What Is Scratch and Dent Restaurant Equipment?

Monday, 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!

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

Tuesday, 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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Now Serving – February 2014 – 10 Tips to Interview Like a Pro

Thursday, February 6th, 2014

FEBRUARY 2014 A monthly newsletter showcasing the taste of cookware ISSUE 62
Now Serving

It’s almost Valentine’s Day, which means an abundance of flowers, chocolate, and dinner reservations. With an increase in dining out this time of year, now is the perfect time to upgrade your restaurant equipment. If you are looking to purchase a new piece of equipment, be sure to click here and check out the Gen2 closeout specials we are currently offering. With a variety of items to choose from, you should be able to find exactly what you’re looking for.

Did you know over $1 billion worth of chocolate is purchased for Valentine’s Day in the United States alone? What’s your favorite type of chocolate-y treat? Stop by our Facebook page and let us know! While you’re there, make sure you take a look at our one-day only deals! And if you review a product online, you will be automatically entered into ShortOrder’s monthly giveaway. Please join us in congratulating this month’s winner: John Holsonback!
Don’t forget to check out our clearance section. We have a wide variety of discontinued, and scratched and dented products that are all covered by the full manufacturer warranty.

In this month’s issue: 10 Tips to Interview Like a Pro, Valentine Milk Shake as a tasty Valentine’s Day treat, and our featured products: a Hamilton Beach Blender, a Beverage-Air Milk Cooler, and an Eagle Drainboard Glassrack.

Do you have any suggestions for us? We are always ready to hear from you. Please drop us a line anytime!

Ann Marie Hillier

10 Tips to Interview Like a Pro

How to Determine Which Candidates are Right for Your Company

Given that your staff is your top resource, it is important to make the most out of your interviews with potential candidates. In her article “10 Tips to Interview Like a Pro,” Dawn Cacciotti, senior vice president, human resources of the National Restaurant Association offers guidance for interviewing job candidates.

 

  • Conduct the interview in a quiet spot which allows you and the candidate to focus on the conversation.
  • Always show the same respect to candidates that you expect from them.
  • Include a variety of questions in the interview, asking candidates yes/no questions, as well as questions that require a more lengthy response.
  • Try to learn more about the candidate’s personality through questions that ask them to provide examples from their past work experience.
  • Make sure to ask follow-up questions which demonstrates genuine interest in the candidate’s answers.
  • If the position requires specific certifications, make sure that the candidate has the necessary background to qualify.
  • Focus on behavioral-based interviewing. Think about the common characteristics of your top performers and ask questions to determine if candidates also possess these traits.
  • Always pay attention to smaller details, such as non-verbal cues from the candidate. Did they come in and smile? Did they dress appropriately for the interview and the position?
  • Consider a test run, giving candidates the opportunity to work half days with their potential team (with pay). This will be a great way to reveal the candidate’s strengths and weaknesses.
  • Allow job candidates to ask you questions which can reveal their preparedness as well as enthusiasm for the opportunity.
  • Have closing comments prepared. Always thank the candidate for their time and interest. Even if you’re not interested in hiring the candidate, it is always important to remain courteous.

 

Featured Products
Hamilton Beach Blender
990
1 Gallon, Two Speed Motor
$940.00 delivered
Beverage-Air Milk Cooler
MS58-1-S
2-Section, 37″ Height
$2,211.00 delivered
Eagle Drainboard Glassrack
WBOB24-24
Threaded Drain, 36.5″ Height
$587.00 delivered
Click for more info! Click for more info! Click for more info!

Featured Recipe
Valentine Milk Shake
Check out this tasty Valentine’s Day treat from food.com.

