Food and beverages are served to guests in many ways in food service areas. Hotels refer to a mobile service table or trolley, from which a dish may be dressed, prepared, carved, and flambéed in the presence of guests near their table.
Service is implemented in fine dining restaurants where an à la carte menu is offered and the average spending power is higher. It is essentially the work of wait staff, who possesses a high level of culinary and service skills.
Service can be understood better by recalling on the spot cooking which is arranged during buffet service.
Egg, Paratha, and dosa counters are often set up with burners, necessary cooking and presentation equipment, ingredients, etc. with a breakfast buffet, and the dishes are cooked to the customer’s preference in their presence.
Types of Trolleys used in F&B Service
There are different types of trolleys used in restaurants practicing food and beverage service. The design, equipment required, and layout of the trolley depends on its function.
Various types of trolley in foodservice is available with different quality of structural material and design to suit the need and pocket of the proprietor.
These are the trolleys used in Food and Beverage Service:
1. Hors D’ Oeuvre Variés Trolley
It displays 10 to 12 varieties of appetizers. The containers holding appetizers are placed over ice.
The trolley is designed in such a way that it has provision for holding ice and containers. It has an adequate cold half plate, and the appropriate accompanying sauces. The plated food is served to the guest from his/her right-hand side.
2. Salad Trolley
It has half plates and bowls, underplates, containers with prepared ingredients, salad dressings, and seasonings that are required to prepare the salads.
Salad dressings may either be prepared on the trolley in the presence of guests or in the kitchen. Most restaurants make the dressings in the kitchen and the dressing of salads is carried out on the trolley in the restaurant.
3. Cheese Trolley
It has a variety of cheeses, a cheese board, and cheese knife for cutting the cheese, and appropriate accompaniments for cheese.
The surface of the trolley is normally in marble and has a translucent dome to cover the top.
Cheese selected by the guest is portioned and plated on the guéridon trolley, and then served to the guest from his/her right.
4. Liqueur Trolley
It has assorted glasses, measure, ice bucket, spirit and liqueur bottles, carafes, etc. It may also have cigars, a cigar cutter, and a lighter.
A restaurant normally has two to three types of trolleys, mainly preparation, flambeing, and liqueur trolleys.
6. Food preparation, Carving, and Flambé Trolley
These have a gas burner or flare lamp which is fixed on the trolley to the level of the top surface.
The carving trolley has a carving board that is placed over a chafing dish during carving to retain the heat of the meat.
A trolley may have a single or double burner. A double burner trolley is necessary when the partly finished food is to be held hot during the preparation. One burner is used for keeping the food hot while the other is used for cooking.
Guests at the counter feel satisfied as the dishes are cooked according to their choice. In the f&b service, a trolley or side table is set up near the guest’s table and the work is carried out exclusively for a party of guests seated at that table, and the dishes are chosen by guests from the à la carte menu.