Friday, August 9, 2013

Ancillary sections of F&B Departments

Ancillary Departments
These are service areas usually acting as the link between the kitchen and the food service areas. They are always behind the scenes or “back-of-the-house” the service themselves are some of the busiest unit of a catering establishments, especially over a service period.
Because of this it is important that, department heads ensure that all staff know exactly what their duties are and how to carry them out efficiently and quickly.
In general, especially in large operations from main service areas can be distinguished

1)     Still room
2)     Pantry
3)     Food Pick up Area/ Hot Plate
4)     Linen Room
5)     Store
6)     Wash up/ Kitchen Stewarding
7)     Silver room / plate room

This is a service area whose main function is to provide items of food & beverages required for the service of meal and not catered for by other major departments in a hotel such as the kitchen, larder and bakery.

Depending on its size and the duties to be performed the staffing will be made. Normally the still room is looked after by a still room supervisor. He/she is responsible for staffing, ordering of supplies and effective control of these items when issued to various departments.

Following are some of the items that are dispense from the still room.

a.      All beverages such as coffee, tea, Hot chocolate etc
b.      Assorted fruit juices both fresh & canned
c.      Milk and cream
d.      Sugars {different types like granulated, cube, brown sugar (demerara)}
e.      Preserves: Jam, marmalade, honey etc (They are normally pre-portioned for better control.)
f.       Butter – it can curled or pre-wrapped portions
g.      Toasted bread Slices, Melba Toast
h.      Breakfast rolls such as Brioche, croissants etc
i.        Assorted breakfast cereals- Cornflakes, Rice crispies, Muesli (mixed of all cereals)etc
j.        Pastries, Gateaux and sandwiches
k.      Porridge and boiled eggs.
From the above list, one can easily understand that all the items required are dispense from Still room
Some of the equipments which are required by the still room

        i.           Refrigerator
     ii.           Tea and coffee dispenser.
   iii.           Salamanders or toasters
   iv.           Bread slicing machines
      v.           Working table tops and cutting boards
   vi.           Large double sink
 vii.           Storage cupboard-for all dry items held in stock such as paper napkins, doilies etc.
viii.           Storage space or shelves- for storing crockery, glassware and cutlery.

2. Pantry

It is used to indicate all back area collectively. Still rooms, Pantry, washup area, store are all collectively referred to as a pantry in a commercial operations but pantry specifically refers to that area where mise-en-place (preparation for service) is carried out. It is the most important area and should be given considerable importance in planning stage.

Different activities are carried out in this area such as:

            i.      Wiping of al cutlery, crockery and glassware.
          ii.      Refilling of cruet set, sauce bottle and sugar bowl
        iii.      Storing out dirty and fresh linen.
        iv.      Storage of stationery
           v.      Sometimes briefing is also done in the pantry
        vi.      Ice cube machine is placed in this area.
      vii.      If there is no plate room, cleaning of silverware also takes place in this area.

3. Food Pick up Area/ Hot Plate

This area is also known as Hot Plate Area. The hot plate may be regarded as the meeting point between the food service staff (F&B) and the food preparation staff (kitchen).

This is a place where all the crockery required for service will be kept warm. Care should be taken to make sure that the amounts of chinaware required are properly stacked in the hot case. In some hotels the silver required will be placed on top of the hotplate and used as required.

Normally an ‘ABOYEUR’ (a barker) is in-charge and controls the hotplate over the service periods. The hotplate is usually gas or electricity operated and should be lit well in advance of the service to ensure all the china and silver are sufficiently heated. Once a dish is ready to serve the Aboyeur will announce it loudly so that the respective waiter can pick it up. Once the food has been picked up the KOT (kitchen order ticket) is put into a control box which can be operated only by a member of the control department who for control purposes makes the copy of the food check from the kitchen.

4. Linen Room

Linen storage is necessary in the F&B Department. All linen such as Serviettes, Table cloths, Slip cloths etc are stored in the F&B department as it is very difficult for the service staff to run to the house keeping department each time to get fresh linen and smooth operation is hampered.

Linen is exchanged everyday by the waiter in the Linen room (house keeping department) on a ‘one for one basis’ which means one dirty linen is exchanged for one clean linen. These are entered in the Linen register and if there is any discrepancy it is also entered in the register..
5. Store

The store acts as a area for keeping any supplies that are used during operations. These may include any condiments, soft drinks, juices, disposable items and guest takeaways (such as sugar sachets). There should be adequate supply of the items required during the service and proper requisition of the item should take place, so that there is no short fall.

