Lean, Green Manitowoc Machines Get 2014 ENERGY STAR® Partner of the Year – Sustained Excellence Award

April 14th, 2014

Energy-Star-Manitowoc-id-0452We have good news for all of you environmentally-conscious restaurateurs: Manitowoc Foodservice was recently named by the EPA as 2014 ENERGY STAR® Partner of the Year and given the Sustained Excellence Award. Yes indeed, one of our very favorite ice machine manufacturers has been recognized for its continuing concern for the environment and dedication to excellent equipment. Manitowoc, known for its superior kitchen equipment and ice makers, has consistently exhibited a commitment to environmental protection and energy efficiency while producing quality products. Manitowoc has been an ENERGY STAR Partner since 2001, with an ENERGY STAR portfolio comprised of 556 products, some of which are the Manitowoc ice machines we carry here at ShortOrder.

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What Is Scratch and Dent Restaurant Equipment?

April 7th, 2014

VulcanV60-clearanceGetting the best price possible on a piece of restaurant equipment is vital for businesses looking to save, but maintaining a bottom line can be tricky, especially for smaller businesses. And indeed, for these businesses, brand new restaurant equipment might be a little outside the budget. Fortunately, scratch and dent restaurant equipment makes a great alternative to paying full price for a piece of kitchen equipment. Clearance scratch and dent equipment comes in all varieties: ranges, ovens, fryers, holding cabinets, char broilers, griddles, hot plates, steamers, cheese melters, braising pans—you name it, you can probably find it at a discount.

So where do those scratches and dents actually come from? Not from misuse at the hands of another fry cook, don’t worry! Discounted scratch and dent restaurant equipment has just experienced a little freight damage. The equipment is still perfectly usable, and performs to the standards you expect from the top restaurant equipment manufacturers. In short, if you don’t mind a few aesthetic blemishes on a new range or fryer, discount restaurant equipment is an exceptionally smart addition to your kitchen.

Are you a business on a budget that has benefited from clearance equipment? What do you think about scratch and dent equipment? Tell us about your experience by finding us on Twitter or Facebook!

Trending Spring Vegetables for Your Restaurant Menu

April 2nd, 2014

fresh vegetables‘Tis the season for lush, leafy greens and vibrant vegetables to make their appearance on restaurant menus nationwide. Spring begins during National Nutrition Month, providing a great opportunity for restaurants to tweak their menus in accordance with the trend. The long list of vegetables that flourish in abundance during spring ranges from artichokes to zucchini, meaning restaurants have the utmost flexibility and a great arsenal of ingredients when firing up the restaurant equipment and concocting new spring recipes. Here, we seek to highlight some of the trendiest spring vegetables of the season:

1. Kale
This leafy green has seen a tremendous rise in popularity over the past few years, and it doesn’t seem to be fading anytime soon. Besides being nutrient-rich and full of delectable flavor, kale has the added benefit of being an extremely versatile Read the rest of this entry »

How to Choose a New Point of Service (POS) System

April 1st, 2014

POS systemsYour restaurant’s point of service (POS) system is what keeps your restaurant’s operations up and running. Transactions need to be handled quickly and smoothly, so POS terminals need to always be working optimally and quickly. If you are on the hunt for an upgrade to your POS systems, consider these 4 factors when choosing a new point of service system for your restaurant.

1. Durability

The construction of a terminal is a good indicator of its quality and ability to stand up to heavy use. To determine its reliability, examine (or get an IT pro to examine) the grade of the materials from which the terminal is made. Commercial grade material, though pricier, will ultimately serve you well, as it is made for intensive, extensive use. This is because POS’s made of commercial grade materials (rather than consumer grade) are constructed specifically to withstand the restaurant environment.

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ShortOrder SoundOff – Microwave Ovens

March 31st, 2014

 

Microwave Ovens
March 2014
 

Microwave ovens are an essential part of every kitchen. For commercial kitchens, it is important to use a commercial microwave oven as opposed to residential. Although residential microwave ovens are less costly, they will not be able to hold up to the demands a commercial kitchen brings, and they lack NSF sanitation standards.

