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Blog posts from July, 2014

6 of the best blogs to follow on the Restaurant Industry

Blogging is an awesome way to learn new information about your industry. It generally provides short, relevant and (sometimes) entertaining articles that can be easily consumed when you have the time. We’ve learned so much from other blogs in terms of the statistics and other research about the foodservice industry simply by following blogs of interest.

Because we’ve learned so much, we wanted to pass on the favour by compiling some of the best blogs to follow on the restaurant industry.

So without further ado here's our list of our favourite food and foodservice bloggers! (Note these aren’t in any particular order)

Technomic’s Blog:

Technomic Blog


CHD Experts – A Blog Powered by Foodservice Data:

CHD Experts Blog's Blog: Blog


Order Up, The Official Blog of Restaurants Canada:

Restaurant Central Blog


Eater National: The National Restaurant, Bar, Nightlife and Food Blog:

Eater Blog Food News:

Food Beast Blog


There are (we’re sure!) many other awesome food and foodservice bloggers out there – share them with us in the comments or tweet us on Twitter with your top picks!

Restaurant Dishes Aside: 5 Tweetable Quotes from Famous Chefs to New Culinary Graduates

Restaurant DishesOne of the things I admire most about the foodservice and restaurant industry is the culture of mentorship. Chefs of both notorious Michelin star restaurants and humble small town diners alike understand and cultivate the benefits of being a mentor. Perhaps it happened by accident, perhaps you set out to make a difference while sharing your passion for cooking. Whatever the reason for doing so, mentoring new culinary graduates or chefs with the passion but limited training, is one of the reasons mainstream culture has gravitated towards this industry.

Restaurant shows are popping up left right and center romanticizing the restaurant industry. What restaurant shows don’t always show is the grueling hours, backbreaking work and decisions that need to happen to keep a restaurant operational, such as finding new restaurant dishes that don’t eat into a restaurant’s profits. However what’s clear is it brings together people, passion and a hell of a lot of AH-MAZ-ING food.

To pay it forward, and help continue on the tradition of being a mentor to new culinary stars, we’ve compiled 5 tweetable quotes from famous chefs – with career advice and wisdom that should go a long way to shaping your future. If you're feeling inspired by the quotes below, feel free to click each quote to tweet it individually.

“Work ethic and attitude is everything. It's the only thing that matters.” (Click to Tweet)

“I would take a less knowledgeable cook with a great attitude and work ethic over a talented prodigy with pissy attitude any day of the week. It will always make for a better team at the restaurant. I can't tell you how many amazing cooks have been through my kitchens and simply have not made the cut because of their attitude. And guess what? Three, four, five years later those cooks are still line cooks. They still complain about how much everybody else sucks around them. If you're a line cook at 25 and still one at 35, it's time to look in the mirror. I can guarantee that YOU are the problem not anyone else.”—first published in HuffPost Taste

Marc Vetri, Chef/Founder of Philadelphia’s critically acclaimed Vetri Family of Restaurants


“Taste everything. Learn to love all flavors, textures, and appreciate them for what they are.” (Click to Tweet)

“Taste everything. Learn to love all flavors, textures, and appreciate them for what they are. If you aren't tasting it, how can you serve it?”—first published in Dallas Observer’s Burning Questions Blog

Brian Zenner, Executive Chef, Belly & Trumpet


“Always be willing to learn from others. Be open-minded. Leave your ego at the door.” (Click to Tweet)

“Be relentless in the achievement of your goals. Stick to what you believe in. Surround yourself with people that support and believe in what you are trying to do. Always be willing to learn from others. Be open-minded. Leave your ego at the door. Taste your food.” – first published in Canadian Restaurant & Foodservice News July/August 2014 Issue

Steve McGoey, Corporate Chef, Keg Restaurants


“You need to fully understand the business, because at the end of the day it is a business.” (Click to Tweet)

“You need to fully understand the business, because at the end of the day it is a business. If someone wants to be successful as a chef, they have to take the time to understand that some of the failures come from someone becoming a pretty decent cook, but not understanding the financial makeup of a kitchen — the food costs, the labor costs.”

"In this day and age, understanding marketing is a huge thing. If you can't market yourself, you're dead, especially in New York City. My hat's off to anybody who's successful in this business, because it's not easy, and the margins are very small. There are really no shortcuts to being a good cook. You have to cook a piece of fish a thousand times before you get it. You really have to put in the time." – first published in New York Daily News

Charlie Palmer, Chef/owner, Aureole, East Side


“Go into every situation with your eyes wide open, stay humble, work hard, never stop learning” (Click to Tweet)

“Stay sharp, have a positive attitude, go into every situation with your eyes wide open, stay humble, work hard, never stop learning and never give up. Not every day will be a great day but you can pretty much be sure that it will be different than yesterday. Enjoy the good and the bad and embrace it as learning and an opportunity to grow.” – first published in Canadian Restaurant & Foodservice News Magazine March/April 2014

Judson W. Simpson, Canada’s First and Only Certified Master Chef


We’d love to hear if you have any advice for new culinary graduates. Tweet us on Twitter or Follow us on Facebook and share the advice you have!

