Kitchen layouts say a lot about your business more than you know.
An efficient kitchen layout reflects well thought out plan with the kitchen workflow and working environment in mind.
However, the kitchen layout is not the end-all and be all if you want to attain kitchen efficiency. Sometimes, chefs don’t have any choice on the matter. Sometimes they need to work even on complex crampy kitchen setups. And that’s when their chef’s skills take the spotlight – when they can still produce quality and timely meals, despite the available structure. Great chefs can work and adapt to various types of kitchens.
Still, you can’t deny that an efficient layout presents a better format for the whole working process for the chef and kitchen team.
The last blog’s topic touched on setting up an efficient kitchen layout for your food business. Now it’s time to talk about the different types of commercial kitchen layouts and which is a good fit for you. Let’s start with the Assembly Line Kitchen Layout.
What is an Assembly Line Kitchen Layout?
As the name suggests, this setup is in an assembly line fashion where the food prep starts from one end, and the finished dish ends at the other. Typically, there is a central row or island where ingredients and the work area are organised in a single line.
This layout focuses on the assembly of each dish.
Who benefits from this layout?
- Food businesses that don’t have a wide range of dishes on their menu can benefit from an assembly line layout. Service can be straightforward and fast if the same types of dishes are replicated repeatedly in a systemic fashion.
- This layout is also great when serving many people fast, such as cafeterias, fast food or fast-casual, where the ease of reach can make working quickly. The work transition can be seamless until the final dish is completed, packed or handed over to the customer.
- Food businesses with multiple workers, and each takes charge of a part in the production process.
How does it work?
The kitchen equipment is organised in line with the food preparation area and the service area at the other. Whether the start of the workflow is situated in the left or right is dependent on the available space you have for customers to form a line, get their food and exit smoothly without bumping into other customers. The workflow begins in the prep area, where ingredients are handled and assembled for cooking. The action then moves on to the cooking area, and afterwards, plated or packaged in the service area for handing over. Because there is less need for movement as the kitchen team transitions from one station to another, the food can be quickly sent down the line. To save even more space, sometimes equipment can be linked together.
The washing and storage/receiving areas can be located behind the assembly line for sanitary and aesthetic reasons. You don’t want the washing area close to the food preparation area, and customers would rather not see dirty dishes near where food is cooked.
If your dishes accommodate customisation, this layout can facilitate that.
Because customers have a good view of the whole action, it is challenging to work where people can easily comment on how their food is prepared. When you have this layout, you have to ensure that your kitchen team adheres to strict sanitary procedures. Whether it calls for frequent handwashing or use of disposable gloves or implementing routine hygienic cleanup of the station, you need to make the customers see how you take health and food safety seriously.
An assembly line kitchen layout is precisely about that – assembly. It is a linear approach to prepare food and hand it over to the customer quickly.
An efficient restaurant kitchen layout and workflow can make a world of difference to the quality of food and service you deliver and your staff’s well-being.
If you are based in Perth or WA and needs assistance in creating an efficient workflow in your kitchen, give us a call and let us help you make the cafe or restaurant of your dreams.
That’s it for this week.
As always, Professional Chefs on Call at Anytime!
Ciao for now,