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Mise En Place: Streamlining and Efficiency for Commercial Foodservice

Mise En Place - Streamlining and Efficiency for Commercial Foodservice

Life in a commercial kitchen can be fast, hectic, and stressful.

Having a well-stocked and organized kitchen can go a long way to ensure the kitchen's smooth operation, which will ultimately lead to happier guests and greater profitability. One way that commercial foodservice operations can optimize for efficiency is by preparing stations with mise en place best practices.

What is Mise En Place?

Most lovers of food will agree that cooking is an art, and it requires the same amount of intentionality that a painter would bring to a creation. Mise en place is a French term that translates to "to set up" or "to put things into place." In practice, mise en place is the preparation of food and organization of equipment before a chef begins to cook. Mise en place serves a crucial role in the cooking process, similar to an artist who sets up his palette with different hues of paint before beginning to work on a canvas.

It is unclear how long mise en place has been around in the culinary world, but it likely dates back to the late 1800s. Regardless of when it originated, it is a strategy that chefs take incredibly seriously. Some go so far as to call it a religion, while others have it tattooed on their bodies.

An effective mise en place strategy allows culinary professionals to coordinate labor and materials while promoting focus and self-discipline. To get the maximum benefit out of mise en place, a chef should be able to navigate his or her workstation blindfolded.

Preparing Mise En Place

Every chef in a commercial kitchen will have their own strategy for executing mise en place. At its core, however, this plan will center on ensuring that kitchen tools and ingredients are prepared and organized in the most efficient way to prepare food.

The first step in creating a mise en place plan is to prepare a list. The list should include all the steps, ingredients, and tools necessary to execute the kitchen's tasks. It should detail prep tasks necessary for execution of the dishes.

Next comes organization and preparation. While the exact preparation will depend on the menu, it could include:

  • Gathering and organizing all cooking implements, such as mixing pools, knives, and pans;
  • Washing, peeling, and chopping vegetables;
  • Trimming and portioning meat;
  • Deboning and filleting fish;
  • Measuring spices;
  • Portioning liquids such as broth

Finally, mise en place should include a focus on cleanliness. An organized station will allow chefs to clean as they go.  This ensures that all tools and implements are clean and accessible when they are needed.

Benefits of Mise En Place

The most critical benefit of mise en place is its ability to bring efficiencies to commercial kitchens. Some of the ways mise en place maximizes efficiency include:

  • Planning work in advance: Preparing ingredients and work spaces allow chefs to spot any items that are missing or low in inventory and can plan necessary modifications ahead of time;
  • Streamline the work process: Having all items for a dish prepared and in one location reduces the amount of time a chef must spend moving about the kitchen;
  • Promoting ownership: In a kitchen with multiple stations, each chef can feel in control of and take ownership over the preparation of their station; and
  • Keeping things clean: The theory of "clean as you go" is important in many professional kitchens. Having an organized station allows chefs to more effectively plan for cleaning throughout the cooking process.

Institute Mise En Place in Your Operation

If you are looking to institute or improve the mise en place method in your foodservice operation, Lakeside has the equipment that will allow you to create the most effective and efficient workspaces. Our products including action stationsutility carts, and stationary and mobile kitchen support equipment – all which can be configured to optimize the flow of a commercial kitchen. Contact us today to find out how we can help or check out more on our mise en place cart below.

 

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The Importance of Flexibility in Foodservice

Flexibility is a great way to create happy customers, and it's an even better way to increase profits.

All across the landscape of food and beverage, we're seeing certain types of operations go beyond their traditional services as they look for greater potential. C-stores are becoming more like coffee shops. Coffee shops are gaining fast casual characteristics. Fast casual restaurants are taking on more fine-dining type elements. And all across our industry, cross over is becoming commonplace.

Essentially, it's up to operators to think outside the box. How are they doing this? For starters, they're rethinking common conceptions about food and beverage service times and are coming up with some creative alternatives.

