Be Prepared for Any Holiday Party

INDIANAPOLIS, October 25, 2007 — With the holidays soon approaching, it is important to be prepared in advance for the additional rush of diners. By following a few simple guidelines, any foodservice establishment can be ready for sizeable crowds and a festive atmosphere during the holiday season.

1. Make use of stainless steel chafers. Chafers are an easy way to allow self-service for diners in a presentable fashion. Most chafers hold standard full-size food pans which make prepping, cooking, storing and serving convenient. Food in a chafer stays warm when fuel is used in conjunction with the chafer, ensuring diners get food at the proper serving temperature. Be sure to have a serving utensil for each dish so that different foods do not get transferred from pan to pan.

2. Stock up on food pans. Food pans are versatile because meals can be prepped, cooked, frozen, reheated and served all in the same piece. A lot of foodservice equipment is designed to hold food pans, such as chafers, salad bars and hot food tables. With so many applications, standard food pans are a great staple to any foodservice location during the holiday season.

Chris Monico, CFSP, a Product Consultant at Central Restaurant Products, agrees. “You should have plenty of food pans on hand, ready to go to replenish your serving or buffet line quickly and discreetly. Portable food warmers and carriers [which hold the food pans] are great to ensure plenty of warm food on standby.”

3. Don’t forget the beverages. Alcoholic drinks are high-profit, frequently ordered items, especially during the holiday season. Maximize an establishment’s bar earnings by making certain that all of the basics are available and functioning properly before the holiday rush begins. Product Consultant Blair Dovidas says that shakers, strainers, pourers, wine chillers and ice buckets are musts for this busy time of year.

Mike Slapak, another Product Consultant, recommended several items to help keep drinks cold. Large capacity beverage bins, coolers and ice housings can hold huge quantities of ice and individually-sized bottles of soda, juice, water and beer.

4. Create a festive atmosphere. While completely redecorating for the holidays might be outside of budget, some simple switch-outs of everyday items can set the mood for the holidays. Switch the white tea lights in tabletop candle lamps for red and green ones. Make a dramatic focal point in the dining room with a one-time use ice sculpture mold accented by a string of holiday lights or decorations. These molds are simple to use and much less expensive than buying a professional sculpture.

Product Consultant Jon Coppedge says table skirting, napkins and tablecloths can get a holiday makeover as well. Casual foodservice locations can pick holiday-themed vinyl tablecloths. Vinyl tablecloths come in a variety of novelty prints to accent any holiday event. More formal foodservice location should consider purchasing a number of linens in solid, seasonal colors that can be rotated throughout the entire year.

For additional tips and ideas for holiday events, visit Central Restaurant Products.

About Central Restaurant Products:

Central Products opened in 1981 near downtown Indianapolis and has grown to become one of the nation’s leading distributors of quality commercial restaurant equipment and supplies. Central’s knowledgeable Product Consultants with industry experience are available during convenient hours–phone lines are open for business Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. EST and Saturday, 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. EST. They can be reached at 800.222.5107. Shop online; request a nearly 300-page color catalog or sign up for e-mail promotions at


Jorja Loughmiller, Copywriter
Central Restaurant Products
317.876.1010 ext. 8253

Central Restaurant Products
7750 Georgetown Rd.
Indianapolis, IN 46268
800.222.5107 (phone)
317.337.1100 (fax)