KITCHEN EQUIPMENT FOR YOU TEA ROOM
Kitchen equipment for a tea room is a major decision. It will be the major purchase you make when starting your tea room. Below is a list of the basic kitchen equipment you will need.
The first person you should contact is your local health inspector. They love for you to be pro-active. Make this person your best friend. They are happy to assist you in your planning and start-up phase.
Most officials have little understanding of what afternoon tea involves. They will probably treat you as if you are a full service restaurant unless you can explain what a tea shop is and convince them otherwise.
Be sure your kitchen has plenty of work space. Keep the tea preparation area to itself if at all possible. Here are some suggestions for equipping your tea room kitchen.
Refrigerator large enough to hold trays
Stove or Induction Burner
Oven(s) or Convection Oven
3-compartment stainless steel sink with depth to wash large pans
Water filter for your tea water
Hot water dispenser
Ice machine if you plan to use ice
Cups & saucers
Pots and pans
Tea storage containers
LINENS AND PAPER
Cloth napkins (send them to the laundry or have linen service)
A good source for a lot of your kitchen needs is Serv-U Online.
One advantage to using a linen service is they pick up and deliver. Also, you can change the color of your napkins with the season. Christmas you can use red and green, red over Valentines, pastels for spring, red, white, and blue for the 4th of July, bright green for summer, bright yellow or orange for fall. Change your table cloth colors to match the seasons, too.
One decision you will have to make is whether to use glass or plastic toppers on your tables. You may decide not to use either one. Their use will save you many dollars and time on cleaning linens. If you use them you can also place decorations under them. For instance, in the fall you can place fall leaves or fall confetti under them to brighten up your tables.
You may find you don't really need to buy a stove with burners because you can use an induction burner. This is similar to a hot plate, but boils water in less than a minute. It is not expensive when compared to a stove. It also is very small and doesn't take up much room. You do need to have special flat bottom pans to use on it. I have found in a tea room, your only need burners to boil eggs and to make lemon curd if you are not purchasing it.
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