Ingredients:

  • 2 Cups Strawberry Ice Cream
  • 1-2 Cups Milk
  • 2 Tbsp Strawberry Jam
  • 2 Ounces Cherry Kijafa Wine

Directions:

  1. Blend all ingredients until the shake is thick and creamy.
  2. Serve the milk shake in a tall glass topped with whipped cream.
Short Order
Frymaster
Vulcan
Manitowoc
Beverage-Air
Globe

ShortOrder SoundOff – Commercial Steamers – January 2014

Friday, January 31st, 2014

 

Commercial Steamers
January 2014
For fast vegetable cooking and reheating, commercial steamers are your best option. Since steamers use water instead of oils and butter for cooking, the food being cooked will retain more of its nutrients and natural flavors. Steamers are also known for producing faster cooking times, which in turn will increase productivity in your kitchen. In order to ensure the best results from your commercial steamer, follow these cooking tips listed below.
  1. Always preheat your steamer.
  2. Wait until after steaming to break up and season frozen vegetables, never before.
  3. When steaming vegetables, always use a perforated pan.
  4. Use a solid catch pan underneath any meat that is being steamed in a perforated pan.
  5. Make sure that the drain is 6 feet away from the steamer.
It’s also important to consider whether you prefer a steamer that is a convection steamer or convectionless. The main difference between the two is that convection steamers come with a fan which allows for more even cooking. And finally, make sure to only use a new AGA commercial gas flex hose with the purchase of your new commercial steamer. These hoses are designed to be extremely heavy duty and almost always have a brass quick connect. The plumber supplied home-type flex hoses are not built for commercial applications and are not NSF approved.You can shop for commercial steamershereat ShortOrder.com.

Featured: Commercial Steamers
Model
Rating
Performance
Features & Specifications
Groen
5 Star

 

- Convection
- One Compartment

 

- 62,000 BTU

- 21.63“W x 25″H x 33.38″D
- Warranty: 1 yr. parts & labor

 

Panasonic

5 Star

- Convectionless
- 5 Power Levels

 

- 2100 Watts

- 25.57″W x 13.81″H x 20.75″D
- Warranty: 1 yr. parts & labor

 

MDT4F12A1H
Cleveland

24CGA6.2S-NAT

3 Star
- Convection
- 2 Compartments
- 100,000 BTU
- 24″W x 59.21″H x 37.13″D
- Warranty: 1 yr. parts & labor

 

5 Star
- Convection
- Double-Stacked
- 54,000 BTU
- 21.75″W x 61.13″H x 36.13″D
- Warranty: 1 yr. parts & labor

Quick Service, Full Service, and Fast Casual: What’s the Difference?

Monday, December 30th, 2013

Quick Service, Fast Casual, and Full Service: What’s the DifferenceIf you’re starting a restaurant, you’re facing a lot of decisions that determine how your business will be run. From the concept of your restaurant to the kinds of restaurant equipment you’ll need, there are a lot of factors that determine a restaurant’s success. If you’re not sure what kind of service format would best fit your restaurant, read on for ShortOrder’s breakdown of the types of restaurant service formats.

First, the quick service restaurant, or QSR. Also known as “limited service” restaurants, QSRs are all about fast service and convenience. The price point of the average meal at a QSR is about $5, and the meal might include “combo” options for a better price with additional sides or drinks. QSRs have no table service, have simpler interior décor and ambience, and are often structured with a single service counter and/or a drive-thru. Although food at QSRs is known for being of a lower quality, a trend toward upscale food in QSRs is currently on the rise. Expanded menus with specialty items are becoming popular. Although QSRs can be difficult to manage due to a high turnover rate, they are easier to franchise. Popular restaurant equipment items in a QSR could include Gen2 fryers, Vulcan ranges, and commercial microwave ovens.

Full service restaurants, which can include both casual dining and fine dining, include full table service and a “sit-down” meal with a relatively extensive menu. There is a heavier emphasis on décor and ambience in a full service restaurant. Casual dining is often accompanied by a family-friendly atmosphere and professional but informal service staff. Fine dining has upscale ambience and a professional, knowledgeable wait staff. Casual dining restaurants can attract a wide customer base with better affordability and wide menu selection, but must compete with a wide range of full service restaurants. Fine dining establishments are known for their quality service, food, and wine, but may find it hard to compete with the lower price points of casual dining restaurants, QSRs, and fast casual restaurants in a poor economy.

The fast casual restaurant—a relatively modern term—is sort of a hybrid between quick service and casual dining. Fast casual is all about speed and convenience, but sets a price point between $7 and $10 per meal and aims for better service and higher-quality food. Recently, new fast casual restaurants have become more concept-focused, like the idea of the fast casual pizza restaurant, or fast casual potato dishes. The focus may also be on customizing your food order, so fast casual restaurants often have restaurant equipment like combiwave ovens to produce hot, customized orders quickly. Fast casual restaurants also have a wide customer base. However, like QSRs, fast casual establishments can also experience a lot of turnover.

