Bettering Your Hotel F&B Operation's Back-of-House
Last fall, I had a chance to spend a few days at the historic Amway Grand Plaza Hotel in Grand Rapids, Michigan, where I met the F&B team and toured the front and back of the house, which includes eight bustling outlets, and sizable meeting and event space.
While walking through the basement-level bakeshop kitchen, I was shown a large Middleby Marshall “Ferris wheel” oven installed in the 1920s, which could almost double as an actual wall. It had heavy metal doors that opened and closed horizontally like a mouth, while inside were its “teeth” made up of five long rotating shelves, which are still used today for baking batches of pies, breads, and other tasty treats.
Very few operations have a reliable 90-plus-year-old workhorse like that in their kitchen, which is why many of you are on the lookout in 2019 to address equipment, storage, and supply needs with fresh budgets. We’re here to help with a back-of-house-themed issue, starting with a preview of February’s biennial NAFEM Show in Orlando which is one of the premier foodservice equipment events in the industry.
If you’re attending NAFEM with money to spend, turn to page 8 for timely tips on maximizing your dollars from longtime Hotel F&B Advisory Board member Geoffrey Sagrans of The Breakers Palm Beach. Is your forgotten F&B storeroom in need of an overhaul? We asked three purchasing pros for ways to save money and create efficiencies in this often neglected back-of-house space; their advice can be found here.
You can learn more about Amway Grand’s enormous bakeshop kitchen and what tools they rely on to balance high volume with high quality (while exceeding high expectations from their discerning guests).
That old Middleby Marshall oven could have been retired years ago given its age, but if there’s one thing chefs like even more than the latest kitchen toys, it’s reliable pieces of equipment that get the job done daily. Here’s hoping you solve your back-of-house needs with smart, long-lasting purchases that benefit your operation far beyond 2019.