Commercial microwave ovens are higher wattage which guarantees faster cooking as well as safer defrosting. They also have a more advanced heat distribution system which allows food to be evenly re-heated. The majority of commercial microwave ovens have programmable controls which not only makes it easy to use with one-touch start, but this feature also saves energy and is much more efficient.

Before purchasing your commercial microwave oven, it is important to consider how much power you will need.

  • 1000 Watt – This meets the minimum requirement and is recommended for small, limited use items such as the occasional sandwich meat or liquids.
  • 1200 Watt – This wattage is ideal for larger food items for both cooking and reheating. Most 1200 watt commercial microwave ovens come with touch pads and are cook time programmable.
  • 1700 Watt – This offers more power for bulk food reheating as well as a fast menu item turn around.
You can shop for microwave ovens here at ShortOrder.com.

Featured: Commercial Microwave Ovens
Model
Rating
Performance
Features & Specifications

Panasonic
5 Star

 

- 1700 Watts
- 3 Power Levels

 

- 66 Lbs

- 16.63″W x 13.19″H x 20″D
- Warranty: 3 yr. parts & labor

 


Amana


4 Star

- 1200 Watts
-11 Power Levels

 

- 73 Lbs

- 16.75″W x 13.5″H x 22″D
- Warranty: 3 yr. parts & labor

 

MDT4F12A1H
Amana

RC22S2

4 Star
- 2200 Watts
- 11 Power Levels
- 94 Lbs
- 19.25″W x 18.25″H x 25.5″D
- Warranty: 3 yr. parts & labor

 

Panasonic

NE-1064F

5 Star
- 1000 Watts
- 6 Power Levels
- 42 Lbs
- 20.13″W x 12″H x 16.5″D
- Warranty: 1 yr. parts & labor
Copyright © 2011. All Rights Reserved.

 

Caring for Cookware on Your Range

March 25th, 2014

range cookwareChoosing a range and observing range safety are just the first steps to keeping your restaurant’s kitchen running smoothly. Caring for your cookware is just as important if you want to make your restaurant equipment last longer and continue to perform optimally. Cleaning and caring for your cookware correctly and on a regular basis are the keys to making your pots, pans, woks, and other cookware last.

Here is a rundown of the 3 most common types of cookware materials used on restaurant ranges and how best to take care of them.

Caring for Aluminum Cookware

Aluminum is a lightweight material that works well for conducting a range’s heat quickly and can be made into a nonstick cooking item. However, because it is a lighter weight than steel or cast iron, aluminum needs care to ensure that it lasts longer. Try these tips for washing, drying, and maintaining aluminum cookware:

• Wash aluminum cookware after it has cooled down post-cooking so it won’t warp.
• Wash equipment using soapy water, but don’t let it soak, as the cookware can actually absorb the soap, lending food a nasty taste.
• If you encounter some stubborn food, try using baking soda or a vinegar solution.
• Never use metal utensils when cooking, and don’t use abrasive scrubbing brushes, as these can scratch any nonstick coating.
• To repair and brighten your aluminum equipment, use a white tartar or vinegar solution.

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Go ‘Beyond the Cube’ with Ice-O-Matic Portal for a New Experience

March 19th, 2014

ice cubesAre you usually indifferent to which commercial ice machines you use at your restaurant? We understand that when shopping for new commercial kitchen appliances, your purchase is usually highly influenced by price and product quality; so what if there was a commercial ice machine company that went the extra mile to show you that it cares about the lives that its products touch? Would that determination to connect to you and your business change the way you felt about that brand and its machines?

Ice-O-Matic, an ice machine and ice dispenser manufacturer, wanted to provide restaurant management and owners something tangible that clearly showed its dedication to the restaurant industry. The result is the Beyond the Cube portal. When entering this portal, you can instantly see that the main purpose of it is to serve others, not itself.

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Cook Up Something New for National Nutrition Month

March 17th, 2014

Vegetables on rangeHappy National Nutrition Month, everyone!

