Category Archives: Buying Guide

Dinnerware Material: China vs. Plastic

Deciding which type of dinnerware to feature in your food service operation can be daunting. There’s just so many options to choose from and several questions to ask. Will it coordinate with the current setup? Can it enhance the dining room ambiance? Will it withstand heavy use, or will it need replaced frequently?

At Central Restaurant Products, we offer hundreds of different types, styles, designs, and patterns from some of the most popular manufacturers of commercial dinnerware in the world. When shopping for dinnerware, you’re likely to come across the construction material in the features, but what does this really mean?

Not all plates, platters or bowls are created equal. Even though ceramic and plasticware are the two primary umbrella categories, not all plastic dinnerware will guarantee the same degree of durability. How will the construction of your dinnerware impact your overall bottom line? What’s the benefit of opting for a melamine collection, say, than traditional china? What’s the difference between all the different types of plastic materials? Shopping for new dinnerware can be loads of fun, but it can also be stressful if you’re not fully aware of the quality you may be receiving. Here, we seek to shed some light.

Ceramic and Fine Chinaware

Traditional chinaware is made of a durable ceramic material that is biscuit-fired at high temperatures and then glazed fired at a lower temperature. There are two common types of china dinnerware that you’re likely to come across in your search.

Porcelain china is constructed out of combination of rock minerals and clay including feldspar, quartz, and kaolin. Porcelain chinaware is usually the less expensive china solution and has a noticeably heavier weight than bone china; however, the brittle composition usually results in more frequent chipping, thus needing replaced more often.

Porcelain China Dinnerware

Central Model #474-483

Bone china dinnerware is constructed out of a more finely grated composition, still including the same minerals as porcelain china, but with added ox bone ash which enhances its durability. Fine bone china is often considered to create a more upscale, fine dining appearance. It’s thinner and lighter than its porcelain sibling, but runs at a higher price point. However, with its stronger durability, it will need replaced far less frequently. A classic case of you get what you pay for.

Fine Bone China Dinner Plate

Central Model #60K-806

A good test to see if your existing chinaware is porcelain or bone is to hold it up to a light fixture. If there is no trace of light shining through, you are most likely holding a piece of everyday porcelain ceramic dinnerware. Chinaware with the added ox bone ash element will allow some light to shine through.

High end chinaware is often ideal for upscale, fine dining establishments. Nice china can set the mood of the dining room, enhancing the theme, presentation, and creating personality. It holds many benefits for the front and back of the house, acting as a canvas ready for the chef’s masterpiece.

China that’s 100% vitrified works to prevent crazing and cracking that lead to bacterial growth over time, thus enhancing sanitation and food safety efforts. Fully vitrified china means that the dinnerware was fired at a lower temperature, coming out stronger and thinner than non-vitrified china. Vitrified dinnerware does not absorb water so there’s less risk of expanding and contracting, working to prevent accidental breakage and ensuring longevity of the product life.

Earthenware and Stoneware are two other types of porcelain dinnerware in the same family as china. Stoneware is durable and often trendier, featuring a stone exterior. Its unique, trendier presentation makes it ideal for restaurants serving Asian cuisine, bistros, farm to table, etc. It’s either semi or fully vitrified and safe for microwave or dishwasher use. Earthenware, on the other hand, is much less durable, a result of a quick and simple firing process. It is made of non-vitrified clay and less expensive than stoneware. It also offers excellent heat induction while adding a rustic feel to the ambiance. It is recommended to be handwashed only.

Tuxton Earthenware Soup Crock

Central Model #479-279

As we’ve discussed, some china is more durable than others. When shopping for your next china pattern, pay attention to whether or not the china can be used in the microwave or oven. A good determinant on the durability is whether it comes with a manufacturer warranty. Many top brands offer a one year no-chip warranty. International Tableware offers a Five-Year no-chip warranty exclusively at Central! A manufacturer warranty is typically a good determinant of durability, as it can be read that the manufacturer themselves have strong faith in their work.

Our top chinaware manufacturers include:

It’s important to note, however, that no piece of china is break-resistant. Most, but not all, chinaware is dishwasher safe. This is something you will want to verify in your research. Some china feature with glazed patterns that are not recommended for use in a dishwasher. Read on to learn more about dinnerware solutions that are virtually unbreakable.

Melamine Dinnerware

Melamine dinnerware rose in popularity in the 1940s for use during dinner parties. Melamine is a chemical that is used to make hard plastics and is therefore extremely durable and typically offered at a much lower price point than traditional chinaware. Some high-end melamine dinnerware even replicates the look and feel of chinaware, thus offering the best of both worlds. Given its notable durability, many melamine manufacturers will boast that their products are “virtually unbreakable!”

