In recent times there has been an increase in small commercial kitchens, and they are in demand more than ever before. Since we live in a world of creativity and innovation that actually offers multi-functional equipment options that could not be conceived a decade ago. It has been a tough task to create a small commercial kitchen layout for most experienced seasoned design professionals. Restaurant consultants should remember that flow and function equal success, which is totally true for small commercial kitchens.
An important tip for small commercial kitchens is to understand the culinary techniques that would be used along with the talent of a chef to multitask which actually becomes the basic foundation for their success. When chefs work this way multitasking, every opportunity is utilised which in turn means vertical space is utilised. This methodology allows the small commercial kitchens to incorporate as many multi-use tools as possible in order to offer the best level of culinary versatility. A saying by Alton Brown is “a tool with a singular purpose has no purpose in my kitchen”.
Therefore, in order to increase creativity, flexibility and efficiency, a restaurant consultant should add a few pieces of multi-use equipment into your small commercial kitchen to increase vertical space. We list a few examples of equipment that can give you an edge over your competition for a modest investment.
Small Kitchen Equipment Suggestions
A). Salamander – Salamanders are usually radiant heat broilers that are a part of hotel kitchen projects, although these are quite underutilized equipment. The reason behind this is that they emit a lot of heat, and it takes a bit of skill and finesse to utilize them well. If they are located within the eyesight of the chef, they can be used for not only cheese melting but also for broiling scallops or thin pieces of fish. They also help in quickly forming crusts on things such as creme brulee and crostini.
B). Modular Holding Cabinets – Restaurant consultants utilize modular holding cabinets extensively in the fast-food industry. These are wall or shelf mounted and can be configured to hold hot food items in various pan sizes from full hotels to third pans, which is a great idea for small commercial kitchens. This equipment works wonderfully to keep resting meat and fish warm until served, that too outside fast-food concepts.
C). Wall Mounted Refrigerator – These wall mounted units are often used in international markets, and these are very efficient as they make use of the vertical space in the best possible way. They are supposed to be very convenient as they are mounted to eye level and arm’s length increase speed and productivity too in small commercial kitchen designs and trends.
D). Energy Efficiency – Since even small commercial kitchens use a lot of electricity, a restaurant consultant should be mindful of the energy usage in the outlet, by having a right layout of the equipment that ensures heat sources like ovens and ranges are not placed beside the refrigerator or a freezer. This will need extra energy to cool foodstuff or else there could be spoilage of food. Also, high-cost energy appliances with low energy consumption are cost-effective in the long term.
Designing a commercial kitchen is like organizing the steps to a recipe, by creating an outline or product flow starting from raw ingredients all the way to the finished product. Each individual step is broken down into basic culinary principles and strategies are implemented to execute them while the highest quality of hygiene and sanitary standards are maintained. With these basic culinary steps in place, a small commercial workable kitchen could become a powerhouse of productivity. A restaurant consultant has to choose the right equipment solution for their small commercial kitchen to bring true value to the project. The right strategy for success has to combine with extensive knowledge of commercial equipment to create a kitchen that will perfectly execute the planned agenda.