6. Kitchen Stewarding / wash up Area

This is the most important Ancillary area which influences the functioning of the outlet. The department which is responsible for the supply and maintenance of all F&B equipments (cutlery, crockery and glassware) and kitchen utensils is known as Kitchen stewarding Department. Kitchen stewarding is the backbone of the F&B department.

In Kitchen Stewarding department, the wash up area occupies the maximum area and is fitted with different equipments. The wash up area is further divided into two:

a) Pot wash: This area is also known as “Scullery”. It is a place for cleaning kitchen pots, pans and other kitchen utensils. It is usually located near the main kitchen.
b) Ware wash / dish washing area: This section is responsible for cleaning off all types of service equipments. It is generally located near the restaurant and room service elevator to minimize the distance of carrying soiled equipment by the waiter. In dish washing area, all cutlery, crockery and glassware are kept separately (to avoid any breakage) and all food debris is put into wet garbage bin and all dry garbage like paper doilies, paper napkin in a separate garbage bin known as dry garbage bin.
When washing the crockery and cutleries one must make sure that the temperature of the water being used is around 75oC. This is done for two reasons:-
1) To sterilize the plate and remove oil stains
2) The china ware or crockery will dry by itself (because of high temperature) without using a wiping cloth therefore being more hygienic
1) Manual or tank method: - This method is used in smaller hotels where the turnover of the crockery’s and cutleries is not very high. In manual wash, two sink method or three sink method is used.
In the cleaning process, washing of equipment with hot water and detergent and rinsing takes place in first sink (in case of three sink method; washing and rinsing in separate sinks). These are then transferred to another sink for sanitization. This method tends to have higher breakages.
2) Automatic conveyor method or Dish washing Machine: - This is used in hotels where turnover is very high. To operate the machine continuous supply of water is required.
In the cleaning process, Plates are arranged on the racks and are rinsed before placing them on the conveyor belt, where it enters the machine. The machine comprises of three chambers. In 1st chamber, the equipments come in contact with water at high pressure from top as well as bottom. In 2nd chamber, the equipments come in contact with a spray of mixture of soap and water at 85oC from above and below and in 3rd chamber the equipments are sprayed with hot water at 90-95oC from top and bottom and sterilization takes place. The cleaning cycle is completed in 21/2 to 3 Minutes.

7. Plate Room/Silver Room
The silver room holds the complete stock of silver and other equipments required for service of all meals along with slight surplus stock for emergency. The various types of silver are kept here on labeled shelves, with all the service plates of one size stacked together. Heavier items should go on the shelves lower down and lighter items higher up. Cutlery, flatware, hollowware and other smaller items are usually stored in drawers lined with baize, as this helps to reduce noise, slipping and scratching.

In very large establishments, the silver and the plate room may be two separate units, but in the majority of places they are combined and in some cases it is a part of wash-up area.

The service equipments in stores should be cleaned and polished periodically. There are many methods available for cleaning silverware:

a)     Burnishing method: It consists of revolving drum half filled with small ball bearings. The silver to be cleaning is placed in the drum, which is then half filed with water, detergent and is closed tightly and machine is switched on for 10 minutes. This method is not suitable for forks and knifes.

b)      Polivit Method: In this method, Polivit plate which is made up of Aluminum is placed in a container with washing soda and silverware is dipped in the container, with atleast one piece touching the plate. Piping hot water is poured to cover the silverware and chemical reaction cleans the utensils. This method is suitable for large pieces of silverware.

c)     Silver Dip Method: In this method, the silver to be cleaned is kept in a wire basket and is immersed in silver dip, which is a pink colour liquid. It is left in the solution for a very short period and is rinsed afterwards. This method is quick but may damage the silverware sue to chemical reaction.

d)     Plate Powder Method:  This method is ideal for the articles that cannot be cleaned by the above methods. In this method, plate powder (which is pink in colour) is mixed with spirit and is rubbed over the surface of the article. Once the paste is dry, it is rubbed with a clean cloth and is rinsed with hot water. This method demands more labour and time and is suitable for cruet, toast rack etc.

e)     Quick Dip Method: In this method, hot water, along with crushed aluminum foil, lemon juice and salt is placed in a container and stirred. Tarnished silver is dipped in this solution for 2-3 minutes. It is then removed and wiped properly.


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