Just because an operation thrives as a high-end coffee shop during the day doesn't mean it has to close its doors at night. A serving cart that provides pastries and cereals for breakfast can also double as a dessert bar at night. Omelet stations for brunch can shift out their service to a pasta station at night. That coffee shop we mentioned? What if it doubled as a cocktail bar at night?

The key here is flexibility -- flexibility in thought, flexibility in concept, flexibility in execution, and the flexibility in the equipment it takes to pull it all off.

MENU VERSATILITY

When it comes to flexible serving options, the first thing to consider is the ability to serve multiple types of menu items from the same location. This means a given piece of real estate can be attractive to customers and guests for greater periods of time. This is the ultimate in flexibility and profitability.

MOBILITY

The next step in flexibility is having the ability to take foods and beverages to the guest instead of the guest needing to come to the operator. Mobile serving stations are an easy way to transform the point-of-sale from point-to-point.

USABILITY

The final aspect of flexibility is to find equipment that is known for its usability. How easy is it to transform a serving cart from breakfast service to lunch? Are carts easy to move? How long does it take to clean? What about service and maintenance? The bottom line is flexibility is only implemented by staff members, so equipment needs to be easy to use.

MISE EN PLACE

For the ultimate in flexibility, consider the Lakeside Mise En Place cart.  It easily transitions from a back-of-house helper to a front-of-house money maker.  Explore ideas and get inspired with more information here.

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The Advantages of Rolling Food Carts in Your Restaurant

There’s a popular phrase made famous by an old movie. Build it, and they will come.

 While this may be true in many respects, restaurant owners and foodservice operators are getting smarter about how they drive up sales, and a new phrase has emerged.

Bring it, and they will buy.

What does this mean, specifically? Bringing menu selections directly to the customer is an easy way to help entice those customers to buy. Instead of selling at the point-of-purchase as they do so well in retail, restaurants have figured out they can actually bring the point-of-purchase to the table.

In reality, this is not a foreign concept. Well, in the case of Brazilian steakhouses, maybe it is. But think of how many times you’ve witnessed a roving cheese cart or the end-of-meal dessert cart as it made its way through a maze of diners until it reached your table.

Later, this idea grew to include other popular tableside items. The tableside Caeser salad. The tableside guacamole cart. Tableside preparations of desserts like Baked Alaska or Banana’s Foster. Now that we think about it, rolling food carts have been popular across a wide range of dining periods in our country.

But, it doesn’t have to stop with only what we’re used to. Tableside dining options and rolling food carts offer restaurateurs the ability to literally make the appetizers more appetizing. Think about it.

Imagine if you’re at a restaurant with your significant other, a place you’ve never tried before but heard was good. Before you even order your main dishes, a server comes by with a cart full of beautifully-made appetizers. At that moment, when you’re the most hungry, you are much more likely to not only order one, but several of the options presented.

For the diner, this type of service is more engaging and allows for greater participation. For the operator, it’s more profitable. Everyone wins, and anything you can say that, it’s an advantage for your restaurant.

Even more important, though, is the experience tableside service can provide to customers. From glamorous tableside in LA to old-school, traditional tableside dishes in NYC, this area is sure to see growth in the coming years. And in an era when diners are looking for experiences at the same time operators are looking for new ways to create profit potential, tableside service seems like a no-brainer.

For more information on carts for your restaurant, please contact us.  We love to talk carts!

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An Easy Way to Increase Beverage Sales on Your Patio or Veranda

An Easy Way to Increase Beverage Sales on Your Patio or Veranda

We’ve pretty much all been there. You’re flying across the country, you need to use the restroom, the seatbelt light goes off, but then you’re stuck in place behind the drink cart.

In this sense, the drink cart gets a bad reputation, but it doesn’t have to be like that. The reality is, drink carts and mobile bars are a great way to bring hospitality and service directly to the customer while increasing profits for the operation. But to fully bake this concept, let’s think about it from each perspective:

Mobile Drink Carts from the Customer Perspective

As we’ve mentioned before, tableside service provides a great experience for diners. It’s engaging. It allows for a more informed selection. It’s fun!

