It’s a challenge trying to keep up with the latest foodservice equipment launches. It can mean hours of travel to the top industry exhibitions and more hours on the show floors themselves.
This we know something about. As editors we hit the major trade shows each year, spreading out to find items that meet new standards for efficiency, or approach an operational challenge in a whole different way. Like you, we rely on trade show attendance to track the newest designs and technologies and follow their developments.
With years of exhibition viewing under our belts—and the worn soles to prove it—we’ve seen more development in the areas of water efficiency, energy usage, advanced controls and ergonomic design in the last couple of years than we thought possible for this industry. And after reviewing the things we saw last year alone, we agreed that some items stood out from what was already a stand-out crowd.
So in this story we take another look at products we deemed worthy of special writeups after noting them at various shows in 2006. Whether they met new standards for energy efficiency or represented an approach to problem solving we had never found before, this set of 10 items deserve a second look.
In short, these suppliers have put development into high gear and come up with some of the best new cooking, holding, filtering, icemaking and washing products shown last year. Read on for details; companies appear in alphabetical order. And if you’re a supplier getting ready to roll out something significant at any of this year’s top events, let us know. We’ll swing by to take a look.
BAKING IN THE ROUND
You do more than just bake in-store. You create an experience, and you need an oven with a little sense of theater. Enter the new XR8-G Rotating Rack Oven, which continuously rotates an 8-pan rack and provides the low-velocity airflow needed to ensure an even, consistent bake. An internal steam system makes the unit suitable for baking bagels or any product with shiny crust. Meanwhile, a blower delay feature allows the convection fan to be turned off for as long as 10 mins. when baking delicate products. Slides and rack can be easily removed without tools for dishwasher cleaning. Features a Btu/hr. rating of 110,000 and ¾” drain.
HIGH-VOLUME WATER FILTERING IS HERE
Last year Everpure unveiled its new Ultra Filtration automatic self-flushing filtration system for high-volume or high-turbidity applications. The UF system features a hollow-fiber ultra-filtration membrane that provides filtration of particles as small as 0.02 microns. The multibore membrane also provides a barrier against bacteria, viruses and cysts. The UF prefilter is housed in a stainless steel casing and is pressure rated to 300 psi for continuous use. The system includes a multi-programmable controller, which initiates self-cleaning cycles using little water, and uses metered flushing, a technology that enables more programming options and greater control flexibility
AN ENERGY-EFFICIENT BROILER?
Yes, broiling and energy efficiency <I>can<I> go together, and if broiling is your business, you’ll want to look at the energy-sipping, high-powered unit rolled out by Garland Commercial at the 2006 NRA Show. Called the EEB, this new over-fired gas broiler uses 20% less gas than traditional models, says Garland, and boosts productivity by up to 35%, thanks to a more consistent cook temperature across the surface. A removable drip and grease container allows for easy cleanup and maintenance. And the unit will stand up over time, thanks to heavy-duty cast-iron grates and radiants, cast-iron “H” burners, a stainless steel cover over burner controls and a welded frame.
THE ‘TALL BOY’ OF HOT HOLDING
Have a high-demand item that you just can’t produce quickly enough? Or need to offer more menu choices? You <i>can<i> hold in quantity and maintain quality with Hatco’s new Flav-R-Savor Tall Humidified Holding Cabinet. The tall boy of holding stands 73 3/8” tall with casters and offers thermostatically controlled heat as well as a humidity control, a clear Lexan door with optional Dutch or stainless doors, and right- or left-hand hinges. Tray slides, 17 of them, on 3” centers, accept 17 sheet or Gastronorm pans, or 34 steam table pans. An optional transport package gets you stand-off handles and heavy-duty 5” x 2” casters (5” x 1” are standard), full-perimeter bumpers and flush-mount transport latch to secure the door during transit. In pass-through or solid-back models.
