The crockery must blend with the rest of the items on the table and also with the general décor of the establishment
An establishment uses one design and pattern on crockery, but when an establishment has a number of different food service areas it is easier from the control point of view to have a different design in each service area.
While purchasing crockery the following points are to be considered:
- Every item of crockery should have a complete cover of glaze to ensure a reasonable length of life
- Crockery should have a rolled edge which will give added reinforcement at the edge. This if well-done means that the chipping will only occur on the under edge which is not visible to the guests. One word of caution here is that hygiene is most important- chipped crockery could harbor germs.
- The pattern should be under rather than on top of the glaze as the pattern on top of the glaze will wear out and discolor very quickly. Thus crockery with patterns under the glaze is more expensive but with longer life.
Crockery for the catering industry
- Bone china- this is very fine and hard crockery that is very expensive. Decoration/pattern is to be found under the glaze only
- Earthenware- it is the cheapest and least durable crockery. Often hotel earthenware is given a trading name by the manufacturer to indicate its strength.
Some examples of these are as follows:
VITRIFIED earthenware is recognized as the strongest.
3. Stoneware- it is non-porous and extremely durable with high thermal and shock resistance. The price is slightly higher than hotel earthenware due to the long-life guarantee.
4. Porcelain- this is of a completely different composition with a semi-translucent body, normally blue/grey, and is highly resistant to chipping.
Crockery should be stored on shelves in piles of approximately 2 dozens. They should be stored at a convenient height so that they can be placed and removed without the fear of accident. It possible china should be covered to prevent dust and germs setting on it.
Sizes Of Various Crockery
- Side/quarter plate- 6 inches in diameter
- Half plate- 8 inches in diameter
- Large plate- 10 inches in diameter
- Soup plate- 8 inches in diameter
- Cereal plate- 5 inches in diameter
TABLEWARE / CUTLERY
Tableware is a term recognized as embracing all items of flatware, cutlery, and hollowware. They may be analyzed as follows:
- Flatware- In the catering industry, it denotes all form of spoon and fork
- Cutlery- In refers to knives and other cutting implements
- Hollowware- it consists of any item made from silver, apart from flatware and cutlery. Example: teapots, sugar basins, creamers, etc.
When purchasing tableware it is important to consider the following points
- The type of menu and service offered
- The maximum and average sitting capacity
- The rush hour turn over
- The washing up facilities and their turnover
The tableware in the catering establishment is EPNS- Electro Plated Nickel Silver. It is an alloy of nickel and brass dipped in silver.
Ideally, flatware and cutlery should be stored in drawers lined with baize to prevent them from getting scratched. Hollowware should be stored on shelves that are labeled accordingly.
Glass contributes to the appearance of the table and the overall attraction of the room. There are many standard patterns available to the caterers. Most manufacturers now supply hotel glassware in standard size for convenience of ordering, availability, and quick delivery. Glasses are generally measured in terms of capacity by the ounce. The hotel glassware is generally plain though in certain specialty outlets coloured or cut glasswares may be used.
Sizes of various glassware:
Hi- ball- 10oz
Pony tumbler- 6 oz
Cocktail glass- 2oz
Brandy balloon- 12oz
Champagne saucer- 6oz
Beer mug- 12oz
White wine glass/ club goblet-4 oz
Red wine glass/ Paris goblet/ 6 oz
Liqueur glass- 1 oz
Roly poly- 9oz
Old fashioned – 9oz
Parfait glass- 4 oz
Note: Glasses are cleaned by dipping in a solution of hot water and vinegar and wiped with a wiping cloth.
Glassware is normally stored in a glass pantry and should be placed in single rows on paper-lined shelves, upside down to prevent dust from settling in them. An alternative to this is to have plastic coated wine racks made specifically for the purpose of stacking and storing glassware. Such racks are also a convenient method of transporting glassware from one point to another which prevents breakage. Tumblers should not be stacked inside one another as this may result in breakage.
CLEANING AND POLISHING EPNS ITEMS:
Apart from normal silver plate tarnishes, the speed of tarnishing varies according to the food in contact. Sulfide-containing food like egg, vinegar, etc. will form silver sulfide and thus changing the color from yellow to brown to blue-black.
- Burnishing Machine – the machine consists of a revolving drum half filled with highly polished ball bearings. The drum is lined with rubber to protect the silver during cleaning. The cleaning agent is detergent and hot water. It may be plumbed into the mains or remain portable with the water being poured by means of a hose from a tap. Depending on the size of the machine in use, it may be divided into various compartments to hold specific sizes of silver. It may be also possible to insert a rod through the center of the drum from one end to another. This rod is removable can is passed through the handles of the teapot, coffee pot, sugar basin, etc. As the machine is switched on the drum revolves and the mixture of soap and water acts as a lubricant between the silver and the ball bearings. Thus any tarnish is removed but the silver is unscratched. It is then rinsed, dried, and stacked.
- Plate powder- This is a pink powder that needs to be mixed with a little methylated spirit to obtain a smooth paste. Spirit is used to mix the powder so that it evaporates quickly leaving a layer of the paste on the silver. The smooth paste, once prepared, is rubbed onto the article being cleaned with a clean piece of cloth. The articles are then left until the paste has dried which is then rubbed off with a clean piece of cloth. It is advisable to rinse the articles in hot water and wipe them dry. This method is both- time-consuming and messy, but produces very good results.
- Polivit method- a polivit is a perforated aluminum sheet best used in enamel or galvanized iron bowl. The polivit is placed in the bowl along with some soda. The silver to be cleaned is then put into the bowl, ensuring that at least a piece of silver is in contact with the polivit. Sufficient boiling water is poured into the bowl to cover the silver. A chemical reaction takes place between the polivit, soda, boiling water, and silver which removes the tarnish. After 3-4 minutes, the silver should be removed and placed in another bowl of boiling water, rinsed, drained, and wiped with a tea cloth. Though it is a time-consuming method it produces good results.
- Silver dip- this is a pink coloured liquid that must be used in a plastic bowl. The silver to be cleaned is placed in a wire basket and dipped into the bowl containing the liquid. The silver should be left in the bowl for a shorter time period and then lifted out and drained. After draining it is placed in warm water, rinsed, and wiped with a tea cloth. It is an easier method and consumes less time but is harder on the silver than any other method due to the reaction between the silver and the liquid. Used widely in medium-sized hotels.