So, you’ve decided to jump into the foodservice industry by opening a new concept restaurant. Or you might see an opportunity to take over and relaunch a failing one. Whatever the reason, keep in mind that the kitchen is the heart of your operation and the utmost care should be put into its design.
There are a few essential components of any commercial kitchen and it’s important to choose the right equipment for each one. With Covid-19 still among us, special attention should be placed on cleaning and sanitation. There should be different sinks for washing food, hands and dishes. Remember to include separate dishtables near the warewashing station to keep clean and dirty plates separate. Most importantly, your kitchen will need a utility sink for cleaning tools and disinfectants.
Among the most important equipment for your kitchen will be cold storage units. There’s a large variety of commercial refrigerators and freezers. Which ones to choose often depend on the size and shape of your kitchen. Undercounter cold storage units will save space and are convenient for cooking staff to quickly access ingredients. Refrigerators and freezers can be scattered throughout the kitchen or centralized in a specific area meant for all food storage.
On the other hand, the cooking area includes equipment such as the range, oven, fryer and grill and should be placed near each other. This is where the chef will finish each dish so you wouldn’t want him grilling a steak and frying potatoes in different parts of the kitchen. The cooking area should also be near the service area to ensure that the food is served immediately after it’s cooked.
All commercial kitchens need an efficient food preparation area. This is where raw ingredients are weighed, chopped, mixed and grated. Ideally, this area would be near the food washing sink. You will also need enough counter space for mixers, grinders, blenders and other prep equipment.
However, before you settle on where all your equipment will go, the most important factor to consider is whether your kitchen design exhibits efficient workflow. Your kitchen crew should be able to perform their duties quickly and safely with the least amount of moving around. A good layout will improve your chef and the team’s productivity. Remember that efficient lighting and non-slip floors are also critical to the smooth running of your kitchen.
Finally, before you sign the lease, restaurant regulations vary from state to state and are crucial for whether a business at your chosen location is viable or not. Fire codes, health codes and employee safety protocols are only a few of the items where strict ordinances apply. Now, with post-pandemic guidelines, there are even more regulations on the list. If you’re thinking about starting a new restaurant or remodeling your current kitchen, Restaurant Design Concepts can help! Call us for more information.