Restaurant review, evaluation and assessmentNo matter a restaurant’s size, location or style of cuisine, chefs will agree that an organized kitchen is equivalent to a successful kitchen. To start the new year on the right culinary foot, restaurant owners and managers are encouraged to assess both ‘front of house’ and ‘back of house’ activities for areas in need of improvement and opportunities for enhancement.

There are multiple checklists within the foodservice industry that ensure a high level of quality and production that should be reviewed and modified annually. Restaurant Resource Kitchen offers charts, checklists and other operational tools to aid in your end of year assessment of daily protocols. All Food Business is another excellent resource for useful forms and additional checklists.

To improve restaurant operations, it is highly recommended that your evaluation begin with the following four checklists:

#1 Kitchen Task List
These every day activity sheets outline the responsibilities and duties for each role within the back of house. Daily task lists for the kitchen offer important reminders tailored towards each position – Supervisors, Kitchen Prep, Pantry, Grill, etc.  

#2 Kitchen Station Task List
This list is to be reviewed daily for specific instructions on the setting up, breaking down and everyday operations that a particular station is responsible for. Whether to improve the efficiency for dishwashing, to expedite processes for salad making or to increase sanitation at the sauce station, yearly checklist assessments will continue to advance your kitchen operations.

#3 Host Station Checklist
As the main point of reference for your restaurant, the host or hostess provides patrons with assistance, answers and general information. To ensure the station is well stocked and organized, review and modify the checklist to suit your dining establishment’s needs such as:

  • Reservations – seating chart, staff schedule, telephone head set, reservation book
  • Tabletop Supplies – menus, wine list, crayons, extra utensils, bar rag for spills
  • To-Go Order Essentials – pens, order pads, paper napkins, extra condiments, bags

An insightful checklist is offered by The Professional Chef’s Resources via free download that is highly customizable to fit the needs of your foodservice establishment.

#4 Wait Station Checklist
Restaurant employees rely on designated stations for stocked essentials. Whether for condiments, water pitchers, take-out boxes or cleaning supplies, these specified locations assist staff members in running everyday operations smoothly and efficiently. A checklist will ensure critical items needed for service do not run out.