Selecting the right size of refrigerated prep table or prep cooler can be a daunting task, especially for a new restaurant owner. By this point you should have a rough idea of volume and line needs so selecting the proper table should be easier.
Refrigerated prep tables have compartments in the top to provide easy access to prepped items. Be sure to know what activities your kitchen staff will be doing at this part of your line.
- Types of Food Stored:
Prep Tables are commonly used to store chilled ingredients for raw meats, pizzas, sandwiches, and salads as well as garnishes for finishing dishes.
Prep Coolers are commonly measured in widths and the number of standard 1/6-size 4” deep pans. Here is a list of common refrigerated prep table sizes:
Most manufacturers produce units that accommodate 6” and 8” deep pans. You may also be able to use 1/3 pans in some configurations.
Refrigerated prep tables have many different types of hinged covers for the easy access pan storage at the top of the unit. Many prep coolers are also equipped with full length removable cutting boards. Below the workstation, units have storage cabinets with insulated doors, pull out shelves, or drawers. The entire table will usually sit on heavy duty casters for easy mobility for cleaning in and around the prep cooler.
- Energy Source:
To ensure widespread compatibility with most foodservice situations, the majority of refrigerated prep tables run on single phase 115 volts. Your prep table will need to be plugged in to provide the refrigeration required.
- Temperature Range:
Most units are designed to maintain 33°F to 41°F product temperature in pans. Some models feature adjustable temperature controls provide the flexibility to chill a variety of products. Ensure that your unit is large enough to provide you ample space to any items you need to keep at these temperatures and within arms reach.
When considering the type of access you need to your prep cooler keep in mind the space needed to open doors or drawers. If the lower compartment of your prep table will be accessed constantly you need to consider the width of the isle when purchasing to ensure the prep table isn't causing undue congestion within the kitchen.
All prep coolers should be cleaned and sanitized, inside and out, particularly those used to prepare raw meat, chicken and seafood. Wire shelves can be cleaned in any warewashing appliance. Units on casters add mobility to ease thorough cleaning.
Key points to remember for finding the perfect size of prep cooler include capacity, space restrictions, cleaning ease and line functionality. If you have any questions about a particular function or specific item the knowledgable staff at ACityDiscount would be happy to help. Give us a call at 404-752-6715 or send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org