When a drink cart or mobile bar is rolled to the tableside, it allows consumers to view the different types of spirits that are available. They can check out the garnishes or the glassware. And they can enjoy the experience of seeing a trained bartender or mixologist create a magnificent concoction right there at the table.

Perhaps the most important factor for diners, though, is the convenience a mobile beverage cart can provide. Astute bartenders who operate rolling bars can see when a table is in need of refreshing and literally be right there within a matter of seconds. Another round without having to get up? Great! Another round without having to wait for a server who then has to wait for the bar who then has to wait for the server to return! Even better!

Mobile Drink Carts from the Operator Perspective

Those benefits and conveniences for guests translate directly to profit potential for operators. There’s no better way to say it.

As everyone knows in the bar and beverage industry, time is money. When a bartender can actually roam from table to table keeping an eye on who needs a refresher, it decreases the time customers have to wait for their next beverage. This can lead to more frequent orders, which translates to profits.

Mobile bars are also a great form of advertising. What do you think newly-arrived guests will first notice about your dining room as a cart full of cocktails moves across the room from table to table? Almost certainly, they’ll be waiting for that cart to arrive to see what the offerings are.

Mobile drink carts can also help an operation expand its space. As we mentioned, the bar is often the most profitable part of an operation, but what if the physical bar is limited by space? Mobile bars can help increase output potential and better maximize reach. In fact, it’s not uncommon for a restaurant with a small bar to sell one-third of all it’s bar sales from a couple of roaming drink carts. If the bar is typically the most profitable center of an entire restaurant or foodservice operation, why not bring the bar to the customer?

Lastly, there’s the ability to bring the type of bar that’s most profitable to the guest. Instead of putting cheap wells on a roving beverage cart, operators have the ability to hand-select spirits, wines, and other offerings that are most profitable. This creates an enormous upselling opportunity, and if it's a house-made speciality cocktail, it's a marketing opportunity, as well.

Consider the Lakeside Mise En Place cart for use in beverage sales and tableside service.  The versatility allows for an easy transition from front-of-house to back-of-house.  Explore more ideas below.

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Make Your Brunch Service Memorable with an Omelet Station

Make Your Brunch Service Memorable with an Omelet Station

A breakfast buffet can be one of the most anticipated and enjoyable aspects when staying at a hotel.

In fact, it’s one of the things that can help differentiate a hospitality-driven property from house-sharing companies like Airbnb and VRBO. Add an omelet station to that buffet, and guests just might think they’ve found hospitality heaven.

Why?

Diners can enjoy a customized experience as they choose with the ingredients they most crave. The omelet chef can not only expertly cooks superb omelets while guests watch, but he or she can also chat with guests, offer them true hospitality, and even offer tips about local attractions and activities.

Omelet stations bring breakfast dining to a whole new level.

What is an Omelet Station?

An omelet station is a breakfast hub where guests can take advantage of customized omelets cooked the way they like them. It is breakfast without the boring, service without the fuss. Omelet stations are ideally attended by a friendly omelet chef who takes the time to listen to the diner's preferences. The chef then expertly prepares the perfect omelet filled with the ingredients guests love.

The options for omelet fillings are limitless, with creative combinations ready to explore and savor. The chef can easily conjure up a meat-filled wonder stuffed with flavorful bacon, sausage, or even grilled shrimp. Vegetable-lovers are treated to a variety of choices including avocado or artichoke hearts. Classic cheese omelets can always be whipped up using a choice of interesting herbs and cheeses.

Of course, the best omelet stations require state-of-the-art equipment to succeed, and Lakeside Foodservice carries everything you need to help build an efficient and attractive omelet station that can help differentiate an operation from other options. And when you provide a satisfying experience, people will hear about it.

