Foodservice Equipment & Supplies

JUN 2019

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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36 FOODSERVICE EQUIPMENT & SUPPLIES JUNE 2019 But even with single-purpose equipment, "there's usually a work- around," says Dwayne MacEwen, prin- cipal and creative director at Chicago's DMAC Architecture. He relates the story of a client who was making pizza in a deck oven, "which takes up a lot of real estate in the kitchen." When the operation started to expand and opened a second location, the client didn't believe installing a deck oven warranted the amount of space it would require. But customers were disappointed that pizza wasn't avail- able in the second location. The solution was to include the deck oven in succeeding locations and develop signature menu items, such as ƒatbread and wings, that staff could produce in it. The end result, MacEwen says, made "the 'deck pizza oven' a mul- tifunctional piece of equipment." Ventless speed-cooking and combi ovens are often cited as being among the most useful equipment for smaller kitchens. "With the emergence of speed-cooking ovens that don't require exhaust hood systems, it's become affordable for operators to offer menu items in a much smaller footprint," says Donnie Theriot, vice president of Kitchen Equipment & Supply Company (KESCO) in Pensacola, Fla. Gradishar says, "We've been putting a combi oven that's ventless in quite a few kitchens. Now you have a piece of equipment that has multiple functions. It's expensive, but look at the diversity you've just added to your menu." Allotting suf•cient space for product storage is another important consideration in small kitchen designs. "Oftentimes, what gets sacri•ced is the area for dry storage," says Theriot. Nona Golledge, marketing and operations principal for the Bakergroup, a foodservice consult- ing and design •rm in Grand Rapids, Mich., agrees. "Unfortunately, many times storage space is reduced when the footprint is tight," she says. "Inadequate storage space not only creates an inef•cient operation but could also cause the facility to be noncompliant with health codes." One way to help with the lack of storage, she notes, is by installing high-density shelving in smaller storage areas. Is Smaller Really Better? There's a general assumption that a smaller kitchen with smaller equip- ment automatically means cost savings. But smaller equipment can mean less production volume, and that can have a long-term effect on an operation's bottom line, says Theriot. "You can throw a lot of money at new technology [such as] smaller cooking equipment," he says. "But smaller is not always best because then you're limiting yourself as to how much you can actually produce." In addition to quantity limitations, smaller equipment can translate into longer production times, which can have a negative effect on service time and a domino effect on the entire operation. Golledge has seen design teams some- times question the size or amperage of ovens, for example. "If the equipment is reduced in size or quantity, the client •nds they are not able to produce items quickly enough due to a slower heat recovery time and equipment capacity, At the Roka Akor Japanese steak- house in Chicago, much of the food prep happens in full view of custom- ers. Proper place- ment of dishes and utensils becomes critical when tradi- tional back-of-the- house components move out front. Right-Sizing the Kitchen

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