Must Haves in the Kitchen: A Few Items All Beginning Restaurant Owners Need

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Opening your first restaurant can be an exciting experience. But this can also turn into a real-life nightmare if you go into your endeavor ill-prepared.

When opening a restaurant for the first time, most restaurateurs know that there will be issues that need to be addressed. But this is most often related to your front-of-house (FOH) and back-of-house (BOH) staff.

The one area where you don’t want to have any issues at all is going to be in your kitchen. Because if you fail in the kitchen, you’re going to fail as a business.

The best way to ensure your success is to ensure that you have all the right tools and ingredients in your kitchen, along with competent, dependable, and experienced staff that can execute your recipes without issue.

If you’re about to open your first restaurant, the following will illustrate a few must-haves that you’ll need on opening day. 

Dessert Supplies

Even if you don’t specialize in desserts, you’re going to want to ensure that you’ll be well-stocked on your dessert supplies.

Believe it or not, one of the biggest complaints in restaurants across the country comes about when an establishment doesn’t have a dessert in stock. And this is often because the supply runs out faster than you normally anticipate, or you lack the tools to produce the desserts on a consistent basis.

For example, quality cream chargers are necessary for producing whipped toppings that go on most dessert dishes. And if you run out of these, you’re going to be in trouble when a large group of guests all order one of your signature desserts which require whipped topping.

To avoid bad reviews, always ensure that your desserts and dessert supplies are up to par.

Cutlery and Flatware

Another huge problem in restaurants across the country is that some restaurants are notorious for not consistently keeping a proper stock of cutlery and flatware.

Imagine for a moment that you’re a customer and you go out to your favorite restaurant and sit in your favorite booth on Mother’s Day and you finally get your food, but there’s no cutlery or flatware anywhere in sight.

The above scenario makes for a huge problem, not only for you but for the poor waiter who has to go hunt down dirty flatware and wash it just for one table to eat.

Keeping a proper inventory can help you to avoid situations like this. And the last thing you’ll want to have is a bad review that reads, “Be prepared to eat with your hands.”

Adequate Refrigerator Space

Another big problem with restaurants across the country is the inadequate refrigeration space common in most kitchens. And you may be surprised what some of these establishments end up doing to compensate.

According to health code, a restaurant kitchen has safety compliance to meet. And this includes keeping meats separate from vegetables, and a host of other regulations. However, some kitchens are horrible about keeping up with health safety this is largely due to not having enough refrigeration space.

In fact, it’s not uncommon for an employee to have to contort and climb around stacks of full storage containers just to retrieve a few items from a kitchen refrigerator.

When planning your kitchen layout, ensure that you leave enough room for plenty of walk-in coolers, deep-freeze coolers, and separate refrigerations units. This will serve to increase your storage capacity and keep your employees from having to play Tetris with items in the coolers.

Planning to open a restaurant is a huge undertaking. And many restaurants fail within the first couple of years due to a lack of foresight before initially opening.

To avoid having an embarrassing opening, make sure that you’ve double-checked all of your supplies and your inventory. Because the last thing you’ll want is to run out of food in the middle of a busy Friday night.