A BREAKFAST TO BRAG ABOUT:

Hoteliers can get a competitive advantage by making sure their omelet station stands out. It's easy to have guests raving about their breakfast experience long after they are gone by taking a few simple steps. A top-of-the-line omelet station helps boost ratings and encourages positive reviews.

Offer a Variety - People like choices and variety in a breakfast buffet, and offering a comprehensive menu selection can make all the difference. Chefs should be at hand to guide guests as they decide what combination of ingredients they want in the omelet. The chef should be knowledgeable about special diet requirements including gluten-free and soy-based options.

Offer a Greeting - Great food and a creative selection are only part of what turns breakfast guests into happy, repeat customers. A warm smile and a hearty morning greeting make guests feel welcomed and comfortable. The omelet station and its chef should be a friendly reminder of everything that is good about hotel dining.

Offer Ambiance - Helping guests to start their day is also about presentation. Soft joyful music in the background along with a clean and colorful station can set a positive mood. Using special plates and sparkling silverware can enhance the breakfast ambiance. Ingredient displays should be as cheerful as the chef creating a happy experience sure to bring the guests back for dinner.

Offer Knowledge - Good omelet-makers are not only skillful at assembling the perfect egg masterpiece, but they are also a wealth of local and venue information. They can talk about local traditional recipes or advise guests about low-calorie food choices. They should be as much prepared to answer questions about hotel operations as they are about community events and activities.

Benefits of an Omelet Station

There is something satisfying about watching a chef prepare what you are about to eat. Guests love the chance to interact with the cook knowing what ends up on the plate will be hot and fresh. The transparency of open cook-to-order omelet stations gives guests peace of mind while providing entertainment and the opportunity for hotels to shine.

Lakeside Foodservice has over 70 years of experience providing innovative and efficient equipment to the industry. Our friendly team of professionals offers customized and modified solutions to fit individual challenges and needs. Lakeside proudly manufactures all of its products in the U.S.A. Contact us anytime and let us know how we can be at your service.

With over 70 years of experience, Lakeside is perfectly situated to help implement an omelet station for brunch service. Lakeside offers a diverse product line that supports all your needs, including storing, heating, cooling, and display. We focus on collaboration with customers to find the perfect product solutions.

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Foodservice Equipment Options to Enhance College Foodservice

College and university campuses are big places that require a whole range of different foodservice options.

From students who are on-to-go and short on time to alumni functions that can be so important to fundraising, the ability to provide foodservice to a variety of people in a number of diverse ways can help a college or university stand out. Service isn't always easy, though, and sometimes requires some innovative service solutions.

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Mastering the Basics of Bussing

If you run a professional kitchen, you are well aware that a smooth flow of staff can make or break a successful evening of service.

From avoiding tickets getting hung up in the kitchen to ensuring there are clean plates, every individual's contribution is critical to success. One key role that can often go overlooked is the busser. Read on to better understand the critical role of the busser and to pick up a few tips to help staff members successfully clear tables and improve customer experience.

Bussing: A Critical Component

Every person operating in a restaurant contributes to the success of the group, and this includes the busser. They serve a number of important functions that require experience and training.

Focus on Service

Happy guests are a must for a successful restaurant, and bussers are on the frontline of preserving the guest experience. When guests arrive, they should be met with a clean table and quickly provided a glass of water. The water should be replenished as needed, and guests shouldn't be left with dirty dishes in front of them. These are all obvious ways that bussers contribute to positive guest experiences.

There are less obvious ways that bussers can contribute – or detract – from the customer experience as well. Leaving tubs of dirty dishes in the line of sight of guests isn't appetizing. If a busser is frazzled, this contributes frenetic energy to what should be a welcoming atmosphere.

Regardless of how your establishment employs bussers, there is no doubt that having a skilled and highly trained bussing staff will elevate guests' dining experience.

