Which Commercial Dishwasher Is Right for My Restaurant?

Door Type Dishwasher

Door Type Dishwasher

Choosing the right commercial dishwasher for your restaurant could make a big difference in the efficiency of your kitchen.  If you get something too small that can’t keep up with your washing, you will quickly run out of dishes.  If you get something too large, you may take up valuable space in the line and be wasting energy and money.  Here are some suggestions to better answer the question: Which commercial dishwasher is right for my restaurant?

Under Counter Dishwashers

As the name suggests under counter dishwashers fit underneath a counter. They are small, low-setting dishwashers that are closely related to traditional home dishwashers. Under counter dishwashers are great for saving space, but they are not effective for large-volume needs.

  • Best Use: Bars, small nursing homes, daycares, churches, and community centers
  • Capacity: Up to 35 small dishwasher racks per hour

Door-Type Dishwashers

Door-type dishwashers are loaded from the front, and most of them have a side door to pass the racks through when they are finished. These are great space savers because they fit into the corner of most dishwashing areas, with dish tables on both sides for efficiency. They work well for small establishments that need more than an under counter dishwasher.

  • Best Use: Small restaurants, hospitals, nursing homes, and schools that serve up to 250 meals during breakfast, lunch, or dinner
  • Capacity: Up to 80 dish racks an hour

Conveyor Dishwashers

Conveyor dishwashers are some of the largest models in the industry. They work much like an assembly line, where dishes come in the front dirty and come out of the back clean. While there are differences in size based on capacity, most conveyor dishwashers are large and best suited for big kitchens.

  • Best Use: Hospitals, large restaurants, university dining halls, large cafeterias, and other establishments serving 250-1500 meals in peak hours
  • Capacity: Up to 400 dishwasher racks per hour

How to Pick the Best Commercial Dishwasher

Consider the size of your kitchen and the overall needs of your establishment. If you only serve 50 meals during your peak hours, you would have no reason to buy a conveyor dishwasher. If you need to wash dishes for a buffet-style restaurant, an under counter machine will not be enough for you. When you want the best fit for your commercial kitchen, you will find the best commercial dishwasher at Oswalt.  Come into our showroom or call to talk to our experts!

Choosing The Right Dinnerware For Your Menu

Some restaurant owners choose their dinnerware based on looks alone, but doing that could be detrimental to your establishment.  Select dishes that function well AND make your food look appetizing and pleasing.  This may be the most important decision you make for your restaurant.  Here are some tips for choosing the right dinnerware for your menu.


The size of your dinnerware will determine how big or small your food looks.  If you have a tiny plate for a large meal, the food will look overbearing.  If you have a large plate for a small meal, people may think your portions are off.  Perhaps the easiest way to determine the size of dishes you need is to prepare a menu item like usual and present it on a large, flat surface.  Measure how much space the food occupies and then find dinnerware the fits proportionally.


The shape of your dinnerware should reflect the overall theme of your restaurant.  Modern restaurants often use square and rectangular dinnerware because that looks updated and sleek. Traditional or “home-cooked” establishments may prefer round and oval dishes, much like what a person may use at home.

When deciding the shape of the dinnerware, also think about how you present your menu items. A pot pie for instance, would look better in a round dish because it is round on its own. You want the food to look like it belongs in the dish it is placed.


Most restaurants choose white dinnerware because it creates a crisp, clean presentation.  White is also easy to clean because it highlights any residue that may be left after washing.  If you want to have a pop of color in your dinnerware, you might reserve it for the glasses or saucers you put out on the table.  Everything else is often best left white.

Quick Tips

When you go to choose your dinnerware, keep the following in mind:

  • How sturdy should your dishes be?
  • What kind of people do you expect to eat at your restaurant?
  • Do you have specific meals that require specific types of dishes?
  • How will your dinnerware look when it is presented together?
  • How easy will it be to wash your dishes?

Oswalt has hundreds of plates, platters and bowls to choose from with many that can be shipped today!  When you consider your needs and presentation together, you will come up with the perfect dinnerware!

See What Our Customers Are Saying!

Customer reviews paint a clear picture of how well a business is doing. At Oswalt Restaurant Supply, we pride ourselves in having great reviews across the board. We have five star ratings on both Yelp.com and CustomerLobby.com. The only way to get such great feedback is to treat customers well from the start. Check out what others are saying about our sales and services so you can be confident when you work with us.

