Before you embark on purchasing new food service equipment, it’s essential to understand the nuances that can make a difference. In this blog, we will unravel a few basic considerations and insights about selecting commercial buffet ware. So, the next time you go shopping for serving stations, serving trays, chafers, beverage dispensers, coffee pots or sneeze guards, you’ll be better prepared to make the right choices.  

The Art of Serving Stations  

If you have worked in the food service industry, you know that the right serving stations can make or break your business. A strategic selection of the most appropriate and attractive serving stations isn’t merely a matter of looks, but a delicate balance between functionality, quality, looks, and customer satisfaction.  

Aesthetic Appeal Meets Efficiency  

Serving stations are not just about functionality and efficiency; they are also a visual representation of your establishment’s ethos. Consider the ambience and overall theme of your food service business when selecting these stations. A casual café might benefit from rustic, wooden serving stations, while an upscale restaurant may opt for sleek, stainless steel designs. The choice should align with the customer experience you aim to provide.  

Sizing It Right  

Serving stations come in various sizes, and your selection should depend on the size of your establishment (or kitchen space) and the volume of customers you serve. It’s all about balancing demand and supply. A compact station might work for a cozy coffee shop, but a bustling cafeteria will need larger serving stations to accommodate the crowds.  

Ergonomics Matter  

When selecting serving stations, remember that design and ergonomics are pivotal. They should facilitate smooth customer flow, easy access to utensils and condiments, and provide a comfortable serving height for your staff. 

Reputed Brands  

When you go for the best brands in the business, you get what you pay for. Choosing premium-quality serving stations is sometimes worth the extra buck. They’re more durable, efficient, attractive, and cost-effective, standing the test of time. They make your customers, employees and you happy in the long run, giving you returns on your investment, year after year.  

Elevating Aesthetics with Attractive Serving Stations  

Design as an Experience  

Attractive serving stations not only enhance your food display but also contribute to a memorable dining experience. Their design should be harmonious with your brand identity. Opt for modern, classic, or themed designs that resonate with your target audience.  

Durability and Quality of Materials  

Your new food service equipment is not just going to be a tool but also an investment. So, the materials used in the serving stations you choose are crucial. Sturdy and long-lasting materials are a must, as they ensure that your investment stands the test of time. Stainless steel, for instance, is not only durable but also easy to clean and maintain.  

Cereal and Snack Dispensers: The Pros  

For businesses serving breakfast or offering cereals as part of their menu, cereal and snack dispensers can be game changers. These devices maintain the freshness of the cereals while making it easy for customers to dispense the precise amount they desire. Choose designs that keep the cereals protected from moisture and air to preserve their quality.   

Cereal dispensers provide a precise portion control mechanism, reducing food wastage and ensuring consistent servings. This is not only cost-effective but also promotes eco-friendliness.  

Barrier Shields and Sneeze Guards: A Hygienic Necessity 

In today’s health-conscious world, the importance of sneeze guards cannot be overstated. These transparent barriers protect the food on display from contamination.  They create a safer environment for customers and contribute to their peace of mind.  

Understanding local health and safety regulations is crucial when installing sneeze guards. Compliance ensures that you meet the required standards and maintain a safe and hygienic food service environment.  

How to go about choosing the right food service equipment?  

The ideal food service equipment setup is one that integrates all elements seamlessly, from serving stations that complement your décor to cereal dispensers that optimize portion control and sneeze guards that ensure the highest level of food safety.  

Consider the following tips as you navigate the world of food service equipment:  

  • Seek Professional Guidance: Consult with experts in the field who can provide personalized advice based on the unique needs of your business.  
  • Quality Over Price: It’s tempting to cut costs, but remember that quality equipment pays for itself in the long run through durability and customer satisfaction.  
  • Maintenance Matters: Factor in the maintenance requirements of the equipment you choose. Regular upkeep is essential for longevity and performance.  
  • Future-Proofing: Consider how your equipment choices will scale with your business. Can they accommodate growth and changing needs?  
  • Training: Ensure that your staff is adequately trained to use the equipment, which enhances safety and efficiency. 


Do Your Research  

You’ve heard the expression “buyer beware” and it holds true with commercial kitchen equipment as well. So, invest wisely and do your research. Here’s how:  

  • Research what equipment your business needs: Find out what other similar restaurants, bakeries, or caterers are using for their kitchen equipment.  Consider the size of your business and equipment.  
  • Research the equipment on ease of use: Does the equipment require special training or certification for employees like an induction chafer, gas range or deep fryer?  
  • Research and compare prices for similar equipment: Prices vary a lot with the brand and model but checking them might give you an idea and tell you if it’s a good deal or worth it.  
  • Research the warranty for your equipment: Make sure you read the warranties carefully, and they cover all facets of purchase, so you don’t get any surprises down the road when something breaks down.  
  • Research the after-sales service of the brand: After purchasing a piece of equipment after purchase, you want the best service. No one wants unexpected expenses! 

Putting It All Together  

The art of selecting food service equipment is an intricate balance of functionality, aesthetics, and compliance. For instance, the serving stations you select will set the stage for your offerings, attractive serving stations will elevate the dining experience, while cereal dispensers optimize convenience and portion control, and sneeze guards will ensure your guests have the highest hygiene and safety.  

While each element is distinct, they come together as parts of a whole, shaping the customer experience and the success of your food service establishment. So, before you embark on your next kitchen equipment purchase, remember that a well-informed decision is the key to a thriving business in the world of food service.   

Looking for the best quality food service equipment online?  

If you want durable, elegant, cost-effective, and efficient, check out our wide range of food service equipment including high-quality serving stations from premium brands at the EKE website.