GET Urban Mill Melamine

G.E.T. Enterprises Trendy Urban Mill Pattern Melamine

Melamine is a great solution in many different types of commercial foodservice operations. Because it can withstand the rigors of day to day use, commercial melamine dinnerware is often seen in school cafeterias, hospitals, or other types of institutions with hectic, fast-paced rushes. Like china, melamine dinnerware also comes in quite the array of styles and patterns, with top brands working around the clock to define new trends.

Though melamine is difficult to break, instances of chipping have occurred if not properly cared for or maintained. However, melamine dinnerware won’t shatter if accidentally dropped, like most types of china. Most melamine will also be able to withstand high heat, many types up to 212°F. It’s an insulator, not a conductor, meaning it can maintain temperatures longer than other types of plastic dinnerware. It also stays cool to the touch when serving hot foods.

Generally speaking, melamine dinnerware is dishwasher safe and dries quickly, so users won’t wait long before they’re able to re-enter the dinnerware back into the food serving assembly. In addition to their durable “break-resistant” advertisements, melamine is also considered to be scratch and stain resistant.

Though dishwasher safe, melamine is not recommended for use in the microwave or oven, as opposed to some of their ceramic counterparts. Even though it’s capable of withstanding high heats, it should never be heated while in contact with food. Proper cleaning and care of melamine dinnerware ensures longevity. This video from our friends at G.E.T. Enterprises offers tried and true techniques for proper melamine maintenance.

Our top melamine dinnerware brands include:

It’s easy to talk in general terms, but like all types of dinnerware, not all melamine is the same. It’s best to fully research all the features of a specific style before committing. At Central, you can request a free sample of many of our dinnerware selections to see for yourself prior to purchasing.

But wait… is plastic safe?

A common concern with melamine and other plasticware are the chemicals used to create hard, durable plastic. These chemicals are extensively researched and tested to assure their fit and safe for dining. BPA is one of the most common chemicals used in plastic construction.

  • What is BPA?

A concern many have when it comes to melamine products is the amount of BPA they may contain. BPA, which is an acronym for Bisphenol A, is a chemical that manufacturers started using to construct certain plastics and resins starting in the 1950s. In the 1990s, consumers began questioning whether BPA was safe with many studies trying to link it to health problems. The FDA has since concluded that low levels are not harmful to humans. However, many products containing BPA, such as baby bottles, have been banned in the United States. Some melamine products on the market do still contain small traces of BPA in their construction, while others proudly exclaim they are 100% BPA free.

  • NSF Certification

If BPA is a concern for you, you can check to see if the piece of dinnerware is NSF certified. NSF is a stamp of approval given from NSF International, an independent public health and safety organization that develop standards for public health regulation. NSF approved dinnerware is always recommended over dinnerware that isn’t, and this isn’t something exclusive to dinnerware.

NSF Approved Logo

NSF Approved Logo

All sorts of commercial food service equipment and supplies are NSF listed. NSF International reviews construction material and the manufacturing process to confirm that all their standards are met. Therefore, opting for an NSF approved product gives peace of mind that the brand is complying with national regulations and safety standards. Many NSF listed items also feature added sanitary protections. The benefits of choosing products that have NSF International’s seal of approval reduce the risk of foodborne illness, are often easier to clean, and may help boost overall health inspection scores.

Other Plastic Dinnerware Constructions

Ceramic and melamine are arguably the two most popular types of commercial dinnerware constructions on the market. However, throughout your shopping adventures, you’re likely to see a few other types of plastic materials. Here’s a brief breakdown of what they mean.

Polycarbonate

Polycarbonate is a lightweight plastic material that, like melamine, is commonly considered to be shatter resistant. Unlike melamine, traditional polycarbonate dinnerware is also heat resistant and safe for microwave use. A lot of polycarbonate dinnerware can withstand temperatures between -40°F through 212°F. This makes the dinnerware ideal for use in both freezers and high temperature environments.

Cambro Polycarbonate Three-Compartment Plate

Central Model #250-564

BPA (see above) is a common chemical used to make polycarbonate plastics. BPA is one of the most extensively tested chemicals today, and, again, the FDA has concluded that small traces are not harmful for humans.

Polycarbonate dinnerware is typically inexpensive, which can be a big plus. However, though it’s thought to be break-resistant, some polycarbonate dinnerware may scratch and stain easily.

