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Thursday, May 04, 2006

Timely Portion Control

A packed pub in a historic Boston hotel serves lots of burgers, fries and draft beer. The food cost was significantly higher than their ideal calculation projected. With a very fast turnover and tight receiving controls in place, management reviewed portion control policies.

The burgers were easy to test since they used portion control patties. Both the buns and patties were counted daily. Since the counts were in line, we tested the french fries. Way off!

Plates left the kitchen with well portioned stacks of fries. In fact, the cooks weighed the fries before placing them on the plate. So where was the problem?

We checked the garbage and found loads of fries.

The busy lunch period the next day illustrated the problem. A complete bag of fries was placed in the basket and properly cooked. These fries were seasoned and the orders were filled. Then the cook moved the garbage pail beneath the leftover fries and swept them into the garbage.

A quick training session solved the problem.

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