More Restaurant Equipment and Tips from ShortOrder

Want to keep up with the latest in the restaurant and restaurant equipment industry? Keep reading What’s Cooking, and follow ShortOrder on Twitter and Facebook!

 

How Food Allergy Training Helps Protect Your Restaurant

Tuesday, December 24th, 2013

Food Allergy Training Helps Protect Your RestaurantWhile most restaurants do not require their employees to be certified food allergen experts, the right knowledge and training for your restaurant’s employees can make a crucial difference in reducing your liability. National Food Safety Month may be over, but safe food handling where it concerns food allergies is a year-round must. Ingredients that are commonly seen in almost every restaurant’s menu – milk, fish, wheat, nuts, shellfish, eggs – can have some uncommonly devastating effects on patrons with certain food allergies. It is estimated that over 15 million Americans are allergic to some of the most common kitchen ingredients, which could very well threaten their lives and your business in an emergency situation.

Fortunately, there are many steps you can take to ensuring that your staff is properly trained and educated about food allergies, so your guests can feel safe eating at your restaurant and your staff will feel comfortable knowing how to safely handle restaurant equipment to prepare allergy-sensitive food. The list of food allergy preparedness to-dos include:

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Holiday Tip: Restaurant Gift Cards Gaining Popularity

Monday, December 16th, 2013

Holiday Tip: Restaurant Gift Cards Gaining PopularityBecause there is less time between Thanksgiving and Christmas this year, restaurants are coping with a shorter holiday shopping season, and are looking for ways to make up for missed revenue. Fortunately, it looks like it is prime time to take advantage of the gift card. Overall, more than 80% of shoppers plan to buy at least one gift card during the holidays this year, according to the National Retail Federation’s gift-card spending survey. And as the economy improves, shoppers are moving away from retailer gift cards and willing to buy restaurant gift cards. Both full service and fast casual restaurants are faring well with this trend, with everyone from Olive Garden to Starbucks showing up as top contenders in the top 20 of a survey of most-desired gift cards by the Baltimore-based card-exchange company, GiftCardRescue.

So how can your restaurant capitalize on rise of the gift card? Here’s how to boost your restaurant’s gift card sales.

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How to Make an Inventory Form for Easier Ordering

Monday, November 4th, 2013

To make a restaurant kitchen run smoothly, there are a lot of factors that need to be accounted for. While having a smoothly-running front-of-house is a very important part of keeping customers coming back, it’s just as important for behind-the-scenes operations to run well. Restaurant equipment that functions optimally is one of those factors. With the right quality restaurant equipment, you’ll experience less downtime due to malfunctions, be able to increase rate of production, and produce dishes that are of a higher quality. In addition to great restaurant equipment, you’ll also need to keep the right amount of food and supplies in stock at all times.

There are two secrets to an efficient ordering process: an efficient inventory and an excellent inventory form. First, you should streamline your inventory process so you can take food inventory faster. It’s best to do inventory weekly. (While this may seem too frequent, it will save you time in the long run.) You should also be sure your space stays clean and tidy to help things go faster.

When it comes time to actually take inventory, you need an order form that will facilitate a quick, accurate count. Make one form each for each product or food category. Some might include:

1. Meat
2. Produce
3. Alcohol
4. Paper products
5. Cleaning supplies

Each order form should have at least 8 categories:

1. Description
2. Ordering unit
3. Price
4. Supplier
5. Weekday par level
6. Weekend par level
7. On-hand quantity
8. Order quantity

You’ll probably need to tailor your inventory form so it is specific to your restaurant, of course, but the idea is that you make it as comprehensive and orderly as possible. For example, “alcohol” could be further divided into “liquor,” “beer,” and “wine” and you might need to add a section for reminders to certain forms. When it comes to food forms, you should list each food product to mirror the order in which it is arranged on your shelves. (Dry, then refrigerated, then frozen is the most likely order.)

Restaurant Equipment and More from ShortOrder

How do you make inventory and ordering easier? What restaurant equipment do you use to make your kitchen run at its best? Find ShortOrder on Twitter and Facebook and give us your tips! You can also follow us and keep reading here at What’s Cooking to stay in the know about restaurant equipment and the restaurant industry.