Our top polycarbonate dinnerware brands include Carlisle and Cambro.

Polypropylene and Polyethylene

Both polypropylene and polyethylene are similar, and many pieces of dinnerware are made using a blend of the two. Though a more affordable alternative to other types of dinnerware, by and large, dinnerware constructed out of polypropylene and polyethylene plastics are considered to have moderate scratch and break-resistance, not holding up quite to the same standards of melamine. They are, however, highly stain resistant and safe for both dishwasher and microwave use. They have a fairly decent drying time but may require additional wiping. It can typically withstand temperatures between 32°F through 180°F.

An additional blended hybrid of polypropylene is co-polymer. This material is often observed in the construction of cafeteria trays, and has a high resistance to breakage, scratching or staining. It’s also microwave and dishwasher safe, and considered to have a faster drying time than traditional polypropylene plasticware. It can handle temperatures between 40°F and 210°F, not ideal for use in freezers.

Acrylic

Acrylic is a hard plastic that is manufactured to replicate the look and feel of glass and high-end crystal. Acrylic is a common construction material of servingware, enhancing the presentation of buffet areas while extremely durable. Throughout your search, you’re likely to come across serving bowls, utensils, display stands, and bakery cases made of acrylic. Acrylic products are traditionally more affordable than their glass counterparts, with added shatter-proof durability.

Rosseto Acrylic Display Case

Central Model #989-019

ABS and SAN Plastic

ABS is the same type of plastic material used to make the popular LEGO® building blocks! It stands for Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene, a thermoplastic (a resin that becomes a plastic on heating and hardening) resin that’s largely considered to be middle of the road. Plastic dinnerware made with this type of material is typically considered to be medium strength with a good resistance to impact, breaking, and chemicals. It absorbs shock, resistant to high heat and scratches, and affordable. It can withstand temperatures between 0°F to 180°F.

Some limitations of ABS plastic include poor weatherability and not resistant to solvents that may weaken and corrode ABS plasticware over time. It also generates a lot of smoke if burned. Because of this, dinnerware made of ABS is not recommended for use in the microwave. It is, however, dishwasher safe with an average dry time. Due to the lack of solvent-resistance, it is recommended that you wipe down your ABS-constructed ware soon after the cleaning cycle finishes.

ABS is not considered to be the most environmentally-friendly plastic material on the market. It is not biodegradable or a renewable resource.

SAN plastic, also known as styrene acrylonitrile resin, is another co-polymer plastic blend and shares a lot in common with ABS in terms of its chemical structure. SAN is often used by manufacturers to create durable plasticware that mimics the look and feel of ceramic china.

Additional Dinnerware Material

In commercial dining facilities, china and plastic dinnerware are certainly the two most common. However, dinnerware made of metal and glass are occasionally used to create unique, one of a kind environments.

Metal Dinnerware

Metal dinnerware is sleek and affordable, but should only ever be used for serving, and never for cooking or reheating. Common types of metal dinnerware include stainless steel and copper, which offer a trendier presentation for appetizers, entrees and side dishes. Check out American Metalcraft’s selection of dinnerware for trendy, affordable serving inspiration.

Bon Chef Metal Soup Bowl

Central Model #16Y-037

Glass Dinnerware

Glass is ideal for upscale dining establishments. Quality glass dinnerware runs at a higher price point than their plastic counterparts that have been strategically designed to mimic the look and feel of glass (see acrylic section above). However, authentic glass adds a touch of class to every dining room.

Libbey Gibraltar Clear Glass Dinnerware

Central Model #186-087

In addition to higher upfront costs, there is also a higher risk of breakage. Glassware will need replaced down the road, so your glass dinnerware purchase more than likely won’t be a one and done experience.

The three most common types of glass dinnerware include Annealed, Fully Tempered, and Rim Tempered.

  1. Annealed glass is your standard glassware and the most cost effective (up front). It’s slowly cooled to reduce internal stress, making it capable of withstanding temperature changes. However, when it breaks, it shatters into a hundred shards, creating a cleaning nightmare and safety concerns.
  2. Fully-Tempered glass has been more processed than annealed glass, increasing its strength and making it less prone to breakage. When it does break, it breaks in chunks instead of shattering into dangerously miniscule and sharp shards.
  3. Rim-Tempered glass runs middle of the road. A part of the piece has been tempered for added protection, but not the entirety of the product. This is usually the rim, because it’s the most likely to tip over and take the blunt force of the impact. This is a nice option if you’re on a budget but want to ensure some sort of durability.

