An Efficient Kitchen is a Profitable Kitchen – Tips for Work Space Organization
The quote “time is money” is usually attributed to Ben Franklin, although there are earlier variations from others. We’re not going to worry about the source, but rather apply the principle to the most important area of any restaurant – the kitchen – and review some truths we have discovered in many years working with professional chefs and managers in the culinary world.
The biggest costs in any restaurant are food and labor. There isn’t much you can do to lower food costs unless you can grow your own vegetables or catch your own fish, but you can make your kitchen more efficient and lower labor costs by properly delegating tasks and have those tasks performed quickly and efficiently. The time it takes a highly paid chef to track down a spice he or she needs for a rarely-served entree is wasted. The time it takes a prep-cook to wait for a work space to become available so the day’s vegetables can be cut is also wasted.
Design is the Key
You may believe that you are limited by the available square feet in your kitchen, but that’s when you need to go vertical. More cubic feet may be available if you install storage bins, shelves or drawers and make them easily accessible.
Clearing the clutter makes for a smoother work flow and it’s is easier when you have a place to hang utensils, pots, pans and such from hooks or peg boards. Are your prep tables using their space in the most efficient manner? Is there refrigerated space available below the work surface? Click here to see our prep tables.
If possible, try to lay out your design into zones. A prep zone, a saute zone, grilling zone, plating zone and so on. This usually streamlines the flow and keeps the whole process organized. Obviously, every situation is different and depends on the style of cuisine, the location of cold storage and the location of exits, entrances and the dining area.
HotelRestaurantSupply.com does more than sell restaurant equipment and supplies. Our professional kitchen design team has over 25 years of experience working with restaurants and hotels who specialize in haute cuisine and others who serve hot dogs, and we understand how to lay out an efficient kitchen. Please call us at (800) 931-0116 if you are involved with a new kitchen project and would like some help.