Looks matter on the back-bar

Design a key consideration when it comes to refrigeration


DESIGN is as much of a consideration as performance when it comes to choosing a back-bar fridge, equipment suppliers have told SLTN.

While energy efficiency and reliability are high on the agenda for operators purchasing refrigeration equipment, aesthetics have become increasingly important, it seems.
“Bar designers are increasingly looking for more style and versatility in refrigeration,” said Nicholas Williams of equipment supplier Precision. “It’s about keeping cold and looking cool.”
In fact, it seems back bar fridges now play such a key role in the look and feel of a bar that designers are factoring them in from the start.
“Back-bar equipment needs to look smart as well as being energy efficient and easy to use,” said John Lilly, managing director of True UK.
“Increasingly, back-bar design is integrated into the whole concept to present a seamless look throughout the entire operation, pleasing to the eye and user-friendly to both staff and customers.”
Looks aren’t everything, of course.
Diane Ho, brand manager at Lec Commercial, said factors such as durability and internal space should be front of mind when selecting a unit.
“Durability is one of the key features that buyers should look out for,” she said.
“Very often, the cheapest refrigeration appliances can be a false economy, as they don’t tend to last very long in high-use areas.
“Also, the largest possible internal storage space with plenty of shelves and shelf positions to utilise the space available is paramount, as is the availability of solid or glass door options. Fitted castors to help move the appliance for cleaning is important, as is the controller within the unit.”
The Catering Equipment Suppliers Association also advised operators against using domestic refrigerators as a way of saving money.
These units often need replacing far more often that commercial units, and therefore end up being far more expensive in the long run, according to the organisation.

Image: Back-bar refrigeration should be stylish and functional, according to manufacturer True.