In a sense a commercial kitchen is always a work in progress; the kitchen changes and evolves in every day of its working life. Small new pieces of equipment are added, routines are altered to match circumstances and the installation of a major new item of catering equipment in the commercial environment will often result in changes of all kinds; what was once a natural pathway for the flow of materials might, for instance, become a potential choke point if the new piece of equipment is larger than its predecessor and thus impinges on what was formerly unoccupied space. The commercial kitchen is never a settled place.
Simple but true
It is also a trite observation to note that all of the equipment in a commercial kitchen has a finite working life. Even the hardiest items wear out with time and use. It is sometimes not appreciated, though, that this simplistic sounding observation can be applies to kitchens as a whole. After years of service a kitchen may simply grow obsolescent and the replacement of equipment can result in atmosphere that is not conducive to maximum efficiency. At this time the proprietor of a commercial kitchen would be well advised to consider a complete refurbishment to his or her kitchen.
There are, of course, more obvious reasons for a complete refurbishment to take place. A commercial kitchen might have to be expanded to meet the requirements of increased business. Or a change in health and safety regulations might also force a refurbishment on a proprietor. Whether the change comes because of success or because of less welcome alterations to the status quo, it should always be recognised that a refurbishment is an opportunity every bit as much as an inconvenience. If the new design has been well planned and carefully considered then the kitchen which emerges after the refurbishment is complete should be a marked improvement on its predecessor.
Horses for Courses
It is however always as well to bear in mind the advantages of consulting experts when one is considering such a major upheaval. A badly planned and poorly executed change could make things much worse than they were before. This is the point where the commercial kitchen proprietor, an expert in the field of running a business, should employ the assistance of an expert in the field of kitchen design in commercial environments. The expression ‘horses for courses’ has a more general application outside the world of racing.
An experienced designer of commercial kitchens will have the time and the experience to plan a layout that combines all the required elements to their best advantage. Not only blue prints and floor plans can be provided but also computer technology can be utilised to give the customer a ‘virtual walk through’ of the future kitchen, at a stage when changing the location of a piece of important equipment requires only the click of a mouse rather than the efforts of a straining team and also perhaps a qualified gas fitter or electrician. In this way any problems with a kitchen refurbishment project can be countered before they ever appear in reality.
posted on 11 November, 2015