Bars and restaurants are key profit drivers because they often have the highest-margin items on their menu. Although they are inexpensive to make, many customers will pay $10-$15 for the experience. Good bar refrigeration is essential for operational success.
There are two main types of bar refrigeration:
Understanding the back bar refrigeration solutions available to you is key to maximizing your drink menu’s profits. For most units, you can choose from stainless steel exteriors or black vinyl-coated metal or black vinyl-coated metal. Black is a good choice for bars and restaurants that want a uniform look that blends well into the back bar area. Stainless steel offers a more modern, elegant, and sleek look to the service area.
- These are the key benefits of all types of bar refrigeration solutions. Back Bar Storage
- Draft Beer Dispensers
- Bottle Coolers
- Glass and Plate Chillers
- Wine Merchandisers
Back Bar Refrigerated Storage
A good back bar refrigerated storage solution will provide maximum performance even in the hottest and most humid environments. These can be used to store wine, beer, cocktail ingredients, garnishes, and other non-alcoholic items like milk, juice, and bottled water.
You’ll need to decide whether you want glass doors or solid doors. Glass door coolers allow your guests to see your selection and encourage impulse buying. They also make it easy for staff to spot low inventory and necessary restocking quickly. Solid doors back bar units are not as luxurious, but they can be used if guests don’t want to see the contents. Solid doors can hide clutter and under-stocked areas.
You can choose between sliding or swinging doors. Sliding doors are ideal for space-saving, as you don’t have to add space for the door opening. Swing doors are easy to access for loading or unloading. Many models lock at 90 degrees so that you can focus on quick restocks.
These units also have the option of having tops. Galvanized and stainless steel are the most popular top choices. Galvanized tops are usually cheaper and can be slipped under cabinets for a “built-in” look. Stainless steel tops can create additional space, which is great for bars where space constraints are already a problem.
Draft Beer Dispensers
The direct-draw dispensers are a great investment and provide a better tasting, fresher brew than the can or bottle counterparts. Many bars keep their most popular beers on the draft and stock up on a back-bar storage unit with additional options in a bottle or can form. If you buy by the keg, the cost of the unit will be less than if you purchase by the case. The profit potential is often greater than the initial investment.
The large upfront investment is not the only drawback. The unit also has lower energy efficiency. We recommend that you choose a unit with Energy Star certification. This will allow you to qualify for rebates and help you save money on your utility bills.
Draft beer dispensers store the kegs, equipment and other items below the work surface. These units are usually available with solid doors to conceal the kegs. You will need to know how many beers your system can handle and how much storage space you will need underneath to store the kegs. You can choose from stainless steel, black vinyl, or two or three doors. They also have draft towers and can hold up to four beers. You can also request custom units. One of our product specialists will be happy to help you find the right solution for you.