Hot and Cold Drop-In Food Wells For Optimal Freshness
Commercial drop-in food wells are designed to hold food at desired temperatures for longer periods, ensuring your guests are always treated to fresh and great-tasting meals at any time. While used primarily for non-packaged food, drop-in food wells can also hold pre-packaged products such as canned drinks.
The drop-in design allows them to fit into a perfectly sized hole on your countertop. The components are located beneath the well and are concealed when installed. Depending on the menu and the number of people you serve every single day, you can go for units with single or multiple compartments that fit standard sizes of food pans, and with the use of adapter plates, can also accommodate a wider range of pan sizes.
There are drop-in hot food wells and there are drop-in cold food wells. Both units are available in durable stainless steel construction and advanced features such as thermostatic controls for more precise temperature control. We have a great selection here on CKitchen that will surely meet your needs.
Drop-in food wells can be installed for self-service and will typically have the controls mounted on a separate location where they can only be accessed by your staff. The two components are connected via long conduits, giving you more control over the safety of your food. For full-service you, you can also place the control box at the same height as the countertop or underneath in a secure cabinet.
Some units use infinite controls that allow you to adjust temperatures in several preprogrammed levels such as "low" and "high". Thermostatic controls offer more precise temperature control because they allow you to change individual settings for each temperature. There are also digital controls, which offer even much higher precision so you can specify the temperature yourself and just check the temperature via the readout display.
A drop-in hot food well holds products at 150 degrees Fahrenheit and can accommodate steam table pans. These units enable you to keep cooked dishes hot and fresh for longer periods, making them ideal for use in restaurants, cafes, canteens, and many more. There are hot food wells specifically designed for soups, stews, and sauces as well as rethermalizing to help prepare chilled or frozen ingredients without having to thaw them out first. Depending on your current setup, drop-in hot food wells can be electric or gas-powered and can be used with or without water.
Cold food wells are available in ice-cooled and refrigerated configurations and are perfect for salad bars and establishments that sell or serve fruits, desserts, and pasta salads. Refrigerated units come with either a cold wall design that uses refrigerant lines for conductive cooling or a forced-air system that is powered by a refrigeration system that releases cold air through ducts and distributes it over the pans. A drop-in refrigerated base has an operating temperature range of 33 degrees to 40 degrees Fahrenheit.
There are also dual temperature drop-in food wells that are perfect for establishments that change their menu on a daily basis or don't have much counter space for their various offerings.
Wet vs Dry Drop-In Food Wells
A drop-in food well can be operated wet or dry. A wet unit needs water to function therefore will have plumbing and drainage requirements you need to take into account. There are food wells with an autofill design that automatically keeps the well filled with water so you won't have to. This will, of course, require a connection to an incoming water supply, which translates to more upfront costs that most may be inclined to pay due to the convenience and lesser risk of accidents, spills, and burns. A more economical option will require you to handle this process manually. A model with a drain makes the process of removing the water and cleaning the unit much easier, but plumbing is required for this as well.
Dry food wells are usually for hot food and operate waterless using radiant, conduction, induction, or convection heat. These units are easier to install because there is no need to install plumbing. Dry wells seem to have gained the reputation of drying out food and negatively affecting the quality. However, most units available in the market today have improved design that prevents this, increasing their versatility as a result.
CKitchen has a great selection of hot and cold drop-in food well units from top industry brands such as Hatco, Delfield, Wells, and APW Wyott. These units are guaranteed to be well-built and dependable.
We are home to some of the most comprehensive line food service equipment and restaurant supplies from some of the top manufacturers in the market today. If you need any assistance during your shopping, please call or email us so our team of foodservice equipment consultants can assist you promptly.