Within the food service industry, there are several options for a prep table. While the basic function of the table will remain relatively the same in terms of providing a designated space to prepare food for customers, there are different types of tables which are better suited to certain needs and areas.
Designed to streamline the process of preparing and boxing orders for a faster operation overall, these tables are set up with ample storage below the table for storage of assembled pizza boxes. They are also designed with food-friendly materials such as stainless steel and plastic which won’t harbor bacteria.
Offering large table tops for a designated work space for food prep, work tables feature sturdy and sanitary stainless steel construction. Available in a variety of specification of lengths and widths to fit the dimensions of your restaurant with ease, this type of table offers a height that makes it easy to work at without adding strain to the worker. Most units come complete with a bottom shelf built in for added storage. The shape of the table top is also important with certain models offering a rounded table front for easy cleaning of crumbs, as well as back upturns which rest against the wall to help keep the kitchen clean.
Made to house specific equipment as their sole purpose as opposed to an open space for a work station, these units can be on wheels on galvanized steel legs for added ease of use and durability. A popular choice for this area of restaurant table is to choose models with raised top shelf lips for added protection to the equipment. This type of design eliminates equipment sliding off in the event of an accident. Choosing options on wheels helps with easy transport from one area of the kitchen to another as needed.
A multifunctional addition to any kitchen space, these units offer table tops for designated work stations with a lower section of cabinets to house essentials. These tables are crucial in a restaurant kitchen since staff will need ample space to perform tasks. The added storage is certainly a draw with this type of table, especially for smaller kitchens looking to maximize on space potential.
An open base table has no bottom shelf as part of the design. While an open base table design adds an extra layer of organization for overcrowded kitchens looking for solutions to storing items, a non-open base table free of the shelf has a few benefits. Some workers prefer working at a table without a bottom shelf because they won’t hit their shins by accident. It can also be easier to clean the floors underneath the table without that added shelf. Another benefit of choosing non-open base tables is the ability to place a refrigeration unit underneath the table to create a fully functional prep area for workers. With both types of tables having unique benefit, it may come down to deciding which factors are most crucial for the effectiveness of your restaurant.
A stainless work table is the ideal option for work space tables in a restaurant setting for several reasons. A stainless steel work table is sturdy in terms of the weight it can hold, especially when paired with galvanized steel legs. It is one of the strongest metals while still retaining a lightweight nature which makes it perfect for restaurant use. Stainless steel is also nonporous meaning it is incapable of harboring bacteria which is a major concern in food prep areas. The nonporous nature also means a stainless steel work table is highly resistant to stains from spills. Another benefit of a stainless work table is the overall durability. It will last for years while being scratch, ding, and dent resistant for a great looking and highly functional addition to any commercial kitchen. Resistant to heat and protected from rust by an invisible layer of chromium oxide created by the surface of the metal coming into contact with oxygen, the natural composition of this metal lends itself well to the needs of a commercial kitchen.
The AISI (American Iron and Steel Institute) is the originator of the industry standard numbering system used to determine the familiar 300 and 400 series stainless steel grading. While many people confuse the higher rating with being better than the lower figures, the matter is more complex than that notion. The figures are based on the composition of the various elements in the stainless steel. For example, a rating of 304 would consist of stainless steel of approximately 18% chromium and 8% nickel while a 316 stainless steel contains 16% chromium and 10% nickel with around 2% molybdenum. The main factor that gives stainless steel this rating is the amount of chromium since this determines the rust resistance level. So, the 304 would be a higher-grade steel since there is a lower instance of rust because of the composition.
While workers will do many tasks by hand in the kitchen, there are certainly methods to help speed things up to benefit both staff and customers. From food cutters and food processors to blenders and meat slicers, having the right equipment at the ready drastically improves restaurant operations. Obviously, there are a few factors to keep in mind when choosing these handy appliances such as whether an automatic or manual is ideal, operating capacity in terms of output speed, and other relevant factors. When working with meat, there are several solutions to help ensure safe and speedy practices such as meat grinders, slicers, and meat saws. Whether looking for a floor stand mixer for locations of high volume to keep up with orders or a smaller necessity to set on a table such as a blender with a one-gallon pitcher, adding appliances to the day-to-day operations of your restaurant can be a benefit to the staff well worth the investment. There are several great reasons to add these useful machines to your business. While these helpers are often accused of making staff lazy, the opposite is actually true. Kitchens that employ these devices see higher levels of productivity because staff is able to complete tasks such as chopping, slicing, and mixing in a fraction of the time while also focusing on other tasks at the same time. These tools also reduce costly accidents which can hinder the bottom line of profits, staff morale, and the customer experience.
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