bacon that comes from a specialty meat market in Denver,” Smith said.
As for his personal favorite, Smith is partial to the Da Vinci, which features Canadian bacon, tomato, mushrooms and artichoke hearts.
“I really like those artichoke hearts on pizza,” Smith said.
Along with its various speciality pies, Golden Oven has build-your-own pizza options with everything from anchovies to pineapple as options.
Pizza prices start at $12.99, and pizza sizes are 12-inch, 14-inch and 16-inch. Golden Oven also offers calzones, chicken wings (hot, barbecue, Thai and plain), garlic bread sticks, garlic cheese bread and salad, along with daily dessert specials.
Golden Oven is primarily a delivery operation, and Smith’s green pickup is a rolling advertisement for the business. The operation also offers pick-up from its kitchen location that fronts the alley between Broadway and Wall streets off of Second Street.
“I run into people all the time who don’t know that we are here,” Smith said.
Smith said many of the people who have discovered the pizzeria’s low profile location like to walk up and order a pie.
“They come over and watch the conveyor as their pizza comes out of the oven,” he said. Smith added that his youngest customers are the ones most enthralled by the oven operation.
“There are some kids who have been here 10 times already.”
Smith missed Golden Oven when it was gone, and he is thrilled to have the opportunity to bring it back to Eagle. He is also thrilled to be launching his second career.
“This thing here keeps me busy, sometimes busier than I want to be,” he said.
He works the pizza kitchen with the assistance of one other cook and a couple of delivery drivers.
“That’s all that a guy needs, as far as I am concerned,” he said.
Smith is also glad to be have found a local business niche.
“I came (to the Eagle Valley) right out of high school in Texas and I never left,” Smith said. “This valley has always treated me well and there hasn’t ever been any reason for me to leave.”