Blender Equipment: All-in-One Efficiency and Healthy Recipes

Friday, October 25th, 2013

Among your business’ restaurant equipment, whether it be in a restaurant, coffee shop, or bakery, you may find a lonely, unused blender with untapped potential.  Sure, you break it out every once in a while to mince the garlic or speed up some vegetable purée, but there are so many advantages to a good blender that may motivate you to begin exploring your blending options.

Of the top advantages of having one of the best brands of blender equipment, the simple idea of efficiency is probably the first. By taking the all-in-one approach of combining ingredients, you eliminate the prep time involved in cooking three different courses with four different dips to match. Not only will combining raw (preferably local ingredients to ensure freshness) ingredients in one blender save prep time, it will also severely reduce the clean up involved afterwards. Without having to fire up the grill and get into the messy business of pots and pans, all you’ll have to worry about is washing the blender after a quick meal.

Another benefit of opting for a blended snack or meal is, of course, the nutritional benefit. By blending and puréeing your raw ingredients, you are facilitating a much easier digestive process and intake of nutrients and vitamins. The simple fact of the matter is that our chompers don’t physically break down food the way a high-powered blender can. The other nutritional benefit of creating a blended meal is retaining the maximum amount of proteins and nutrients within your food, much of which is denaturated or broken down when you introduce the element of heat through grilling, frying, boiling, or baking your vegetables. Blending food is also a fantastic way to get your day’s worth of vegetable and fruit servings without having to sit down and gnaw through it all over the span of a day.

Here are some of ShortOrder healthy blender recipes, easily customizable and full of purposeful nutrients:

    • Mean and Green: Try combining kale, green grapes, cucumber, and granny smith apple for a delectable combination of both fruits and vegetables. This eerily green concoction will provide guests with a burst of energy and improve general health.
    • Boost of Immunity: A mix of your citruses (grapefruit and oranges) with kiwi will pump you full of the Vitamins A and C you need to help guests combat the inevitable sickly seasons.
    • Hummus: Top-grade blenders are not restricted to making smoothies and fruit juices. Try throwing chickpeas in with a number of fresh ingredients (garlic, parsley, red pepper) to make a fresh, healthy hummus to serve with pita chips!
    • Soup: Puréeing vegetables such as broccoli or tomatoes for use in a warm, simple soup served with a side of bread can always be a great way for guests to enjoy something light and healthy.

 

Check out ShortOrder’s selection of blenders to see which fits your business’ menu the best! Have some favorite blender recipes of your own? Share them with ShortOrder via Twitter or Facebook!

The Gameday Essentials Checklist for Restaurants

Wednesday, October 16th, 2013

Has your restaurant seen an increase in action every Monday night since the football season started up? If so, there are a few appliances that your restaurant needs to have to be able to run a successful Monday night football event that will not only keep your customers happy, but keep them coming back for more.

The first item, and probably most important piece of restaurant equipment on our checklist, is a good draft beer cooler. Draft beer is more popular than ever, so it’s a good idea to keep plenty on tap to cater to guest’s tastes. ShortOrder suggests getting one with a 2+ keg capacity so that your customers have a few options to choose from. Plus, by using a Kegerator that has a multiple keg capacity, you’ll have a smaller chance of running out during a big game. After all, the last thing a football fan wants while watching their favorite football team play is to run out of beer.

Next on our list of essentials is a nice, heavy-duty commercial fryer. When you get a fryer from ShortOrder, you don’t have to worry about it breaking down in the middle of a football game when your customers are ordering a plethora of fried foods. If this happened, your customers would not be happy, and might change their gameday hotspot for watching the football game.

Last on our gameday checklist is the perfect commercial charbroiler. Any restaurant that caters to football fans knows that on Mondays it’s best to be fully stocked up on favorites like hamburgers and hot dogs, which are staples in the Monday night football fan’s diet. This is why you need a charbroiler that will grill a great hamburger every time.

So are you ready for next Monday based on our checklist? If not, contact ShortOrder today and let us take your kitchen to the next level.

Short Order | What’s Cookin’

A Restaurant Equipment Blog for the Enhanced Professional Kitchen

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