Libbey is one of our top glassware manufacturers, boasting a comprehensive selection of glass drinkware and dining solutions.

All in all, your final decision should be made around which piece of dinnerware can enhance the experience you wish to give your guests, based on your established environment, ambiance, and menu. Central offers a complete selection of all different types of dinner and servingware to help you find the right piece you’re looking for. If you have any additional questions about which material will work the best given your unique needs, give us a call us at 800.215.9293.

Commercial Hood Systems - Central Restaurant Products

Restaurant Hood System: Why it Matters and Everything Your Kitchen Needs

The Importance of a Restaurant Hood System

restaurant hood system is an essential piece of equipment for a safe commercial kitchen. These ventilation systems are the first line of defense to preventing fires in the kitchen. Restaurant Hood Systems are designed to remove heat, smoke and grease laden vapors that are generated while cooking to keep your commercial kitchen running safely and efficiently. With proper airflow established, these systems also reduce odors, improve air quality, and lower energy consumption in your commercial kitchen. In addition to all of these crucial benefits, kitchen ventilation systems are required by fire and health inspectors as well as insurance providers.

Components of a Hood System

Vent Hood

Placed over cooking equipment. Designed to remove excess steam, water vapor, heat, grease, smoke, odor and flue gas from the kitchen environment. Available in two types – type I or type II

Hoods require hood filters. Filters are available in stainless steel, galvanized, or aluminum; Welded or riveted in construction.

Baffle Filter

Series of vertical baffles that live within the hood. The filter captures grease and drains it away into a container. Designed for easy removal for cleaning.

Exhaust Fan

Gets the air moving within the system – taking the “poor” air out of the kitchen. Installed on the outside of the building.

  • Belt Drive Fans
    • Driven by belt and motor pulley
    • Friction caused by belt can decrease efficiencies and cause more repairs
  • Direct Drive Fans
    • Blade fan wheel directly attached to axle
    • More efficient system with less moving parts and maintenance

Make-Up Air Unit

Brings in clean air to circulate through the kitchen to “make up” for the grease laden air being suction out by the fan. Installed on the outside of the building.

Variety of Hoods

Hood systems are made in a variety of types, styles, sizes, and shapes to best fit restaurant kitchens around the world. There are two primary types of hoods, as well as 6 styles.

TYPES

Type I          
  • Used for the collection and removal of grease and smoke
  • Always include listed grease filters or baffles for removal of grease
  • Required over restaurant equipment that produces smoke or grease-laden vapors. This includes: fryers, ranges, griddles, broilers, ovens, tilt skillets, etc.
Type II           
  • Considered general hoods for the collection and removal of steam, vapor, head and odors, where grease is NOT present
  • May or may not have grease filters or baffles
  • Typically used over dishwashers, steam tables, and the like
  • Can sometimes be used over ovens, steamers, or kettles if determined that they do not produce smoke or grease laden vapors

STYLES

Wall-Mounted Canopy Mounted flush with a wall and used for all types of cooking equipment located against a wall
Single Island Canopy Ceiling mounted over a single line cooking island and used for all types of cooking equipment
Double Island Canopy Ceiling mounted over a back to back cooking island and used for all types of cooking equipment
Backshelf Hood Used for counter height equipment. Normally located against a wall, but are also used as freestanding units
Eyebrow Hood Used for direct mounting to ovens, as well as some dishwashers
Pass-Over Style Hood Used over counter-height equipment when a plate pass-over configuration is required

When Are Hood Systems Required?

Hood systems are required in commercial kitchens where heating elements are used. Over stoves, fryers, grills, tilt skillets, etc. The size and type of system required depends on the type of equipment being used and the number of cooking units. Note that manufacturers now offer some ventless hood options where the units are self-contained with powerful fans. These units open up opportunities for kitchen design and use of the unit.

The size and style of restaurant hood system needed for a kitchen varies greatly depending on the equipment used and local codes. It is best to work through your specific kitchen layout with an industry expert for assistance purchasing the correct system. Our team of knowledge and friendly product consultants is always ready to help at 800.215.9293

What Hood Filter Does My Kitchen Need?

Two things to consider when selecting the right hood filter for your commercial kitchen are the volume of product being cooked and the visibility of the kitchen to customers. A high volume kitchen requires a heavy-duty filter to withstand the abuse it will be receiving, so a stainless steel or galvanized filter would best. Additionally, if the kitchen is visible to customers, a shiny filter such as stainless steel would be most attractive. Of these two considerations, the durability of the filter should be the primary concern.