Encourage Kitchen Flow

While keeping guests happy is of vital importance, it isn't the only way bussers are important to a restaurant kitchen. Bussers are responsible for delivering an essential item to foodservice: flatware and dinnerware. Restaurants need to optimize their budgets, which means they can't keep a never-ending supply of dishes and flatware in stock.

Bussers are responsible for getting dirty dishes back to dishwashers, who then get dishes cleaned and back in circulation. If bussers aren't appropriately staffed or trained to efficiently move dishes, this could cause a backlog for the entire kitchen.

Tips for Training Bussers

One of the most important factors in efficient bussing is having well-trained staff. Make sure your staff is trained with the following in mind:

  • Have a restaurant-wide plan. Be clear on what your establishment's position is on bussing. Must all guests' plates be cleared at one time, or should they be cleared as each guest finishes? Is there an order of priority in which dishes should be cleared?
  • Read the table. While bussers may not interact with guests as much as the wait staff, they still need to read guest preferences. While guests don't want to feel rushed, they also don't want to sit with empty dishes for an extended period of time. Work with your bussers to help them pick up on guest cues to avoid guests feeling rushed or ignored.
  • Communication is key. Bussers need to feel comfortable with the rest of the staff so the entire staff can communicate concerns or needs. 
  • Understand the basics. Bussers need to be well-versed in basic restaurant service skills, such as folding napkins, when silverware should be replaced, whether plates should be removed on a tray, and how to properly crumb a table.

Having a highly-operating bussing staff will ease the burdens for the rest of the kitchen.

Find the Right Equipment

Even if your bussing staff is well-trained, they can't operate at the highest level without the right equipment. Lakeside offers personalized solutions that help foodservice directors manage their responsibilities by providing knowledgeable experts to advise on products and equipment. Lakeside can help your team select the best bussing products to optimize your kitchen experience. Contact us today to find out how we can help.

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The Benefits of Theater Cooking

Theater cooking and open kitchens are becoming a prominent and popular feature in the foodservice industry.

There are many ways that restaurants can incorporate elements of theater cooking, from a completely open kitchen to implementing action stations throughout the restaurant. Here are some benefits to incorporating theater cooking into a dining establishment, as well as some considerations for making this happen.

Highlighting the Dining Experience

Theater cooking brings with it a number of benefits, all of which can result in increased engagement and satisfaction from patrons. As younger demographics place more and more value on experiences, these items will become more and more important.

Provide an Experience

It is not surprising to see experiential dining increase in popularity given the focus Millennials place on dining out and documenting their dining experiences. Theater dining allows visitors to get more than just food for their money. They’re able to engage with the chefs, learn a bit about cooking, and have easy and engaging conversation topics to share with their fellow diners.

The icing on the cake is that theater dining makes for great social media content – for owners and patrons alike. Simply put, with open-style kitchens, dining can be as much about the entertainment as it is about the food.

Be Transparent

Theater dining is more than an experience. It also provides diners assurance that their food is being cooked in a skilled manner and in a clean environment. It also increases engagement between the chef and diners. A study has found that by allowing chefs to view the diners, they become more committed to providing quality food. The ability of chefs to feel the appreciation of the diners increases the quality of the food they produce. 

Save Space

Adopting an open kitchen can provide valuable, additional real estate, which can be critical given the costs of purchasing or renting a restaurant space. Open kitchens eliminate the wasted spaces between the kitchen and dining spaces, which can potentially lead to additional seating around the kitchen. This space-saving can mean the ability to serve many additional diners during each service.

Enhance Appetites

It has been found that seeing and smelling food can increase an individual's appetite. Putting your restaurant’s great food front and center will allow diners to be tantalized by the delicious smells and tempted by all the great food they see being prepared in the kitchen. 