Customer Reviews

“We have been buying from Oswalt Restaurant Supply as long as we have been a business so about 18 years now. We don’t even shop our business. We tell them what we need and they get it for us. Their pricing is better than anyone in town.”
– David R. from Oklahoma City, OK

“I had a good experience with Oswalt Restaurant Supply. I ordered a few things from their website, which was very user friendly. I was able to search for my items easily. I didn’t need to contact anyone for troubleshooting or anything. Prices were good, and everything arrived on time.”
– Al P. from Maricopa, AZ

“I find Oswalt to be a company that appreciates their customers which is not all that common anymore.”
– Judy M. from Seattle, WA

“I have been a customer for the past three years. I have had excellent service from the sales staff and I find them to be very helpful and friendly.”
– Jennifer W. from Oklahoma City, OK

“Oswalt Restaurant Supply does a good job for us. They always get everything out to us promptly. Working with them is pleasant.”
– Jason I. from Panera Bread in Edmond, OK

Why Oswalt Restaurant Supply Is the Best

What makes Oswalt the best restaurant supply company Oklahoma has to offer? Our extensive experience and our true passion for our customers. We believe in the products that we sell and the businesses we work with. That is why our clients come back to us time and time again. We wouldn’t sell anything to our customers that we wouldn’t confidently use ourselves, which is why we have a satisfaction guarantee.

Whether you run a small restaurant or an international food chain, we want to work with you. Contact Oswalt Restaurant Supply today to learn how we can help you.

What to Look for in an Ice Machine

There is a huge assortment of restaurant ice machine on the market these days. Selecting the right one for your business is about more than just finding the one that fits the space. You have to consider your restaurant’s needs to determine which unit will work best. Here is a quick guide explaining what to look for in an ice machine.

Type of Ice

Ice can be made into several different shapes, so you need to get the machine that makes the shape you want. The two most common forms of ice are cube ice and flake ice, which are used in drinking glasses. Another less common form of ice is nugget ice, which is the kind you might find in bags at a gas station. Consider your desired shape of ice and get an ice maker that accommodates that.

Air Cooled vs. Water Cooled

Your ice maker will either be air cooled or water cool. Air cooled units take in air from their surroundings and use that to keep their temperatures low. Water cooled units pull water from a separate water line and use that to cool the interior. Air cooled units are usually cheaper than water cooled units, but they are also louder to operate. Water cooled units use less electricity than air cooled models, but they also use more water. You will need to weigh the pros and cons to determine what you need.

Daily Output

Make sure you buy an ice machine that can handle the workload you’re giving it. If you go through 300 pounds of ice a day, you won’t benefit from a device that produces 200 pounds maximum. Of course, larger output units are going to cost more, but at least they will get the job done. As with anything in the restaurant business, function trumps price every time.

Added Functions

Do you need your ice maker to act as a bin or dispenser? If so, you will need to factor that into your selection. You can easily get an ice machine that has a dispenser or bin built into it. You could also buy the bin separately and just place the machine on top. This is a good idea if you need your bin to be a specific width and height.

Consider all of your options before buying an ice machine, and you will get years of use out of your device.

Food Safety Best Practices with Cambro

By Lee Davis

I’d like to share a story with you about a friend we’ll call “Tom” who was recently hired as a prep cook-trainee at the local family restaurant in town. Early on during his time there, Tom was told to thaw six chickens. Tom went to the freezer, retrieved the frozen birds, placed them neatly on a sheet pan and left them on the prep counter. Later the chef walked by and explained to Tom that the birds needed to be thawed in the walk-in, not the prep area. So Tom took the tray into the walk-in and put it on the third shelf up.

CambroFPThawing frozen meat in a refrigerator is an important “best practice” for anyone, but especially foodservice operators. Frozen meat left out on a counter runs the risk of entering the “temperature danger zone,” a range between 41 ̊F to 135 ̊F (5 ̊C to 57 ̊C) where bacteria grow particularly well. But merely putting frozen meat in the refrigerator is not enough.

Two days later when Tom went to retrieve the chickens for butchering, he noticed debris from a produce box had fallen onto the chickens, and the chickens had been sitting in their own thawed juices for two days. When he moved the pan, the juices spilled down over several other containers of food that had to be discarded.

Colander KitWhat Tom needed was a Cambro Safe Thawing Kit, or at least that’s what Patricia Guerrero, Food Safety Expert for Cambro, calls it. She explains that a Safe Thawing Kit consists of a Cambro Camwear® Food Storage Box, a like-sized Cambro Camwear® Colander Pan and a Camwear® Sliding Lid™. Guerrero went on to explain just how simple the kit is to use. For Tom all he would have had to do is drop the colander in the food box, place the frozen meat into the colander, and cover it all with the sliding lid. Then place it on the bottom shelf of the walk-in. Thawing juices drain down through the colander and spills are virtually impossible, unless the food box is turned over or damaged. The meat doesn’t sit in its own juices and everything is safely covered and contained. The sliding top allows easy access without moving the box from the shelf.

