This week’s Wordless Wednesday features The Central Catalog for November 2015! This catalog features our great deals on Central Exclusive cooking and refrigeration. Check out this blog for more info and request your copy today!
On September 15th I arrived in Stuttgart, Germany where both the TAKKT group (the company that owns Central) as well as our largest sister company, KAISER+KRAFT are located.
With their mission to provide “Alles für die Firma” (everything for the business), KAISER+KRAFT is the leading B2B supplier of everything from office chairs and desks to shelving systems and warehouse equipment. Founded in 1945, they are celebrating their 70th anniversary this year! You can view their product assortment in English on the KAISER+KRAFT UK website.
Located in the Southwest of Germany, Stuttgart is the sixth largest city in the country. Situated in a low valley surrounded by forests and vineyards, it is an ideal location for breathtaking views like this one.
View of Stuttgart from Alte Weinsteige (a traditional wine-growing section of the city)
Stuttgart is also sometimes referred to as the Cradle of the Automobile, in reference to the invention of the first internal combustion engine by Karl Benz in 1879. It is the home to automobile powerhouses such as Mercedes-Benz, Porsche and Daimler AG.
The home of Mercedes-Benz in Stuttgart can be found on Mercedes Street (easy enough, right?)
An additional cultural highlight I got to experience this past weekend was the Cannstatter Volksfest (or Wasen to the locals). It’s an annual beer festival second only to the Munich Oktoberfest in size, but featuring a lot more rides. It starts one week after the Oktoberfest every year, and draws about 4 million visitors from all across the world.
The Cannstatter Wasen Festival 2015 in Stuttgart, Germany
I’m looking forward to sharing all of the amazing ideas from this internship with my colleagues back home at Central in just a few weeks. If you have any questions about our company’s German ties, feel free to contact me at email@example.com.
Central is excited to announce we have been awarded with a Google Trusted Stores badge! Check out the press release below.
SEPTEMBER 8, 2015
Central Restaurant Products, which offers restaurant equipment and supplies, was recently selected to join the Google Trusted Stores program. To help shoppers identify online merchants that offer a great shopping experience, the Google Trusted Store badge is awarded to e-commerce sites that demonstrate a track record of on-time shipping and excellent customer service. When visiting Central’s website, shoppers will see a Google Trusted Store badge and can click on it for more information.
As an added benefit, when a shopper makes a purchase at a Google Trusted Store, they have the option to select free purchase protection from Google. Then in the unlikely event of an issue with their purchase, they can request Google’s help, and Google will work with and the customer to address the issue. As part of this, Google offers up to $1,000 lifetime purchase protection for eligible purchases.
Google Trusted Stores is entirely free, both for shoppers and for online stores. The program helps online stores like Central attract new customers, increase sales and differentiate themselves by showing off their excellent service via the badge on their websites.
Founded in 1981, Central Restaurant Products is one of the nation’s leading distributors of commercial restaurant equipment and supplies. Central has product consultants with industry experience available from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. EST Monday through Friday and from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturday at 800-215-9293. They also have a showroom open to the public at 7750 Georgetown Rd. Indianapolis, IN 46268. To shop online, request a catalog, sign up for email promotions or find their blog and social media platforms, visit CentralRestaurant.com.
In 2009 Central was acquired by TAKKT AG, the leading B2B direct marketing company for business equipment in North America and Europe. Headquartered in Stuttgart, Germany, the TAKKT group is made up of companies in over 25 countries, supplying a range of everything from commercial kitchen equipment and office furniture to packaging materials and supplies.
Last year I began a two year internship with Central Restaurant Products as a marketing analyst. My internship program offered the opportunity to spend 3 months working in Germany and exchanging ideas with our TAKKT sister companies.
At the beginning of August, I began a 6 week assignment at ratioform in Pliening, Germany (just 12 miles outside of Munich).
An aerial view of the Ratioform headquarters located in Pliening, Germany
Ratioform is Germany’s market leader for packaging, shipping and warehouse supplies and their business structure is similar to Central’s in that we both have an extensive print catalog as well as an online shop. We both strive to provide exceptional service and support to our customers with the help of strong internal sales and customer support teams. When I return home I hope to implement some of the strategies and ideas I have gained from my time at Ratioform to improve the online experience for Central’s customers.
