Foodservice Equipment & Supplies

FEB 2018

Foodservice Equipment & Supplies magazines is an industry resource connecting foodservice operators, equipment and supplies manufacturers and dealers, and facility design consultants.

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a pro you should know Another thing we're seeing more of is not completely open kitchens, but more of a glimpse or peek with some gray zones between an open and closed space. There might be more of a peek into a vignette where someone is rolling pastries or doing other prep work in the back. You might even see a dishmachine exposed. [This approach is] OK and is a little deconstructed, but it adds more energy to the restaurant. We just have to make sure everything is clean and looks good. FE&S: When does your involvement start? DM: Most of our clients come to us before they have a menu, but often continue to tweak the menu so we have to be ready to adapt. We encourage the kitchen consultant to push back and let us know if they think the kitchen should be more L-shaped or more square; we work together to find the best solution that works with the rest of the space. For us, it's all about col- laboration and not just accepting what comes to the table. FE&S: What has proved exciting with recent projects? DM: We built a semi-open kitchen and expansive catering production kitchen out of the Michael Jordan's Restaurant in Oak Brook, Ill., that offers an example of those adjacencies I was talking about: We were able to create a morning grab-and-go space next to the pastry station of the main kitchen. This means front-of-the-house staff don't have to walk through the whole kitchen just to replenish or receive orders. A common fallacy in the industry seems to be that a restaurant has to be open all day long to be successful, but we're finding that costs [much] more in labor, and there are ways to introduce design and efficiencies that allow res- taurants to capitalize on other dayparts without overextending themselves. We recently added a second res- taurant within six months at Midtown Athletic Club in Chicago based on the success of its first concept. The project started out small but went very high- end and it has been rewarding to see it doing so well. A common fallacy in the industry seems to be that a restaurant has to be open all day long to be successful, but we're finding that costs [much] more in labor.

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