Efficient Kitchen Design

Maximizing efficiency in your kitchen design takes planning, research, and hard work. It doesn’t matter whether your operation is in the blueprint stage or is going through a remodel. The pressure to get it right can make the process quite intimidating. Winston has the tools you need to assure kitchen efficiency.

Industrial kitchen. Restaurant kitchen. 3d illustration

An Efficient Kitchen has Flow

Commercial kitchen equipment takes up a lot of room. It can be difficult to accommodate when trying to maximize efficiency. This can be one of your biggest challenges when designing a kitchen.

Research your plan for kitchen flow when deciding the best location for your equipment. The goal is to avoid issues in employee foot traffic. For example, do frequently used doors open into busy aisles? Do doors swing in the correct direction to avoid collisions with one another?

Making sure that you have the correct amount and type of equipment eliminates clutter from your kitchen. However, be flexible should you need to add equipment to meet future needs.

Higher foot traffic during peak hours can cause serious issues if not reflected in the kitchen layout. Traffic jams in the kitchen can negatively affect the entire service period, from preparation to serving customers’ orders. Ensure you allow enough space for multiple people to perform their tasks in the kitchen.

Don’t forget to allow for maintenance. Even the best equipment occasionally needs service or repairs. Equipment must be accessible from all sides, or at the very least moveable, so that interruption can be minimized. Otherwise, it will cause disruptions for your employees and make the repair tech’s job unnecessarily difficult.

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restaurant-dining-room
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Safety and Regulations

As with anything related to customer safety, your kitchen layout needs to adhere to health and safety regulations. State and local health departments are a prime resource for up-to-date information on regulations and requirements. Some design elements are simply common sense. Cooked food must be physically separate from areas where raw food is prepared. All food must be separate from dirty dishes, cleaning supplies, or any other material that could be harmful or toxic. The possibility of cross-contamination or food poisoning must be eliminated.

Employee safety is also important. If the layout is not ergonomic or puts staff in risky situations, physical injuries can result. Are counters and shelves at the correct height? Are floors made of material that can be easily cleaned (and kept from getting slippery)? Avoiding employee injuries isn’t just a decent thing to do. The financial future of your operation demands that you do all you can to keep your employees injury-free.

Let's Give it a Try

Now you know what you need to do. Put it into practice! Your end goal is to create a safe, productive, and efficient kitchen. A great customer dining experience always starts with a well-designed kitchen. Need help? Contact us!

Street Tacos for School Lunch!

When you were a kid in school you probably didn’t give much thought to learning about your future career from the lunchroom. I’d be willing to bet that your school district didn’t have a culinary program either, or street tacos at school. Times have changed.

This is Culinary Specialist Chef Ron Jones with Esteban Gonzales. We are the leaders of the student-driven taco recipe team at Greenville County School District, GCSD.

I recently returned from another stop on the School Nutrition Guru world tour. I’ve got to tell you they just rocked the cafeteria at GCSD’s Mauldin Middle School.

The day started with a visit to GCSD Nutrition offices, where I saw a familiar sight in Director Joe Urban’s office. He’s a true media wiz and grabs pics and videos whenever he can to show the pride he has in this awesome district.

Then we drove to Mauldin Middle to meet the student team that had the winning recipe in the district. I felt fortunate to spend time with them. The team members were Hunter Criswell, Esteban Gonzalez, Joe Urban, and Michael Harmon.

students love street tacos

Students line up to try the street tacos.

Let's Make Street Tacos!

The first thing the team checked were the taco ingredients conversions to school-level preparation. For example, the student design team’s original taco featured red onions pickled in red wine vinegar. The school version switched to white vinegar.

Then came the first taste test by the team. They agreed the tacos needed a replacement tortilla and a change was made and tested once more. Then on to the lunch rush!

Vicki Thompson is the amazing, energetic Cafeteria Manager at Mauldin Middle. Just ahead of lunch each day she holds a pep rally with her team. It’s incredible to watch. She has a constant smile and she and the staff LOVE their students!

This next part was really cool! Chef Ron grabbed the recipe team members and had them help build a balanced complete tray as it might look when the tacos will be added to the GCSD menu cycle.

Winston is proud to have CVap equipment in the GCSD kitchens!

Word gets around fast when just one kid says “free tacos!” The open hands below didn’t hear about it until they got to their tables with their trays which they promptly left to come back for a sample.

Why not become a friend and fan of Greenville County Schools Food and Nutrition Services Facebook page? You’ll see trends being set and breakthroughs happening. Just recently GCSD made the top ten list on the Food Research and Action Center’s 2016 Scorecard!! It’s not just about School Lunch, read about #schoolbreakfast too!!

You can also watch a short video about Greenville County SC’s newest addition to their lunch menu.