Since a 3 month trip can’t be all work and no play, I have spent my weekends exploring. Munich is located in Bavaria, Southern Germany and is most famous across the world for the Oktoberfest; and although I can’t wait to go to my first Oktoberfest later this month, the city has so much more to offer. Below is a view of the Frauenkirche (Cathedral of Our Dear Lady), where the twin towers are one of the most distinctive landmarks in the city skyline.
A bird’s eye view of the Cathedral of Our Dear Lady (Frauenkirche) in Munich.
Munich is located near the Alps, Europe’s most extensive mountain range system (think: Sound of Music…) so on my first weekend, I traveled two hours South to obtain this breathtaking view from the Alps near Berchtesgaden, Germany.
The Alps near Berchtesgaden, Germany.
Stay tuned for part II of my adventure abroad for Central, where I will be spending a few weeks working with Kaiser & Kraft and Certeo, two other TAKKT companies located near the group’s headquarters in Stuttgart, Germany!
Did you know that September is National Food Safety month? If you did not, it’s probably because a successful restaurant operator knows that food safety is important every month…every day…and every hour. Their customers and employees expect it.
2014 is the National Restaurant Association’s 20th year of National Food Safety Month
According to the NFSM website, the event was created in 1994 by the National Restaurant Association to heighten awareness about the importance of food safety education. Each year has a different theme and for 2014 they highlight ‘20 tips for 20 years of National Food Safety Month‘ through videos, posters and training materials.
Step By Step; Week By Week
All the materials are based in ServSafe®Food Safety Training Programs and broken into four weeks of general themes: Week 1: Cleaning and Santiizing Week 2: Cross-Contamination Week 3: Time-Temperature Control Week 4: Personal Hygiene Week 5: Allergens Operators can use the videos and quizzes on the site to educate their employees about the issues in simple terms. For example, a week 1 video on Cleaning and Sanitizing explained how bar surfaces where drink garnishes are cut need to be treated the same as a kitchen food prep surface. The video continues by showing the steps to safely treat that surface. http://youtu.be/m8RT3JOUqXo In week 2, the quiz asks a question to remind employees to always store fruits and vegetables above meats in the refrigerator to eliminate the possibility of cross-contamination from meat juices. Future weeks will also include poignant topics, including a video where people with food allergies talk about the dangers of allergic reactions from cross-contaminated or non-labeled ingredients in restaurant dishes.
An allergen kit includes separate utensils to use when working on an order with a specific allergen concern.
Though the technique has been around since the 1970s, sous-vide cooking has just begun gaining popularity in the restaurant industry. Literally translated to “under vacuum,” sous-vide (pronounced soo-veed) cooking is a precise, controlled cooking method using water as a medium to transfer heat to product in a vacuum-sealed bag. In traditional cooking methods, overcooking is likely to occur due to the high heat involved. With sous-vide, you set the desired temperature you want your food to reach, as the food will only reach as high a temperature as the water bath it’s in. This way, your food will reach the exact temperature you want it to reach every time, with no overcooking.
Benefits of Sous-vide
The benefits to sous-vide are multifold. It allows you to achieve consistent, repeatable results with your food. For beef, your meat will have the same temperature from edge to edge, rather than the well-done ring you usually see around the outside of the meat. For tougher cuts, it won’t overcook the meats, and it breaks down connective tissues, allowing you to serve great entrees using cheaper cuts. Sous-vide allows you to create cook-chill items, where you can transfer food in it’s vacuum-sealed bag from the water bath directly into your blast chiller or freezer for later use.
Image Courtesy of Vollrath
First, you want to select the freshest ingredients possible. It’s important to remember, that sous-vide will amplify good AND bad flavors. Don’t even think about using that week old fish for your sous-vide! Next, you want to season your food. You can use herbs, marinades or the ol’ standby, salt and pepper.
Once you’ve got your seasoning down, you will need to vacuum pack your food. Place your food in an unsealed plastic bag, place the bag in a vacuum chamber and let it do its thing. You should have a tightly sealed, ready-to-cook bag o’ food. Now, it’s time to cook. Place the sealed bag into the water bath and let it sit for as long as you need it to cook. The bath will bring the food up to the proper temperature you set. Because the temperature of the water is set only to the temperature you want the food to be, you have a longer window of doneness than you would with traditional methods. Food can be left in sous-vide for a long time, as long as two or three days. The longer you leave it in, the more time the process will have to break down connective tissues, so if you’re cooking a tough piece of meat, it will come out tender.