How to assemble a Banquet Chair Dolly

When you receive your NES banquet chair dolly you will notice that there is minor assembly required (though it is less involved than the previously provided instructions for the NES Folding Chair Cart that we previously provided assembly instructions for). Below is a full run down of the pieces you should receive in your package as well as assembly instructions and tools that are required.

Banquet Chair Dolly

What you should receive:

  • (2x) Pneumatic (airless) or solid wheels (depending on your purchase selection)
  • (1x) Axle
  • (2x) Washers
  • (2x) Cotter Pins
  • (1x) Hand Truck Frame

Tools Required (not included):

  • Pliers
  • Rubber Mallet

Step 1:

Check to make sure you have all of your parts. The axle is typically taped to the hand truck frame with the cotter pins and washers on it.

Banquet Chair Dolly Parts

Step 2:

Take 1 cotter pin out and take both washers off of axle.

Axle, Washers, and Cotter Pin

Step 3:

Put wheel on axle with the outside of the wheel against the cotter pin.

Wheel and Cotter Pin

Step 4:

Place one washer on axle after the wheel. *Note: not all carts will require both or any washers; the washers simply fill the extra space to prevent the wheels from traveling too much on the axle. The banquet chair cart will still work effectively without them.*

Wheel and Washer

Step 5:

Put axle on cart, hammer into place with a rubber mallet if required

Hammering Axle In Axle in Place

Step 6:

Place second washer onto axle. Again the washer may not be required.

Washer on Axle

Step 7:

Put second wheel onto the axle.

Second Wheel

Step 8:

Put cotter pin back into place, bend one end to hold in place. Second Wheel with Cotter Pin

Well done! Your cart is now complete! Enjoy the fruits of your labour by quickly and easily moving your banquet chairs.

Assembled Banquet Chair Cart

If you’re interested in receiving a quote for a banquet chair cart with shipping to the location of your choice:

How much does an Old Fashioned Glass Cost in Canada?

Old Fashioned GlassOld Fashioned Glasses are one of the most used glasses in a bar or restaurant because of their versatility. While traditionally, an old fashioned glass is used to serve certain cocktails such as the Old Fashioned, because of the shape of glass it can also be used by bars or restaurants as a Scotch glass for Scotch on the rocks (or neat), other alcoholic beverages such as Rum and Coke, water glasses, and more.

With Restaurants Canada stating the average foodservice operator's pre-tax profit is just 4.2% of the entire operating ratio¹, finding glassware that not only allows operator's to utilize the same glass in different ways, but also doesn't break the budget can be a problem. We’ve looked at numerous different sources of old fashioned glasses both in crystal and glass in Canada to help you determine how much they cost so you can price your drinks accordingly.

Old Fashioned Glass Price:

The first thing you need to determine is whether you want to go with a old fashioned glass made of glass or crystal old fashioned glass. Old fashioned glasses made of glass that are approximately 10oz range in price from $2.50 - $9.99 per glass. This price range is dependent on whether they’re purchased from at wholesale or retail prices, whether they are manufactured from a brand-name and the location they are manufactured. Crystal old fashioned glasses that are approximately 10oz range in cost from $3.15 - $9.99 per glass (for a similar straight style tumbler). This price range is again dependent on wholesale or retail prices, where they are manufactured and whether a brand name manufactured them.

Shipping Costs:

With an increasingly online world, there are times when you either don’t have the time or physically can’t pick up old fashioned glasses in store resulting in free shipping. If a store pick up isn’t an option, shipping costs would range based on the quantity of glasses you are ordering. Because glass and crystal are primarily air, shipping costs are charged on the dimensions of the shipment instead of the weight. For example, 10 dozen glasses across country from our warehouse in Mississauga, ON to Vancouver, BC you’d be looking at 0.50c per glass in shipping charges.

Hopefully this blog post gives you a range required to start planning your bar menu along with what budget you can allocate to tabletop supplies.

We supply tabletop supplies including crystal and glassware to party rental companies and restaurants across Canada. If you’re interested in a quote for Old Fashioned Glasses including shipping to your location:

1. Restaurants Canada 2014 Foodservice Operators Survey

How to Determine a Good Quality Bistro Chair

When exhibiting at the Quebexpo in March we had the chance to experience a new way to test the quality of bistro chairs. From our previous post on how strong bistro chairs are, we know that they're pretty tough chairs – our strongest we've tested to date in fact. But just because they're capable of holding a lot of weight doesn’t necessarily mean the backs won't break if customers lean back on them (and let's be honest – a lot of people lean back on chairs). One of the Quebexpo attendees showed us a great way of telling if the chair backs on a bistro chair are strong yet flexible enough to deal with a customer’s weight and adjustments as they eat or attend an event. He asked if he could see one of our NES Reliable Bistro Chairs and proceeded to do what Jonathan does in the video:


We found out after from the attendee that in cases where the plastic is too brittle (i.e. doesn’t allow flexibility for the chair to move and bend with a customer) if you attempt to bend the chair back backwards it snaps clean in two – signalling a poor quality bistro chair that won’t hold up to the rigors of the rental world.

We hope this post helped you learn a little more about bistro chairs. If you’re interested in seeing our collection of event chairs and banquet tables, download our Tables & Chairs Catalogue.