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The Chester Hotel is a luxury hotel and restaurant on Aberdeen’s Queens Road. Recently refurbished, it sets a new standard in luxury for Aberdeen, with its newly extended premises boasting 54 luxurious bedrooms, including two suites, and a fine dining restaurant with both private dining areas and a function suite for up to 500 delegates.
The Hotel’s magnificent IX Restaurant, seating 90 diners, is led by Savoy-trained executive chef Kevin Dalgleish, and was included in the £5m hotel and bar refurbishment and overall hotel extension.
Motivation for investment:
This refurbishment led to the requirement of two separate tailored cooking environments within the Hotel, with one functioning as a ‘display kitchen’ while the other was to function as an ‘engine room’ – running behind the scenes. Grande Cuisine was involved in the project through CNG Foodservice Equipment, who designed the two kitchens, along with the front of house areas and bars.
With a requirement for excellent performance, beautiful craftsmanship and rugged resilience during the long services required of a professional hotel kitchen, Grande Cuisine’s bespoke Athanor range was the ideal choice for the restaurant’s display kitchen. The bar and banquet cooking areas were also powered by products from Grande Cuisine, through the reliable performance of their modular CAPIC brand.
Two kitchens where required to offer excellent performance with an acceptable carbon footprint. They needed to be easy to clean and maintain, with a separate need for an aesthetically pleasing cooking environment to function as a ‘front of house’ display kitchen.
For the feature ‘open kitchen’ the suite is an Athanor peninsular style unit measuring 2350mm long x 1150mm wide and includes within the top, 1x 1/1Gn multi-cooker / bain-marie / pasta cooker, 2x double Plaque Athanor plancha cook plates and 1x 4kW induction hob. Below the top is 1x 1/1Gn electric service oven and 1x set of hot holding drawers. The suite is the first in the UK being supplied with the new 3 phase induction generator developed by Adventys. In the main kitchen is an island modular cook suite, one side being for bulk production with the use of a CAPIC Celtic 800 Series range, with the opposite side utilising CAPIC Aven 700 Series equipment for the busy bar and room service operations. On the production kitchen side is a range of equipment comprising of gas burners, a gas solid top, ambient work tops, a gas boiling kettle, a bespoke ambient worktop to fit around the column and a gas bratt pan. Below the unit is an array of storage cupboards and one gas service oven. On the room service and bar side is a gas lava stone char grill, gas stainless steel griddle, gas open buners and gas solid top. These units are mounted on gas oven, open storage cupboard and bridging section to maximise storage capacity and provide easy access below and under the suite for ease of cleaning.
Benefits for the customer:
The Chester Hotel’s kitchens have been provided with a bespoke solution tailored to their needs – with a front of house ‘display’ kitchen to boost the ambience and aesthetics of their dining area, while their preparation and production kitchen can work unhindered behind the scenes. The performance of the supplied units is exceptional, with their specially designed layout boosting the ease with which they can be cleaned and maintained.
“It’s a wonderful piece of kit,” said executive chef Kevin Dalgleish of the front of house Athanor suite, “the flexibility of the suite is incredible. For instance we use the [Athanor] Plaque’s as both solid tops and direct cooking surfaces at different times in the day, and the induction at the service end of the suite gives me controlled cooking and holding during the service period.” Equally impressed with the CAPIC solution provided to the production kitchen, Dalgleish said “the build quality of the CAPIC product is great, this kitchen is designed to be on the on the go 12 hours per day.” Grande Cuisine responded to the client’s brief by offering a unique solution utilising all of the core brands they have on offer, supplying a powerful, ‘best-of-breed’ installation that serves to emphasise the variety and extreme performance made possible through Grande Cuisine’s Athanor, Adventys and CAPIC ranges.