Finally, once your meat has reached the preferred level of doneness, you have the option to finish the meat by searing it. Searing will deliver the familiar appearance and texture that diners expect to see on their meat. Searing also will raise the external temperature slightly. One of the risks of sous-vide is the potential of anaerobic bacteria developing due to the lack of oxygen in the vacuum-sealed bag. Searing after sous-vide helps kill off that bacteria.
In addition to meats, sous-vide is great for non-green vegetables, eggs, tempering chocolate, hold hollandaise sauce and more!
Where to Buy
Ready to get started? Central carries Vollrath’s complete sous-vide unit, which comes with immersion circulator, water bath and cover. Be sure to also check out Vollrath’s vacuum packaging machines and bags as well.
See It in Action
Finally, check out the video below, courtesy of Vollrath, which takes you through a demonstration of the sous-vide process.
Have you seen the YouTube video of the real-life fruit ninja who cubes half a watermelon in seconds with just a few cuts from his knife? He first makes two cuts perpendicular to the rind on each side for the watermelon, then separates the flesh from the rind with a circular cut. Finally, he scores the flesh with criss-cross cuts and places the whole melon in a large plastic bag. With a quick upside down flip he now has bag full of perfectly cubed watermelon!
Of course, the one step he forgot to mention is that you always need a great knife to make this job simple. If you are looking for the right knife to become a fruit ninja, we recommend using our Central Exclusive series knives. Plus, just in time for the summer watermelon season, they are on sale now through the end of August.
20% off Central Exclusive Cutlery
Central Exclusive products are specially chosen by our buyers for their quality features and construction at prices that provide significant value to our customers. In cutlery, we offer a variety of dishwasher-safe economy knives with hand-honed edges. They feature stamped, stain-free carbon steel blades for durability and textured polypropylene handles for slip resistance.
20% Central Exclusive Cutlery through 8/31/14
Choose from six models to find the right knife for each of your food prep needs. Included in the promotion are an 8″ or 10″ Cook’s knife, 12″ slicer, 8″ bread knife, 6″ boning knife and a 3 1/2″ pairing knife. We would recommend our 8″ scalloped edge bread/utility knife to tear through the tough rind of a watermelon.
But this offer is only good through August 31st, 2014…so order today.
Choosing the Right Knife for You
Cutting more than just watermelon and still pondering what knife you will need? Check out our blog on how to choose the right knife for any need. Click through to learn about blade types, handle construction and the best type of knife for your application. Of course, our helpful product consultants are ready to walk you through the different applications.
So, now that you’ve learned how to choose the right knife, and have saved 20% on your Central Exclusive knife purchase – it’s time for the demonstration via YouTube.
To kick off the release of our new 401 page catalog, Central Restaurant Products has teamed up with The Vollrath Company for an exclusive promotion. This promotion will be featured in both the catalog and CentralRestaurant.com, and will offer the food service industry 15% off all Vollrath products. Central carries hundreds of Vollrath items in stock, remedy and will ship the same day if ordered by 5 p.m. EST. This promotion will run through September 5.
For over 100 years, Vollrath has been a trusted name in restaurant equipment and smallwares. Their philosophy is to produce products that help customers outperform every day. Vollrath’s innovation and commitment to quality earned them Foodservice Equipment and Supplies“Best in Class” awards in 2013 for cookware, induction, table top and buffet and manual food processors.
Vollrath provides a vast assortment of restaurant and foodservice items, ranging from cookware, buffet units, food processors, kitchen utensils, mixers, warewashing supplies and more. The food service industry will find thousands of Vollrath products on Central’s website at www.centralrestaurant.com.
Shop Vollrath at Central
To find more information on Central’s exclusive promotion with Vollrath, visit CentralRestaurant.com. A catalog can be requested either on the website or by calling 800-215-9293.
Now through September 5, 2014, take advantage of 15% OFF all Vollrath products through Central Restaurant Products! Hundreds of items are in stock and ready to ship the same day when ordered before 5 p.m. EST.
Need help? We know how challenging it can be to navigate through the sea of information to find the right equipment and supplies for your establishment. We are here to help you make the most informed purchase and ensure you are confident in your final decision. Call us at 800?215?9293 to speak with an expert Product Consultant, or read through our Buying Guides!
*Same Day Shipping is available for orders placed before 5:00 p.m. ET Monday through Friday. Excludes holidays and days where shipping services are not available. Specific quantities subject to availability.