Material:

  • Stainless Steel
    • Most durable and easiest to clean
    • Best for high-volume operations
    • Attractive, shiny finish
    • Most expensive material option
  • Galvanized
    • Strong and long lasting
    • High performance at an affordable price
    • Stands up to degreasers and cleaning chemicals
    • Metal may become discolored after using cleaning chemicals
  • Aluminum
    • Light weight and affordable
    • Prone to corrosion and damage
    • Attractive, shiny finish
    • Cannot use harsh degreasers and cleaning chemicals

Construction:

  • Welded
    • Baffles are made from the same single piece of metal as the frame
    • Back and front are welded together
    • Rigid and durable design – won’t easily bend
    • Heavy duty and long lasting
  • Riveted
    • Made of multiple pieces held together by rivets
    • Series of individual baffles inside filter
    • Somewhat flexible allowing rivets to loosen over time
    • Less expensive, but less durable option

When Should Hood Filters Be Replaced?

There is no standard time frame of when hood filters should be replaced. While the filter could last a couple of years in some kitchens, it could last only 6 to 8 months in another. Factors to consider:

  • Type of filter
  • Type of operation
  • Level of maintenance

It is important to inspect hood filters on a regular basis for wear or damage. When a filter is damaged, it cannot effectively do its job and becomes a fire hazard. If a filter is worn, clogged, damaged, or has excessive grease build up, it should be replaced right away.

When purchasing a new hood filter, it is important to know that the actual size of the filter is about half an inch less than the size listed.There is no standard sizing for hood filters. Keep baffles vertical to measure your filter and know that the vertical dimension is followed by the horizontal dimension.

Example:

  • Actual size: 9-5/8″ x 15-3/4″ x 1-3/4″
  • Filter size: 10″x16″

Hood Filter Cleaning

Regular upkeep of your hood filter keeps your kitchen safe. If the filters are ignored, grease can build up and cause a number of problems including poor air quality, excess heat, increased utility costs, and fire hazard. A regular cleaning schedule will prolong the life of your filter and overall system, but keeping a safe and clean kitchen.

  • Dishwasher
    • Run commercial dishwasher on highest temperature
    • Avoid harsh cleaners
    • Inspect that all reside was removed before drying
  • Soak Tank
    • Investment that saves time and labor
    • Fill soak tank with water and add safe cleaner
    • Soak filter overnight and rinse in the morning before reinstalling
  • Hand Wash
    • Use hot, soapy water and non-abrasive sponge
    • Avoid using harsh chemicals
    • Dry immediately after washing

Time to Shop!

Have more questions? Or ready to design your restaurant hood system? Call us at 800.215.9293 for one on one assistance! You can also browse online at our full line of hood systems and components!

Frymaster Fryers

Frymaster: Top Choice for Fryers in the Foodservice Industry

In 1935, the company’s founder P.F. Ratcliff built the very first Frymaster fryer with focus on the open frypot and the master jet burner. Frymaster has remained the industry leader in product innovation, efficiency, reliabilities and durability since this first fryer, always keeping quality and the customer’s needs at the center of their operations.

Precision is the essence of Frymaster quality. Manufacturing a superior design produces the level of performance, reliability, and durability operators have come to expect from Frymaster. See the difference in Frymaster fryers for yourself!

Frymaster

Fryers

Frymaster’s complete fryer portfolio offers a solution for every commercial kitchen! Choose from open and tube type, gas and electric, value, performance, high-efficiency and oil-conserving models. Frymaster fryers are high performing, low maintenance, and easy to operate.

Top Models:

Frymaster Fryers

Filters

The quality of the oil used in your fryer will directly affect the quality of the food produced, as well as the longevity of your equipment. Keeping the oil clean is done with a filtration system. Frymaster offers both built-in and portable filtration that make this process quick, easy, and convenient.

Top Models:

Frymaster Fryer Filter

Accessories

With everything from casters and fryer filter paper to extra fry baskets and skimmers, Central has all of the accessories that your Frymaster fryers and filters could need.

Frymaster Accessories

Energy Star

Energy Star products are given their designation due to designs that cut your energy usage, contributing to a cleaner environment. These Energy Star products lower your utility bills due to the lowered energy usage and in some states, qualify for large rebates, making these products even better investments! Frymaster boasts 9 consecutive years keeping you connected in the most  energy efficient way possible offering several Energy Star rated fryers to bring efficiencies to your commercial kitchen. Learn more about Energy Star Rated Fryers from Central Restaurant Products.

Energy Star Rebates Map

Ready to Shop?