Setting Up Your Open Kitchen

While it’s clear that theater dining can bring valuable benefits to a restaurant, setting up an open kitchen or action stations requires different equipment considerations than a traditional restaurant kitchen. You will need to decide whether to open up the main cooking area or create smaller action stations throughout the restaurant that feature specific food preparations. Operators also need to decide where to locate dishwashing and other functions that aren’t desirable for display.

Once the format of the kitchen is determined, the next step is to analyze the types of foods that will be prepared along with what equipment is required to execute the menu. For example, pizza, bread, and pastries could be well-served by a wood burning oven. A wok range could service a large variety of cooking styles, including Asian, Middle Eastern, and Italian. If you are serving Mexican or traditional American food, a grill or griddle might be a better option. Be sure to consider any regulations for your local areas, such as sanitation and ventilation. Just because you open up the kitchen, this doesn't relieve you of complying with these requirements.

Action stations can also provide a similar type of open-cooking presentation. The difference between action stations and bringing the back-of-the-house to the front is one of mobility. It’s hard to move a kitchen, but action stations can be relocated.

Lakeside Can Help:

With over 70 years of experience, Lakeside is perfectly situated to help you create a theater dining experience perfect for your restaurant. Lakeside offers a diverse product line that supports all your needs, including storing, heating, cooling, and display. We focus on collaboration with customers to find the perfect product solutions.

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Top 10 Current Chef-Focused Trends

Each year, the National Restaurant Association conducts a survey to identify the hottest culinary trends.

This year's survey tells us in no uncertain terms that sustainability, hyper-locally sourced foods, plant-based foods, and vegetable-focused dishes are some of the nation's hottest food trends. Below, we've provided the NRA's top-10 list of current chef-focused trends which restaurants are following to meet customer demands for sustainability, nutrition, taste, and personal choice.

1. Cannabis/CBD oil-infused drinks

According to the "What's Hot Culinary Forecast," 77% of the American Culinary Federation chefs placed drinks infused with cannabis or CBD as the top trend. And it's anticipated that this trend will only become more popular in the future as more states legalize cannabis.

2. Cannabis/CBD oil-infused foods

For some time, cannabis-enhanced foods were limited to desserts. Now, however, chefs are experimenting with all sorts of healthy options across the menu, made from cannabis-infused ingredients such as honey, nuts, coffee, and all-natural teas.

3. Zero-waste cooking

Zero-waste cooking ranks as the third top trend overall for 2019. Each day, chefs are finding more ways to use all parts of a food product, particularly plant-based items. As the NRA reports, chefs are now using coffee grounds to flavor ice cream as a way of reducing food waste. They're even using cabbage butts in stir-fries, not letting even the smallest usable portion of a plant-based food go to waste.

4. Globally-inspired breakfast dishes 

Chefs are searching the world in person and on the internet to find inspiration for breakfast dishes. Rice, soup, vegetable-and-bean bowls (like the Hawaiian poke bowl, the traditional Latin American rice and beans, or Asian rice dishes), are becoming popular for breakfast. And not only are they high in nutrition, but they're always carefully prepared and made into a great presentation from to appeal to today's highly visual consumer.

5. Global flavors in kids' meals

Chefs are taking inspiration from spices and flavors from North, West, and East African cuisine, Latin America and Spain, and Asian countries to influence kids' meals. Turmeric, ginger, and Asian spices (particularly Korean and Filipino flavors) are showing up on children's menus.

6. Hyper-local food sources

Chefs are going as far as using plant-based foods that come right from the restaurant's own gardens. When that's not possible, they rely on local farmers' markets and other hyper-local food sources so that the farm-to-table connection is absolutely transparent to today's consumer.

7. New cuts of meat 

New cuts of meat such as shoulder tender, Merlot cut, or oyster-cut steak made the top trending spot for the last two years according to the NRA. These once "secret" cuts are now becoming more common, although the NRA notes that they are starting to drop in popularity this year as plant-based dishes continue to be on the rise.

