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August 16, 2007 11:42 AM quote 
jproaster is offline jproaster
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 28
 Hood without ansul?
Hi all. I've gone a long time as a coffeehouse w/ minimal food offerings. Moved to new location a year ago and upped the food, but was quite simplistic- panini, frozen soups, but baked my own pastries (though most were frozen from food rep).

Anyhow, I've been able to bake my eggs and most other products that might normally require a hood. Recently I bought an inexpensive griddle and a single eye radiant heat range. I plan to saute veggies for vege panini and prepare eggs for breakfast sandwiches, not to mention also omelets with the new items.

So do I need a hood since I will not be frying meats? And if I need a hood, do I need an ansul system? Seems that the hood might be cost prohibitive. I have seating for 50 and would like to increase breakfast and lunch fare to go with my espresso bar.

Thanks in advance.

August 16, 2007 1:33 PM quote 
BurgerMan1 is offline BurgerMan1
Senior Member
Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: just outside of Charlotte NC
Posts: 2226
The person you need to ask is your local building code inspector and health inspector.

For you to use any type of equipment (some exceptions) in most states/counties it must be NSF compliant and meet building code standards.

Sounds like you may need a long-range plan.

"This business isn't about what the customer sees...It's about what the customer believes!"

August 16, 2007 4:22 PM quote 
Nentony is offline Nentony
Join Date: May 2006
Location: Satellite Beach, Fl
Posts: 41
Hi John,
I have a coffee shop as well, and have been traveling the same path. I'm in it now and can't make a lengthy post but will post again overnight or early A.M. But I'll say this, the local fire marshall has been a great help, and it's amazing what you can accomplish with a convection oven, a panini press, a microwave and a hot plate. Let's compare notes.

August 16, 2007 4:29 PM quote 
jproaster is offline jproaster
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 28
Thanks for the replies.

Oh, how I wished that I understood a long-term plan.

Look forward to some note comparisons Tony.

August 16, 2007 5:03 PM quote 
chefdave is offline chefdave
Senior Member
Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: Muskoka, Ontario
Posts: 318
 supresion system
until recently the resort that I worked at had no fire system, this was until one day the insurance underwriter decided that we needed to have an Ansul system. His justification was that the sauteeing produced airborne fat particles, that were in the long run flammable. The resort had run for 105 years without such system but the insurance company, not the fire marshall said to get one or there would be no coverage. Something you should check into.
good luck

"He who drinks beer sleeps well. He who sleeps well cannot sin. He who does not sin goes to heaven. Amen" ~ German Monk (name unknown)

August 16, 2007 9:05 PM quote 
kaffeenjunkie is offline kaffeenjunkie
Senior Member
Join Date: Feb 2002
Location: in the zoo
Posts: 1416
I ran 13 years with a 2 burner hot plate, a small electric pizza oven, a convection oven and a couple microwaves. No hood at all. We make our own bread and pastries from scratch, dressings, soups and most everything else that came out of the kitchen. Even did 35-40.00 a head four course dinners featuring things like rabbit, rack of lamb and squab. You would be surprised at what you can do with some creativity and a keen sense of timing.
Now that I have a "real" kitchen I wonder how I did it all those years.

One brekkie item that has done well for is a casserole with hash brown potatoes, sausage gravy,scallions, a touch of garlic pour egg custard over the top and bake.
We make them in a shirred egg dish and nuke to reheat with cheese on it and serve it up with some fresh biscuits.

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August 19, 2007 8:44 PM quote 
jproaster is offline jproaster
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 28
I'm in a similar situation as you used to be. Although I'm struggling to know how far to go with food (being a coffee roasting/espresso bar), I feel confident in our additions. Problem is that I'm not sure I'll go forward with new menu items if I need a hood. And I don't know about you all, but I don't even want to talk with the health inspector unless I absolutely need to.

Anyhow, if you don't mind, I'd like a few details about that recipe- sounds just like something that would set my breakfast apart from the usual here.

August 19, 2007 11:02 PM quote 
Steve A is offline Steve A
Senior Member
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: In, but not from, Northeastern NC
Posts: 4971
Sort of hijacking this here, but your comment about not wanting to talk to the health inspector is odd. He/she is really your friend - well, not drinking bud or anything, but someone who should be counted on as a resource as much as anyone in the biz.Over the years I've developed a very good professional relationship with every inspector to come through doors where I worked.

The more you work with them up front, the less hassles you have in return. It's a two way street: you offer respect, you gain respect.


Give 'em what they want. Just make it better than they expected. 

August 20, 2007 8:09 AM quote 
jproaster is offline jproaster
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 28
I'd agree that my comments seem odd. The last part of your note is certainly true as well.

August 20, 2007 8:51 AM quote 
Chefg is offline Chefg
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Minnesota
Posts: 278
In my experience, I have found out in Minnesota you need an ansul system or some kind of fire supression system when you have equipment with open flame. Also your hood system needs to draw so much air to be able to use certain open flame equipment. The Fire marshall is the one to speak with on that.
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