Central Restaurant Products offers hundreds of fryers, filters and accessories from Frymaster. Browse online or speak to one of our expert product consultants at 800.215.9293 for assistance finding the perfect equipment for your kitchen!

Blodgett Ovens

Blodgett – Reliable Commercial Ovens

Blodgett Ovens began in 1848 when Gardner S. Blodgett build his first oven for a Vermont tavern owner. Today, Blodgett is the leading manufacturer of commercial ovens in the world. Restaurants, fast-food chains, hotels, hospitals, institutions, small businesses and large corporations alike rely on the Blodgett name to do the job right. Durable, efficient and reliable, Blodgett offers every kind of oven your commercial kitchen needs in order to be successful.

Convection OvensBlodgett Convection Ovens

Convection ovens are one of the most popular pieces of commercial cooking equipment. Known for their speed and efficiency, Convection Ovens use fans to circulate heated air through the cooking cavity to help foods cook as much as 35% faster than conventional ovens.

Blodgett believes in offering operators real and lasting value by building products with exceptional materials and craftsmanship. That’s why Blodgett convection ovens are the industry benchmark for quality and reliability, providing decades of rigorous use in any commercial kitchen. Blodgett offers hundreds of convection ovens in a variety of sizes and styles, ensuring operators the perfect oven for every unique commercial kitchen!

Blodgett Convection Ovens

Combi Ovens

Blodgett Combi Ovens

Combi ovens get their name because they offer three ways to cook from one unit: pressureless steam, convection heat, and a combination of the two. This unique ability makes it possible to steam, poach, roast, blanch, bake, rethermalize or reheat, prepare sous vide products, and in some models, proof. The ability to perform each of these functions make it possible for commercial kitchens to consolidate both a convection oven and a steamer into a combi oven, helping to justify the seemingly high cost of the equipment.

All Blodgett Combi ovens are manufactured to the same tough standards as the most respected convection ovens in the world. Fit, finish and features are painstakingly considered before the Blodgett nameplate can be applied. Blodgett’s goal is to bring operators all of the features they need without the bells and whistles they don’t. Whichever Blodgett Combi you select, you are guaranteed a quality oven that will improve product quality and increase yield while decreasing your labor and cleaning costs.

Pizza Ovens

Blodgett Pizza Ovens

The Blodgett Deck Oven line has set industry wide standards for excellence in baking
characteristics, performance and reliability. Simplicity of design and quality construction
throughout assure years of trouble-free operation. Blodgett provides the strongest warranty
in the business with a standard five-year door warranty!

Blodgett Pizza Ovens

Energy Star

Energy Star products are given their designation due to designs that cut your energy usage, contributing to a cleaner environment. These Energy Star products lower your utility bills due to the lowered energy usage and in some states, qualify for large rebates, making these products even better investments! Blodgett offers several Energy Star rated ovens to bring efficiencies to your commercial kitchen. Learn more about Energy Star Rated Convection Ovens from Central Restaurant Products.

Ready to shop?

Central Restaurant Products offers thousands of Blodgett ovens, steamers and more. Browse online or speak to one of our expert product consultants at 800.215.9293 for assistance finding the perfect equipment for your kitchen!

Pitco Frialator

Pitco: The Fryer Experts

Pitco Frialator had their beginnings in 1918 with the goal of creating simple and reliable kitchen equipment for professional frying. As the company celebrates 100 years of service this year, their goal remains the same and Pitco continues to design and produce equipment that makes it easy for food service operators to offer the best in fried foods!

The Pitco Difference

Pitco was voted Best in Class by Dealers, Operators, and Overall for their Freestanding Floor Fryers in 2017. And for good reason! Pitco fryers are available in a wide variety of sizes with premium features such as fully automated filtration, SmartOil Sense, and InfinityTouch. Long lasting, high temperature alloy stainless steel heat baffles are mounted in the heat exchanger tubes to provide maximum heating and combustion efficiency to help your fryer last. Backed by parts and labor warranties, Pitco stands behind the quality of their products!

Pitco Best in Class

Product Offerings & Top Selling Models

  • Fryer Accessories & Parts
    • From fryer baskets and fryer filter powder to casters and fryer brushes, there is a plethora of accessories and parts that you may need at some point when owning your commercial fryer.

Energy Star

What is Energy Star? It is the trusted, government-backed symbol for energy efficiency designed to help save consumers money while also protecting the environment through products that utilize less resources. In the food service industry, these more efficient products lower utility bills and in many areas, even qualify you for sizable rebates. Learn more about Energy Star, read our recent blog post here.

