In July, Pacinis installed its third Kiremko but instead of choosing a counter range as per the previous two, owner Paul Francetti decided that a wall range would better suit the growing business

Like many fish and chip shops, Pacinis had put off doing deliveries but when Scotland tightened its Covid rules in January, restricting service to the door, Paul felt his hand was forced.

Since then deliveries have taken off – the takeaway and 50 seater restaurant in East Kilbride, South Lanarkshire, generates 20% of its sales from deliveries, a majority of which has been new business. However, when restrictions were eased and customers were allowed back inside, Paul found the existing layout of the shop no longer lent itself to the new way of working.

The solution was to rethink the layout Paul had been used to for over 25 years and make way for a five pan Kiremko high efficiency wall range and a 6m stainless steel counter with two serving areas.

Paul adds: I was very apprehensive at first, moving the counter range to the wall range. I didn’t know how it would work or if it would be quick enough so definitely the closer it got to the range being installed, the more sleepless nights I was having. But its worked out really, really well.

“Theres no hold-up when serving takeaway customers and deliveries because staff have their own stations. Before, if we were serving a couple of deliveries and a customer walked in, we couldnt do both which meant we ran the risk of upsetting the walk-in customer. We just don’t have that problem anymore.”

As well as the five pans, Paul specified three hot boxes, a heated gantry for warming plates, built-in filtration and KFEs new Fry digital controllers.

The controllers are great,” explains Paul. Weve changed from free frying chips to basket frying so the chips are all on timers. If Im busy frying, one of the staff just lifts the chips because they know they are ready.

“Im using the timers a lot more than I thought I would for timing things like chicken, pies and haggis. It just means Im not having to keep an eye on clocks.”

An unexpected benefit of the controllers has been the impact on customer expectations, with Paul adding: The customer can actually see how long something is going to take to cook because they can see the screen too. If we tell them a piece of chicken is going to take five or ten minutes, they can see the progress of that order.”

As well as adapting to a new layout, Paul has seamlessly switched to basket frying after 26 years of free frying. He comments: The basket frying works really well because you can control the amount you are frying a lot more easily. And the power of the pans is fantastic, you can put a basket of chips in and a couple of minutes later put another basket next to it and it doesnt affect the chips that are already in.”

Pacini’s restaurant customers haven’t been forgotten about in all the changes. With the help of Paul’s wife, it now boasts a newly refurbished dining area complete with a plant-covered selfie wall that is proving a hit on social media.

The changes spell the start of a new era for Pacinis, with Paul adding: Business is still growing, especially deliveries, and even though its an avenue that I wasnt necessarily happy about having to go down, that’s the direction that the world is moving towards so you have got to embrace it and do your best. I feel that is what we have done, weve taken it on board, weve adapted and now were set up for the future.”

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