“But isn’t it always National Nutrition Month?” we hear you say. Well, it should be. But we don’t always pay the attention that we should to eating right and staying smart about what we ingest. That’s why the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics sponsors National Nutrition Month every March. This year, the theme is “Enjoy the Taste of Eating Right,” so we thought we’d have a look at ways to change the way you use your kitchen equipment so you can keep your customers healthy. Restaurateurs, use this opportunity to rethink your restaurant’s menu a bit. Don’t worry—you don’t have to change up your whole menu to accommodate this healthful holiday. Simply add a small section to your menu, adjust the way you are cooking some of your current foods, or add a one-month-only specials handout.

Here are some suggestions for menu additions this month for a salubrious celebration of National Nutrition Month.

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How to Deal with Bad Restaurant Reviews

March 11th, 2014

Unhappy dinersThe disgruntled customer: it’s an eventuality every restaurant will have to face. For one reason or another, every establishment encounters a patron who has a bad experience and who takes their complaints to the Internet review site of their choice. Whether it’s Yelp or TripAdvisor, these reviews carry real weight in a world where 81% of smartphone users said they used their smartphones to compare restaurants before choosing a place to eat (according to an NRN survey). That’s why it is truly to a restaurant’s advantage to learn how best to handle bad online reviews. In fact, if done correctly, restaurants can even turn negative press into positive marketing. Here are 5 steps to dealing with bad online reviews of your restaurant.

1. Keep Tabs on Your Reviews

The first step in handling negative reviews is to know what people are saying about you. While, yes, it is easier to stick your head in the sand and believe everything is peachy keen, it’s better to accept that people are probably talking about your restaurant. And the fact is, it’s better to know what they’re saying. Search Yelp, Urbanppoon, LocalEats, TripAdvisor, Zagat, Dine.com, and other review sites and mobile apps to find your restaurant and read comments and stories from reviewers. You may also receive reviews on Twitter or Facebook if your restaurant is active on social media.

Read the rest of this entry »

7 Tips for Range Safety in Your Kitchen

March 3rd, 2014

Commercial Range Burner SafetyAre you being safe enough in your kitchen? Ranges are a smart addition to any restaurant’s kitchen, but only if you take the right precautions when cooking with, cleaning, and maintaining them. Don’t let kitchen safety fall by the wayside when the dinner rush hits. Follow these 7 range safety tips to keep your kitchen hazard-free and staff-friendly.

1. Always keep your ranges clean. A clean range is a safe range. It’s also the most efficient, which is handy when the clock is ticking during high volume hours. Grease and leftover food pieces can catch fire if they are not cleared away from the range’s cooking area regularly.

2. Clean your kitchen floors. Liquids around a commercial range are a safety hazard, so keep your kitchen’s floors clean throughout the day.

3. Don’t store items on top of a range. This is what’s commonly referred to in the restaurant industry as “an accident waiting to happen.” Anything stored on top of a range, even if the range is off, is a fire hazard. Likewise, be careful what your store around the range. Flammable items should be kept in a different area of the kitchen.

4. Pay attention to temperature. Monitor the range, and never leave a hot range unattended. Always keep oven mitts and potholders nearby to prevent accidents and burns.

5. Watch for leaking gas. If your range has open gas burners, keep an eye on the flame to make sure it is a quiet, steady blue. If your flame is a sputtering yellow one, turn it off and inspect your range immediately.

6. Keep equipment safely upright. The traffic flow in your kitchen should be suited to the setup of your equipment, and vice-versa. Make sure your range is safely positioned so no one is in danger of rushing into it and knocking it over. This is especially important for light-gauge steel ranges, which weigh less and are easier to tip over.

7. Keep up with range maintenance. You should regularly inspect your range to make sure all connections are properly hooked up and all parts are in good working order. Also clean your range regularly to prevent buildup of grease or other solids.

If you have questions about how to buy a range for your commercial kitchen, check out 6 FAQs about Commercial Ranges or the ShortOrder buyer’s guide to ranges. Not sure which range to buy? Contact us on Twitter or Facebook, or call ShortOrder for free at 800-211-0282.

 

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