The Pitco VF35 is the first ever value priced fryer that is energy star rated. The 35 lb. fryer features a stainless steel tank, front, door, sides and back splash for long term durability as well as a lower flue temperature to generate more production per BTU. The gas control valve prevents gas flow to the burner until the pilot is established and the temperature limit switch safely shuts off all gas flow when the fryer temperature exceeds the upper limit. This value fryer boasts 70,000 BTU while using 35% less gas and giving the same production level as a 35C+S! Easily cook 55-60 lbs. of french fries per hour with this power horse while using less energy!

Rebate: depending where you live, qualify for rebates between $75 to $1900!

Ready to shop?

Central Restaurant Products offers Pitco’s entire line of available products online! Browse online and give us a call at 800.215.9293 to speak with one of our friendly product consultants for one on one assistance.

 

Kolpak Walk-Ins – Providing Convenience and Flexibility

Kolpak, a division of Welbilt, puts a lot of thought behind their walk-in refrigeration. Plus, in the process, they exceeded many federal standards. This hard work resulted in a robust environmentally friendly construction, rigorous testing before shipping, low operational costs and assured food safety.

Welbilt manufactures Kolpak in house, which sets them apart from their competitors. For foodservice and restaurant operators, this means all Kolpak items come complete with a number of pre-assembled components and accessories.

In addition, Welbilt also performs a quality check on Kolpak walk-ins, inspecting for any leaks, and starts them up to ensure the product is ready to go and will operate properly.

Panels and Doors

Kolpak walk-ins have 4″ panels which exceed all federal insulation requirements. Each walk-in is 100 percent foamed into place with a non-CFC urethane foam. Coved corners on the floor panels allow for easier cleaning and greater sanitation. Cam locks ensure that your panels will lock to a rigid air-tight seal.

The door and door jambs are constructed of fiberglass reinforced plastic (FRP) for structural integrity and provides a thermal break. The other great thing about using FRP is it doesn’t create condensation the way a metal door would. Doors close automatically at a 120° angle and satisfy energy regulations. This also helps alleviate worry about leaving the door open accidentally. Adjustable hinges ensure your door is properly sealed, keeping air inside the unit, and keeping outside air out.

Floors

Kolpak’s patented Era bracketed technology is approved for up to 1,000 lbs. per square ft. uniform load. This new floor design is built to last and eliminates floor delamination, which helps you avoid down-time on your walk-in. This is because the Era bracket eliminates the need for a plywood underlay on foot traffic floors, while enhancing its ability to handle light rolling cart traffic. This improved design continues to meet NSF and DOE requirements, as well. If you need a structural floor for heavy duty storage, Kolpak can help. The Era bracket on structural floors with the addition of 3/16″ overlay provides superior strength

Polar-Pak Offers Easy Installation, Quick Shipping

Have limited space or budget? Kolpak has your solution with their Polar-Pak walk-ins. These self-contained refrigeration units can be used in any configuration without the need for numbered panels. Top mount and side mount models are available.

Polar-Pak is the industry’s simplest installation. There’s no need for a refrigeration technician or a plumber (saving you money!) and offers superior air circulation around the coils, making it both economical and efficient to run. In the past, we’ve had two of our Product Consultants, neither of whom had ever put together a Kolpak walk-in before, quickly put together a Polar-Pak during a Kolpak visit to our office.

When you need it fast, some 7’6″ high Polar-Pak units Polar-Paks qualify for Kolpak’s Quick Ship Program. These units will ship within 48 hours after your order has been received!

 

KoldFront – When You Require a Walk-In with Greater Flexibility

Made from the same quality panels and components Kolpak is known for, the remote refrigerated KoldFront unit features Rapid-Ship components that are ready to assemble. 7’6″ or 8’6″ panel heights and single or two compartment options are available. This facilitates faster ship times and a potentially cost-effective solution depending on your requirements.

All KoldFront models are Rapid Ship, which means they ship within five days after your order has been received. Long lasting LED door section light with safety night light ensures safety and energy efficiency. Doors feature a standard kick plate for greater durability.

Shop Kolpak at Central

When you shop for Kolpak walk-ins at Central, you receive free shipping on all Kolpak units! Our Product Consultants are standing by to help you get the most out of your space by fitting you with the correct walk-in for your business. Shop today!

 

Garland Ranges

Garland Electric Ranges – Unmatched Performance & Durability

Garland, a division of the Welbilt brand, has been manufacturing top quality ranges since 1864 where their operations began in a small Foundry in Detroit. Over the last 150+ years, Garland has engineered ranges inspired by chefs to unleash your unlimited culinary creativity through unmatched performance and durability. The company has listened to the needs of chefs and created ranges so intuitive and adaptive, it helps you take food further!