Colander Kit ChefThis is really a new application for products operators may already have in their kitchen but have been using for other purposes. All the components are available from Cambro together or separately. They all come in 18″x26″ or 12″x18″ sizes and have many uses. For more on food safety best practices with Cambro, visit www.cambro.com.

Restaurant Equipment & Supply – Customer Ordering Trends

upArrow2Not all that long ago I was attending industry conventions focusing on how the internet could revolutionize the way restaurants placed their orders and how those orders were processed.  Clearly the internet has come a long way since then!  In some cases the restaurants have moved way faster than equipment & supply dealers, just the other day I ordered a pizza online and tracked it as it was being made, cooked, packaged, and delivered!

The fastest growing trend with our customers is to order on the internet.  The customer logs into their account, selects the products they need, we pull it, pack it, and ship it.  They are not ordering from some “random internet” company that they don’t know, but real people with real connections to their business.  This method  is a simple, yet invaluable tool to help expedite the process while reducing errors.

It’s always great when customers call in their orders and we get to chat about what’s new, of course we love it when someone stops by the store to pick something up…but no doubt about it….Internet ordering is the definitely the trend!

visit us at http://www.oswalt.biz to set up your account or call us at 800-299-4044


We value your feedback!  If you’re aware of anything we can do to provide better service or products email me at huff.harper@oswalt.biz

Choosing the best oven for your restaurant is crucial.

Choosing the best oven for your restaurant is crucial. Those of us here at Oswalt Restaurant Supply know that this is as true here in Oklahoma City as it is anywhere else. We hope this guide will help our local customers and those of you from afar, by giving you a quick glimpse of what options there are in the oven restaurant equipment industry.

Convection ovens

The first thing to understand about ovens is that most which are available at restaurant supply stores these days are convection style. These work by spinning the air around your food while it cooks. This helps to eliminate hot and cold spots, which allows your food to cook evenly. They are not the only choice, but for those with large baking and cooking needs they are highly recommended.

The size of your oven

Remember that bigger is not always better. This is especially true with standard ovens that develop hot and cold spots – larger ovens are more prone to this. Having to turn your food mid way through cooking to combat uneven temperatures is time consuming. Focus more on finding the right oven than the size. Being able to cook a large amount of food that burns in places will not help your restaurant.

Different oven elements

Ovens on the market today will have elements in 3 locations:

  • 1 on top for broiling
  • 1 on the bottom for baking
  • 1 on the back for convection

Looking at these three elements there are two different styles – exposed and recessed.

Exposed is the most common type. To tell if yours has this style simply open it up and look, if you can see them you know they are exposed. These are the easiest to replace, but can be difficult to clean.

Recessed elements are new on the market and are gaining popularity. They are hidden under a sheet of metal. This makes them very easy to clean, but difficult to replace and repair.

When choosing the best oven for your restaurant you should take the time to consider how messy your baking and cooking can be. A recessed element may be right for you if your food is prone to making a mess. If everything stays where it should, an easy to repair and replace exposed element will work for you.

Oven Controls

As with most things, ovens are going digital. It is even possible to find commercial grade ovens that have a USB port that allows you to insert a Flash drive. This expands your ability to do one touch cooking as the computer sets the temperature, a timer and controls the elements for baking, broiling or convection.

The other important feature of digital oven controls is accuracy. A knob may be off by as much as 50 degrees. Over time they can become even more out of line so that your oven is off by 100 degrees. Any baker will tell you the difference between 350 degrees and 450 degrees is almost fatal to your food.

Choosing the best oven

For further advice on choosing the best oven we invite you to come to our restaurant equipment store in Oklahoma City. If you’re a little further out, please contact us today by phone or email. We’ll be glad to talk to you about the particular needs of your restaurant so that you get the best oven for your application.


Get Ready for the Holidays – 8 Quart Stainless Steel Chafer!

I love the Holiday Season!  It’s wonderful spending time with the family, catching up, watching some sports (we love football and basketball), and eating some great food!  Every year we line up our Chafers full of ham, turkey, and all the fixings, ring the dinner bell and get out of the way!

Entertain Like A Pro!  Get a great deal while supplies last!






And don’t forget the Fuel!

A BIG WELCOME To All The GREAT Industry Professionals attending SEFA Academy in Oklahoma City!

Over the next few days a multitude of Foodservice Equipment & Supply Professionals will be in Oklahoma City attending SEFA Academy.  They will be participating in classes such as Foodservice Layout & Design, Dock to Dining, Blast Chilling Applications, and many more!  While in Oklahoma City the group will take a tour of some Carlisle Manufacturing plants and Oswalt Restaurant Supply, both located right here in Oklahoma City!

Be sure to give them an Oklahoma welcome if you happen to run into them!