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Advice needed on a few pieces of equipment for outfitting a small new restaurant.

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 

We're buying a small breakfast and lunch spot that has a tiny kitchen, but we need to improve some of the current methodology. They currently process everything by hand, and that has to end. So, I need to pick up a food processor, especially for slicing and julienne. I wish I could afford a Hobart, but it's simply not in the budget. I see Robot Coupe for under $1,000 and they're not too huge, and there's a brand I've never heard of, Uniworld, that sort of mimics the design of the Hobart, for under $700. (http://www.aarestaurantsupply.com/store/pc/Uniworld-Pro-Food-Processor-with-3-Blade-Discs-p704.htm#.UwAWT4V_l0k) Anyone familiar?

 

I also think an immersion blender will really streamline things for sauces and soups. Any decent cordless units out there? The problem with corded units is there will be 3 of us in the line and a cord is too cumbersome. All I can find is a Waring and a "professional" Kitchen Aid, both around $300. Can you get the power with a cordless? Will they hold up? Anyone have experience with one?

 

The last request is a rec for an espresso machine that uses prepacked pods. We sell tons of coffee and we could kill it with half way decent espresso, but the staff is incapable of becoming baristas and will never be proficient with pulling a consistently great cup from a standard machine. I'd like to keep the expense under $1000 if possible. Any recs out there for a reliably consistent machine? Or even the coffee pods as well?

 

Thanks in advance for any help you folks might give.

post #2 of 10
Thread Starter 

No one's got an opinion or advice? I'm surprised at the numbers of views with no comment. Is there a better place for this query?

post #3 of 10

My limited experience with the robot coupe was bad--the plastic housing is brittle---and the thing was cracked in no time---making cleaning impossible.

 

No idea about a coffee machine,sorry---

post #4 of 10

personally buying cheap products doesnt save you money in the long run i like robot coupe weve had one that lasted for more than ten years although if you have the hobart mixer why not buy the attachments for it there cheaper and you save on space i wonder why your using a immersion blender online and why three cooks need to use it that would be just for saucier why is everyone making sauces online it sounds to me you take cooking to order to the extreme as for the esspresso machine i have no knowledge of them so cannot comment oh im not trying to be mean or anything just sounds to me like people are bouncing around on the line im probably wrong though just reads like that

post #5 of 10

Not familiar with uniworld, so no advice there. Robot coupe are beasts but as mentioned, plastic on them will crack and metal ones I would imagine are more expensive. Do you have a commercial mixer that you could buy vegie prep attachments for?

 

Never used a cordless immersion, so can't help you there.

 

Pretty much any semi-automatic espresso machine will allow you use espresso pods from illy http://www.illy.com/wps/wcm/connect/en/coffee-at-home/ese-coffee-pods. Good product if going for idiot proof system.

 

Haven't bought an espresso machine in 20 years so my knowledge is dated to say the least.

Wisdom comes with age, but sometimes age comes alone.
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Wisdom comes with age, but sometimes age comes alone.
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post #6 of 10

A little confused here, you say its a small space yet u need a cordless to service 3 people working with it?

First, a high quality cordless NSF stick blender (I don't even know of one) is bound to be 3 times the cost

of a plug in type.

Also, if the appliance indeed needs to be "shared", like passed to the guy at the work table on your left,

the best solution is to install drop down semi retractable extension cords from the ceiling to plug into.

Ive built 3 kitchens with this feature--very common.

Are you checking into used equipment? Do you have a restaurant equipment auction house near you?

Good place to pick up things like hobarts etc--they may be old but theyre built like sherman tanks.

post #7 of 10

Here is a pretty handy guide about all the different Waring Immersion Blenders. Really detailed: http://www.katom.com/cat/waring-immersion-blenders/make-the-smart-choice-with-the-waring-immersion-blender-buying-guide.html Hope it's helpful! 

post #8 of 10

I don't want to be the thread smart arse, but do you really need a food processor for chopping and juliennes? In this small kitchen here I will happily use knife and mandoline for such tasks, as I find it almost as quick as a food processor and it doesn't take up any room whatsoever.

 

I can't recommend any immersion blender brands, because I'm in Europe. Mine has a cord, it cost me around 70 bucks (no-name from a reputable kitchen equipment dealer), it will last for a couple of years, and if I needed three, I would buy three, but obviously, Meezenplaz's suggestion is even better.

 

As far as serving great coffee is concerned, I don't think it can be done without a proper espresso machine. I've had to train all my staff to work the old Carimali and pull a nice cup of coffee, and they could all do it within a day or so; they don't have to be baristas. We're known for serving the best coffee in town. We just don't do clover leaves or Xmas trees...;)

post #9 of 10
Thread Starter 

Thanks for the replies thus far. We don't have a Hobart mixer or else I would just get attachments. Just no room for a standing mixer. I was referring to the Hobart food processor which is miles above the cost of the Uniworld. And yes, we can do it all by hand, just trying to improve efficiencies from an already overtaxed kitchen. The cordless immersion is probably a frivolous endeavor. Meezenplaz' rec is brilliant, however. I'll use that no matter which way we go. As to the espresso machine, got to do pods. I know it won't duplicate the results of the real deal, but we need the easy of a semi-auto machine.

post #10 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by CapeCodChef View Post
 

We're buying a small breakfast and lunch spot that has a tiny kitchen, but we need to improve some of the current methodology. They currently process everything by hand, and that has to end. So, I need to pick up a food processor, especially for slicing and julienne. I wish I could afford a Hobart, but it's simply not in the budget. I see Robot Coupe for under $1,000 and they're not too huge, and there's a brand I've never heard of, Uniworld, that sort of mimics the design of the Hobart, for under $700. (http://www.aarestaurantsupply.com/store/pc/Uniworld-Pro-Food-Processor-with-3-Blade-Discs-p704.htm#.UwAWT4V_l0k) Anyone familiar?

 

I also think an immersion blender will really streamline things for sauces and soups. Any decent cordless units out there? The problem with corded units is there will be 3 of us in the line and a cord is too cumbersome. All I can find is a Waring and a "professional" Kitchen Aid, both around $300. Can you get the power with a cordless? Will they hold up? Anyone have experience with one?

 

The last request is a rec for an espresso machine that uses prepacked pods. We sell tons of coffee and we could kill it with half way decent espresso, but the staff is incapable of becoming baristas and will never be proficient with pulling a consistently great cup from a standard machine. I'd like to keep the expense under $1000 if possible. Any recs out there for a reliably consistent machine? Or even the coffee pods as well?

 

Thanks in advance for any help you folks might give.

 

Food/Processor: I like robotcoupes, they're in almost every kitchen because they are built like steel and last 20+ years. The plastic tops usually break after a while but are easily replaced, the metal ones last forever but cost around $300 if I remember correctly. Anything bigger would be a waste in a "tiny breakfast/lunch spot". I'm not trying to be a smart-ass here but I think if you're worrying about cutting things by hand you need to improve your knife skills tremendously. How much knife work is really being done is such a small place? I really recommend brushing up on knife skills before deciding to throw everything in the robotcoupe. You'll be surprised to see that most people can get things done faster (and easier) by hand.

 

Immersion blender: I have never heard of a cordless model before. If I remember correctly I've used dynamic brand and they hold up forever. Depending on how much soup you're making you may not need a large immersion blender, sometimes a hand model will do. Analyze how much soup you are actually pureeing at one time before deciding.

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