8. Vegetable-centered dishes

In 2019, chefs don't believe that you have to be vegan or vegetarian to enjoy a good rice and bean dish made with an exquisite mixture of spices and visually appealing fresh vegetables. After trying some of these attractive and tasty vegetable-centric meals, many meat-eating customers will think about eating vegetarian at least a couple of times a week.

9. Fast-casual concepts

Fast-food chains are consulting some of the country's most renown chefs to come up with their hallmark non-meat feature. Burger King's Impossible Burger is one key example. In these carefully crafted dishes, you'll find global spices combined with plant-based foods in the form of veg burgers and salads, or meats prepared in innovative ways.

10. Craft beers, artisan, and locally produced spirits

Craft and artisan alcoholic beverages that are produced locally have been the rage for some time, and continue to be popular in 2019. Chefs frequently have their own favorites, if not their own special house brew.

These are just a few of the new innovations which chefs are making available throughout the food service industry. For more information on macro and micro trends facing the foodservice industry, download our full Trends e-Report.

2019 Foodservice Trends Report CTA

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Rethinking Counter Space in College Foodservice Dining

Are you maximizing the point-of-sale potential in your college and university dining facilities?

This is the question all foodservice directors should consider, as the point-of-sale is the ideal place to help drive impulse purchases and drive sales. But how? Whether it's a serving line or a pop-up location created to attract those students who don't have a lot of time on their way across campus, there are a few important things to consider when optimizing the point-of-sale.

START WITH APPEARANCE.

Appearances matter. Though the flavor is ultimately the most important factor, it's hard to impress students with flavor unless they're selecting your foods in the first place. The easiest way to do this is to remember we first eat with our eyes.

When you spruce up your countertop and serving lines with décor, seasonal ambiance, or attractive displays, students will be more apt to buy. Try to highlight concepts like freshness and cleanliness.  Use items that are interesting and texturally different, or props with enhanced, current styles that they can identify with.

Lighting can play a big role, as well. When you use high-quality lights like LED overhead lighting, food colors will look sharper when compared to lighting that is muted and dull. Lighting showcases your product and makes it appetizing. And remember, we live in a world of #instafood. Amongst today's demographics, this isn't just reserved for fine dining.

USE SIGNS.

Signs can serve multiple purposes. First and foremost, they provide direction. Where does the line begin? Where do I pay? What are they serving in this kiosk? These are all basic questions that students ask, and with signs, they can be answered from across the room allowing students to focus on the real decisions -- menu selection -- once they're in closer proximity.

Signs also create ambiance, tone and style. More and more, college and university dining is going away from the stereotypical serving line. Where are the trends heading? Food courts, food halls, and anything that helps make a location look like an off-campus restaurant. That's what signs can help achieve.

SAVE SPACE FOR MERCHANDISING.

Lastly, don't forget about the power of merchandising on your countertops and pop-up, kiosk-type spaces. Think about how foods are arranged. Make sure they're organized and not overcrowded, but still maintaining the appearance of abundance that's so important in food displays. The neater and more organized, the easier it will be for time-strapped students to find what they're looking for, and even not what they're looking for. In other words, go for the impulse sale.

When it comes to merchandising, don't forget the beverages, either. Beverage displays or dispensers can lead to add-on purchases, or they can be the reason for the visit in the first place. Either way, beverages are an important part of the overall merchandising strategy.


Are you looking for more information on how to maximize the potential of your college and university pop-up dining spaces? Lakeside can provide great insight into some other things to consider, as well as some equipment options that can help put them in action.


Get the Top Tips that Turn Your Underused
Spaces into Revenue Generating Venues!

Your student body is always busy, always on-the-go.  From tests and papers, to attending the "big game," and even participating in sports at all levels, they barely have time to get a decent meal.  When it comes to foodservice, you need to catch them in places outside of your normal venues. This is where our set of quick tips can help you out.  This brief guide will get you thinking "outside of the box."  You'll be able to see hidden, underutilized spaces where you can bring foodservice to new places on your campus. Download it today!