Restaurant Equipment for a Gluten-Free Menu

Monday, June 29th, 2009

There’s a great recent article in QSR Magazine about how with more Americans being diagnosed with celiac disease, customer demand for a gluten-free menu at restaurants is rising.

If you’re a restaurant owner or chef who is considering offering a gluten-free menu, the article stresses taking care to make sure cross-contamination does not happen. You can do this by having a clean prep area for the gluten-free products. Also, flours should be pre-mixed and labeled, and the restaurant staff should be educated about how to handle the gluten-free items. A staff meeting might be a great way to get everyone together to explain just how important it is to keep gluten and gluten-free items separated so as not to cross-contaminate. Another important point QSR mentions is that gluten-free baked items typically have a short shelf life, so they should be prepared in small quantities.

Some restaurants that offer a gluten-free menu may want to ensure that gluten-free items are not contaminated by restaurant equipment used for gluten items. Having restaurant equipment that is dedicated to the production of your gluten-free items is a good way to ensure that there is no contamination.

Mentioned in the article is Chicago’s Swirlz Cupcakes, a store that bakes gluten-free items first and even tests the air for wheat flour and other ambient allergens so that they can work to keep that percentage low. There’s no doubt that customers sincerely appreciate this kind of dedication.

Another example in the article is Nana’s Cookie Co., a company that uses all stainless steel restaurant equipment, separate equipment for the gluten-free items, and they bake them only at certain times and on certain days.

Buy Restaurant Equipment to Make Gluten-Free Items

If you need dedicated restaurant equipment to produce your gluten-free menu items, ShortOrder.com has an impressive selection — and we have the lowest prices out there. From small appliances to Vulcan ranges, we’ve got all you need for your restaurant.

National Restaurant Association’s Employment Projections for Summer ’09

Monday, June 22nd, 2009

The National Restaurant Association (NRA) recently released employment projections for summer 2009, and the information is positive: It’s expected that eating and drinking places across the country will add over 381,000 jobs during summer. This is a 4.1 percent increase from the employment level in March of ’09.

Many are interpreting this good news as an indication that the restaurant industry is recovering from the economic downturn. Jobs in the restaurant industry play a large role in America, as there are 13 million employees working at about one million restaurants in America — which makes the restaurant industry one of the biggest employers in the country. In the next decade, it’s expected that there will be 15 million employees in the restaurant industry.

An article in QSR Magazine talked about the NRA’s projections, noting that the industry added jobs in May for the first time in 10 months, though U.S. employment growth remains negative. Because of travel and tourism in the summer months, restaurants typically beef up their staff to be prepared for an increase in traffic. Only the construction industry beats the restaurant industry when it comes to America’s largest creators for seasonal jobs during summer.

So which states will add the most jobs at eating and drinking places for summer 2009? New York tops the list with 32,900 jobs; Calfornia comes in a close second with 30,900 jobs; and Texas is third with 26,400 jobs. On the other end, because summer isn’t their peak season for travel and tourism, the states of Arizona and Florida will see a decline in employment.

Keep Up with Summer Restaurant Traffic

Does your restaurant typically see an increase in traffic during the summer months? Be sure you’ll be able to handle more customers by getting quality, reliable restaurant equipment. From Vulcan ranges to Vita-Mix Blenders, ShortOrder.com has the lowest prices on restaurant equipment.

Pizza Restaurant Equipment

Thursday, June 11th, 2009

Pizza restaurant equipment can be found here at ShortOrder.com. Pizza has got to be one of the most popular meals out there. And everyone has a different way of making it, whether it’s deep dish, thin crust, stuffed crust or thick crust. Extra cheese, pepperoni on top or under cheese, roasted peppers, pineapple, chicken, anchovies, sausage — the combinations are endless, really… and we haven’t even mentioned sauces. A hot, delicious pizza with fresh toppings is a pretty though thing to pass up.

If you are a restaurant owner or chef looking to purchase new pizza ovens or pizza prep tables, you’ve come to the right place. Our selection of pizza ovens and prep tables almost certainly guarantees you’ll find just what you need for your restaurant.

Single Deck Pizza Ovens

Our wide variety of pizza restaurant equipment includes single deck pizza ovens. One of the many units we offer is the Bakers Pride pizza oven GS-805-NAT, a highly rated, lighter duty unit. You may also consider the Montague pizza oven 13P-1-NAT if you’re looking for single deck pizza ovens.

Double Deck Pizza Ovens

Don’t miss double deck pizza ovens at ShortOrder.com. A good buy is the Bakers Pride pizza oven Y-600-NAT, which has a five-star and Editor’s Choice rating. This is a dependable lighter duty double deck pizza oven.

Pizza Prep Tables

Pizza prep tables can be essential to a restaurant that makes and serves pizza. We have several to choose from, made by different brands and available in different sizes. There’s the Randell pizza prep table 8260N, which has an Editor’s Choice, five-star rating at ShortOrder. It is 60 inches wide and features very reliable temperature holding. There’s also the Beverage-Air pizza prep table DP119, another recipient of our Editor’s Choice and five-star ratings. At 119 inches wide, this unit offers a large cubic foot capacity and product-cooling airflow — it’s an excellent value.

Pizza Restaurant Equipment and More

You’ll find more than just pizza restaurant equipment at ShortOrder.com. Find high quality and affordable restaurant equipment from Manitowoc, Vulcan, Frymaster and more. We’re also proud to offer a Low Price Guarantee that gives you the assurance that you’re getting your restaurant equipment for the lowest price. If you have any questions about pizza restaurant equipment, feel free to contact us. Happy shopping!