Garland Electric Ranges

Advantages of Electric Ranges

Depending on the application, electric ranges can be the perfect solution for your commercial kitchen. The biggest advantage? Many see an added layer of safety in electric ranges due to the fact that a standing pilot light is not required at all times. For many churches and schools who only use their range a few days a week, the electric range poses simplicity and safety as a key advantage.

Speaking of safety, Garland electric ranges feature over heat protection where elements that are turned on for more than 8 minutes without a pot or pan on it, automatically has its power reduced! No more accidental burns to your staff!

An additional advantage is the simplicity of upkeep. No need to remove and clean grates after each use! Garland’s high-performance elements on their electric ranges are sealed to provide greater heat  and easier clean up! No more sauces or crumbs falling in small cracks that are impossible to clean.

The Garland Advantage

Garland Electric Ranges are designed to simplify operations in your commercial kitchen while performing at the highest level. With a 10″ high standard backguard, sealed elements to provide greater heat and easier cleaning, a durable stainless steel exterior, and so much more, Garland Electric Ranges are an easy choice.

Versatility

Garland Ranges offers hundreds of ranges in various sizes and styles, but if those do not fit your needs, Garland allows your kitchen to build for your future and your specific needs. Add broilers, griddles, casters, change sizes, and so much more while always providing performance that the competition can’t match.

Shop with Central!

Ready to shop? Shop with Central and save on top quality ranges from Garland! Have questions? Call 800-215-9293 to speak with one of our helpful protect consultants!

Buying Guide: Food Pans and Layouts

Food pans are essential to the foodservice industry. They start in the food prep area then make their way to display in a steam table, hence their other name: Steam table pans. Each food pan manufacturer has different construction types and benefits to best fit your foodservice establishment.

Pan Sizes

There are a variety of food pan sizes to best fit your current table’s configuration which all depends on the types of food you are serving. In some instances, it is beneficial to use a full size pan, while in others, you may want to break things up and use multiple food pans in the same well. With Central’s selection, options are endless.

Below is a diagram to show the different food pan size offerings from Central:

Food Pan Sizes

When dividing up a steam table, you will need to use adapter bars. Adapter bars enhance the steam tables presentation but more importantly, eliminate gaps that may cause steam loss. They also reduce energy consumption.

Below is a diagram to show the different ways adapter bars can be used with multiple sizes of food pans in the same well:

Food Pan Sizes

Adapter Bar Key

Adapter Bar Color Key

  • Blue: 20″L — Model# 101-002
  • Red: 12″L — Model# 101-001
  • Green: T-Shaped — Model# 913-V17

Features

From stainless steel gauges to reinforced corners, there are many factors to consider when shopping for a food pan.

Steel Gauges

Stainless Steel Gauges

When choosing a gauge size, keep one thing in mind: The lower the gauge number is, the thicker the steel will be. So, for instance, a 22 gauge food pan will be thicker than a 24 gauge. Foodservice operations that depend heavily on using food pans may want to consider a lower gauge for durability.

Pan Corner

Corners

If you have had to get a food pan out of a steam table before, you know at times it is not the easiest task. Many food pans now are “anti-jamming” or have a tapered or angled ramp on the corner for easy lifting. Others include coved corners for easy serving or pouring.

Pan Edge

Edges

Food pans with a flat edge will keep the pan tight in the well and promote easier handling with a larger gripping area.

Decorative Pans

Decorative Pans

Food pans are not just limited to rectangles and squares. Today, manufacturers have different shapes, such as Vollrath’s Super Pan® Super Shapes that are designed to fit in existing food pan wells but liven up the presentation with unique designs or shapes. These decorative food pans also have their own adapter bars.

Accessories

There are many accessories you can add to your food pan purchase to make things easier or more efficient for staff that include:

Disposable Pan Liner
  • Wire grates: Ideal for draining, cooling and more
  • False Bottoms: Hold food above the pan bottom for draining
  • Disposable Pan Liners: Perfect for easy clean-up and can be used in both hot and cold settings
  • Disposable Pan Covers: Plastic that fits over a pan and shrinks once put in an oven for a tight-fit
  • Lids: Available in a variety of options from hinged and flexible to one that can be used with different food pan sizes

Ready to shop? Browse our wide variety of shapes and sizes on our website or call one of helpful product consultants for one on one assistant at 800.215.9293!