Foodservice Equipment & Supplies

OCT 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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OCTOBER 2018 • FOODSERVICE EQUIPMENT & SUPPLIES • 57 and schlep back and forth. The whole intent of these stations is to have ev- erything needed to assist the server, to make their life easier and enable them to provide great service. Instead of run- ning around the restaurant getting their 10,000 steps in, they're right there say- ing let me refill your drink or grab you an extra fork or run your card through and get you on your way." Aesthetics Matter While primarily intended to provide functionality that front-of-the-house staff need to perform well in a location that is as close to the point of service as possible, service stations also require design finesse. As they're typically in full or partial view (and smell and ear- shot) of guests, they need to look good, be well organized and fit the brand. The key, says Shove-Brown, is to embrace the opportunity to design service stations so they enhance rather than detract from the guest experience. "Guests are going to see them, so it's worth the time and money to use nice finishes and materials and to make them an integral part of the design," he says. "You don't have to hide them or mask them, but make them fit in." Simpson agrees, noting that, while in the past operators took pains to hide service stations from view, that's not as much the case anymore. As with open kitchens, bringing server functions into view can add energy and trans- parency to the dining experience. The trick, he says, is to deliver on that while maintaining pleasing aesthetics and acoustics. "You can take almost a residential approach," Simpson says. "Residential- style furnishings work really well for service stations. Maybe you have a beautiful table in the dining room with a water pitcher on top and a basket with silverware in full view versus hiding those things around a corner where they take up space and don't contribute to the atmosphere. Or maybe it's a marble- topped cabinet used as a bread station or a low cabinet that can be used as a dividing wall or that a touchscreen POS screen can be recessed into." From an aesthetics standpoint, Simp- son suggests looking at server stations through the eyes of guests. "Imagine yourself sitting next to it or across from it and ask yourself if it would bother you to look it at or take in what's going on there as part of your experience. That includes thinking carefully about not just what's in view, but also what guests can hear and smell if they're seated near a service station or passing one. All of those things have to be part of the discussion, and the earlier they're considered in the design process, the better." FE&S Employing a strategy of "hiding in plain sight," a service station in the second-floor dining room at Mi Vida Restaurante in Washington, D.C., becomes part of a feature wall. Photo by Rey Lopez, Under a Bushel Photography FOOD SERVICE ESSENTIALS SCOOPS INGREDIENT BINS SERVICE CARTS ORDER B M FOR SAME DA HIPPING COMPLETE CATALOG 1-800-295-5510 uline.com π SHIPPING SUPPL PECIALISTS

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