Guide to Buying Ice Machines

Tuesday, June 9th, 2009

There are a lot of different factors when deciding which of the ice machines is best for you. This Guide to Buying Ice Machines includes some helpful tips to ensure you make the best choice:

Ice machines are a critical component to the foodservice operator. They are expensive to buy, operate and maintain, but cheaper than buying ice by the bag!

Ice Machines: Sizing

The amount of ice used daily is rarely uniform. Consider the fact that you will use more ice in summer than winter and weekend usage is sure to be more than weekdays. Be sure you size your ice machine and bin to meet your peak usage needs.

Try not to base your decision solely on what your current ice machine does. Take into account the age and condition of your present equipment, as well as the surrounding air and water temperatures at your peak usage times. Production charts can be found on the spec sheets for each machine that will tell you 24-hour production under your particular conditions.

Ideally, your company is a growing one. Consider adding 20% to your current usage estimates to account for future business growth. Check out the sizing guide, to help guide you in your usage decision.

Ice Type

There are 3 types of ice: cubes, flakes and nuggets.

Cubers:

Cube machines usually come with two choices in size: Half Dice or Whole Dice. You can generally find the size of the cubes by looking on the spec sheet for the machine. These machines are the most popular, producing a hard cube that melts slowly and produces the best drink product.

Recommended for: Mixed Drinks, Carbonated Beverages, Ice Retailing, Salad Bars, Ice Dispensing

Flakers:

These machines produce small, hard bits of ice. They cool quickly and have a low production cost. Flakes mold to any shape and are great for salad bars, hospitals and limited specialty drinks.

Recommended for: Produce, Seafood, or Meat Displays, Blended Cocktails, Salad Bars, Hospitals

Nuggets:

Produces a softer, chewable texture ice that still provides a maximum cooling effect for drinks. In a dispenser, the ice will melt and stick together, so you need to be sure that the proper agitator kit is purchased.

Recommended for: Carbonated Beverages, Blended Beverages, Salad Bars, Produce Display, Hospitals.

Cooling Systems

Air-cooled machines are easy to install and cost less to purchase and operate. They are affected by air and incoming water temperature, and require more breathing room. The industry is turning to the more environmentally friendly, air cooled machine.

Water-cooled ice machines cost a bit more up front and are more difficult to install. While technically more efficient, are costly to operate due to high water costs, but because they put off less hot air, they will not raise the room temperature nor do they require as much breathing room. If space is an issue, you should consider the water-cooled machine, but make sure it does not violate any local water conservation laws.

Condenser

Remote systems are generally for larger ice machines, greater than 800 lbs per 24 hr. The condensing unit is usually mounted on the roof of the building to minimize the noise and heat put off. In general, the self contained unit is the way to go. It’s easier to install and is what you will find most places.

Operating Cost (major brands)

Manitowoc, Scotsman and Hoshizaki are leading popular manufacturers. The operating costs of electrical and water usage vary significantly between brands. Both Manitowoc and Scotsman ice machines utilize a system that efficiently minimizes water wasted and the cost to produce ice. The cost to operate a comparable Hoshizaki unit can be substantially higher than competing brands and is not recommended.

Reliability

Manitowoc and Scotsman ice machines are the most reliable in the market place. Available service reports rate both highly.

Ice Machines: Other Considerations

Dimensions: Before ordering, measure doors, hallways and installation space to be sure your new ice machine will fit – allowing for 5 to 8 inches of clearance above, behind and on both sides.

Connections: Electrical and water connections and the floor drain must be within 6 feet of the ice machine. Most machines are offered in a variety of voltages to meet your requirements, be sure you order the correct voltage. All connections must meet local, state and national codes.

Plumbing Requirements: Ice machines must be connected to a cold water supply and have separate drain lines for the machine and the bin.

Affordable Restaurant Equipment

Wednesday, June 3rd, 2009

Affordable restaurant equipment at ShortOrder.com includes everything from Cadco sandwich grills to waffle irons. And no matter what you buy at ShortOrder.com, you have the assurance that you’re getting it at the lowest price thanks to our Low Price Guarantee on restaurant equipment. If you find an item priced lower than it is at ShortOrder.com, we’ll refund 110% of the difference on an identical item from another dealer. This truly makes our store the best place to get affordable restaurant equipment.

We know that because of the rising costs of food, restaurant profits are suffering. One idea to handle this situation is to purchase affordable restaurant equipment, especially the type of restaurant equipment that produces popular menu items. An example is sandwich grills — these are affordable and enable you to quickly serve your customers a menu item that many in the industry currently consider to be one of the hottest and most popular.

Affordable restaurant equipment at ShortOrder.com isn’t just limited to sandwich grills. You’ll also find affordable restaurant equipment like hot dog cookers, ranges and char broilers, to name a few. We offer equipment from well known brands like Vulcan, Manitowoc, Frymaster and Globe. With such a great selection, you’re bound to find all the affordable restaurant equipment you need.

Shop for Affordable Restaurant Equipment

Restaurants looking to save money should shop for affordable restaurant equipment at ShortOrder.com. We understand all it takes to open and operate a restaurant and are proud to offer the lowest prices out there. Shop for affordable restaurant equipment today at ShortOrder.com!

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