A QUIET, EFFICIENT ICE MACHINE
Last year Hoshizaki launched its new DKM-500 hotel ice machine and dispenser. Part of the Serenity Series, the DKM-500’s been designed for quiet operation from literally the top to the bottom. First, the compressor and refrigeration components are located at the bottom of the unit to allow more work room for servicing, but a byproduct of that is quieter operation, as refrigeration component sounds are released below ear level. Meanwhile, the unit features HoshiGuard antimicrobial agent in the ice-making zone to inhibit the growth of stuff you don’t want multiplying in your ice machine. And if energy efficiency is what you’re after, note the DKM-500 complies with California Energy Commission guidelines and qualifies for various rebate programs in that state. Footprint is 30”W x 28”D.
A FLIGHT-TYPE MADE FOR YOU
If the words “quiet operation” and “resource efficiency” don’t spring to mind when you think about flight-types, it’s time to take a look at the new-in-2006, fully customizable JFT. The machine comes with standard features to reduce operating noise, including insulated panels and a quieter pump system. And you’ll experience efficient use of resources, says Jackson, with a high-temp sanitizing rinse that utilizes a maximum of 140 gals./hr. The rackless, 2-spd. conveyor moves more than 17,000 dishes/hr., and wash arms offer nonclogging convex jets, equalized water pressure and uniform cleanability. Belt width on the JFT is 29”, and a 25” overhead clearance accommodates larger items.
LOTS OF NUGGETS IN A SMALL SPACE
Manitowoc unveiled its new countertop nugget ice maker and water dispenser at last year’s NRA Show. The SN Series is engineered to deliver large daily ice production levels and storage capacities within a small footprint, plus the nugget ice so many customers love. Dispensing functions include ice only, water only or a combination. Two models generate 325 lbs. of ice per day but offer different storage capacities of 12 lbs. and 20 lbs. You also get Manitowoc’s patented cleaning technology, which manages the cleaning process from start to finish with the flip of a switch, cleaning all surfaces that come in contact with the water distribution system. Footprint of both models is 16¼”W x 24”D; other features include touchless dispensing, large drain pan and stainless steel splash panel.
PIZZA THEATER IN THE ROUND
Some customers love pizza, and others love the drama of display cooking. Bring them all together with an open-air, rotating display pizza oven. Old Hickory has introduced “The View” Visual Pizza Oven as an intriguing and efficient way to better involve customers in their food. A gas-fired rotating metal disc bakes the crust, while an upper infrared heat source browns the cheese and toppings. You can bake six 18” pizzas at a time, with a capacity of up to 60 pies per hour. Drop the pie size to 12”, and the capacity is 140 per hour. Features include manually operated burner height, and a variable-speed rotating deck that heats in only 10 minutes. You can also use the unit for hot sandwiches, breads and calzones.
Old Hickory Bar B-Q Machines
MEET THE EINSTEIN OF ICE MACHINES
Finally, a really smart ice machine. Introduced in August, the new Prodigy from Scotsman Ice/Enodis not only helps maintain itself, it also saves electricity and water, says the company. For starters, Prodigy’s self-monitoring system gives you up-to-the-minute reporting on performance and maintenance needs. Prodigy’s SmartBoard streamlines preventative maintenance and repairs using a diagnostic code display that lets technicians quickly pinpoint any operating issues. And Prodigy is energy efficient; it’s one of the first cubers to exceed the 2008 California Energy Commission and 2010 Federal Energy Efficiency regulations. And on the water efficiency front, check out Prodigy’s WaterSense purge control. This minimizes scale build-up by automatically adjusting purge water amount to water conditions. Not too much, not too little, but just right.
COFFEE: EURO DESIGN, DIGITAL CONTROL
If you’re looking for a new approach to coffee brewing that’s stylish as well as high tech, turn to the Milano TPC15T, introduced in May. The digital brewing system’s Euro-inspired design offers the good looks, while the Generation Three digital control system provides control of everything from brewing time, temp and volume to gourmet coffee functions. You also get pre-set brewing recipes so you can simply select the coffee type and let the machine automatically set all brewing functions. Coffee brews into two 1.5-gal. vacuum-insulated servers that Curtis says offer a heat loss factor of less than 3[deg]F per hour Machine footprint is 20 3/8”W x 20¼D”.
Wilbur Curtis Co.