A compact prep counter specifically developed for casual dining chain Nando’s has now been rolled out for availability to the rest of the market by manufacturer Williams Refrigeration.
The Norfolk-based supplier created the £4,300 Onyx CPC2 for the high street chain to answer its specific prep requirements. It has proved so successful that Williams has decided to include it as part of its new range.
Combining a preparation work surface with top-mounted ingredients wells, under counter storage and Williams’ advanced refrigeration technology, the Onyx CPC2 delivers a prep solution that’s both practical and energy efficient, according to Williams.
While Nando’s is using the equipment for preparing its flagship peri-peri chicken dishes, the counter is ideal for a wide range of food prep including pizza, sandwiches, salads, tapas and desserts.
“We’ve focused R&D across our full range on what we call ‘refrigeration for the real world,'” explains Malcolm Harling, sales and marketing director at Williams. “That means developing products that are not only energy efficient, but also answer the precise needs of today’s foodservice operator. The Onyx CPC2 is a case in point – it uses less energy, it’s reliable, tough, good looking, easy to live and work with, and it’s perfect for the ‘squeezed’ kitchen.”
The Onyx CPC2 comprises a two-door, 355 litre storage counter with four GN 1/1 shelves. The top mounted wells can hold up to four 1/3 Gastronorm pans. The new unit measures just 955mm wide. The CPC2 joins the established Onyx range which features three-, four- and five-door models.
A critical aspect of prep stations with ingredients wells is maintaining the chill in the pans. Many models chill from below – but if the pans are open, warm air from the kitchen can compromise food safety. An alternative is to blow a curtain of cold air across the top of the pans, but in conventional designs this wastes energy.
However, in the Williams system the internal airflow plus the air curtain circulate cold air around the ingredients pan, ensuring absolute temperature control. The air is then drawn back into the refrigeration system, where it is recycled to save energy.
The tough construction features an easy to clean stainless steel interior and exterior and 75mm polyurethane foam insulation, which has excellent thermal efficiency, with zero ODP and low GWP. Williams’ CoolSmart controller adapts to changing conditions, such as quiet periods, to minimise energy use and maximise service life. The Onyx can be connected to a variety of temperature monitoring systems for HACCP compliance.
Practical features include self-closing doors, a night cover for ingredients wells, and barrel locks for security. Removable racking and shelving and a removable crumb tray make the Onyx easy to clean. Its high performance refrigeration system means it can operate safely in ambients as high as 43°C.