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Latest News and Tips from HSG

Crafting Color Formulas and Perfecting Hues

Crafting color formulas and perfecting hues can be a difficult task! But in today’s installment of “Meet the Maker” from our factory partners – Old Dominion Furniture Company. we meet the person who does just that!

Linda has served as Old Dominion Furniture Company’s lead colorist since 2002! Nailing down the precise formula for matching stain and paint colors can be a tedious task! But Linda has it down to a science! During her 20 year tenure, she has formulated, mixed and perfected “recipes” for countless custom colors! Linda documents all of her recipes in countless handwritten books!

In 1990 Linda joined the Old Dominion crew as part of the Finishing Department. The finishing department is responsible for customizing the look of each chair frame and tabletop! From formulating custom paints and stains to applying color and sealer coats, the team ensures that each piece is flawless and ready for delivery! Linda’s task was to sand high chair frames, which is a critical step in the finishing process. After experiencing other roles in the finishing department, Linda moved to color mixing in 2002. And thanks to her perfectionist tendencies – her love-hate relationship with color is still going strong!

Linda enjoys being part of the Old Dominion team and takes great pride in her role in creating the beautiful pieces that customers have come to know Old Dominion Furniture Company for.

We continue to be amazed by her ability of crafting color formulas and perfecting hues with the same dedication and commitment as the day she started.

 

 

 

 

Meet the Makers: Covering Seating One Stitch at a Time

We are thrilled to bring you another installment of one of our favorite features from Old Dominion Furniture Co.: Meet the Makers!

Meet the Makers: RodneyToday, we are meeting Rodney, who heads up the Upholstery Department at Old Dominion Furniture Co.. To him, upholstery is an art form: “It is just like making a picture. You have to connect seams and patterns to create a flow between each part of the booth and all booths in a series. No two pieces are the same!”

And Rodney would know. He began working for Old Dominion Furniture Co. seven years ago as a laborer and now leads the team that installs fabric, vinyl and leather on all seating. Though his background was in the wood industry, upholstery has become his passion. He calls himself a “dedicated perfectionist” and loves structure, so his job overseeing all upholstery department details suits him well.

The close-knit relationship among the department are an added bonus.

“It feels like family here,” Rodney says. “We work as a team, and every day is an opportunity for us to learn something new.”

 

So what does the upholstery team do? The upholstery team at Old Dominion Furniture is hands-on and responsible for figuring out yardage, fabricating custom patterns, building the underlying structure of all seats and backs, as well as meticulously sewing each covering. Additionally, they expertly craft and apply finishing details like upholstered buttons, welt cord and nailhead trim. Rodney in action

Finally, they ensure that each piece is steamed, wrinkle-free and looking flawless before leaving the floor!

For us it is so wonderful to learn more about who is behind the beautiful furniture from Old Dominion Furniture Co., so stay tuned as we share more “Meet the Makers” in the future.

 

 

Serving Coffee and Breakfast During COVID-19

Serving coffee and breakfast during COVID-19Great coffee and a satisfying breakfast are among the most cherished amenities hotels offer. Serving coffee and breakfast during COVID-19 may look different now that many hotel operators have been forced to rethink the way they serve guests?

But, there is one thing that hoteliers agree on: Coffee and breakfast must stay. We just have to find a way to serve them differently now. In the article below originally published by our factory partners, Hamilton Beach Commercial, we’ll take a closer look at how hotels are adapting to this new reality.

Low-Touch In-Room Coffee Solutions 

In this new era for hospitality, the guestroom is a sanitized sanctuary. Hotel chains are instituting new ways to reassure guests that every frequently touched surface has been cleaned and is safe to touch. But what about making coffee?

There’s no way to make in-room coffee without touching something. But Hamilton Beach Commercial have designed the pod coffeemakers for guestrooms to minimize touch and maximize flavor. The secret is the recyclable brew basket that holds soft pods, both of which come individually wrapped. A guest would only need to touch the coffeemaker twice – once to add fresh water, and once to press the brew button.

Best of all, our pod coffeemakers brew outstanding in-room coffee. We designed the brew basket/pod holder to maximize coffee extraction, resulting in a stronger brew, even when using less coffee. (Here’s the science.) It’s also reusable and recyclable, pleasing green-minded guests.

 

Low-Touch Hotel Breakfast Strategies 

Some guest are accustomed to enjoying a hearty morning meal, so we can’t take that away from them. “They still want their breakfast, and you’ve got to be able to provide the breakfast,” Anthony Melchiorri, a hospitality consultant and host of “Hotel Impossible” on the Travel Channel, told The Washington Post.

But take heart: You don’t have to figure it out all at once. Many hotel chains are offering grab-and-go options temporarily while they devise safer ways to serve full breakfasts. Possibilities include extending breakfast hours, staggering seatings and requiring reservations. Some brands are offering loyalty members extra points in lieu of breakfast, or credits to use at an on-site restaurant.

Hotels that have kept a buffet setup seem to be limiting the selection to packaged items and fruit: oranges, bananas, instant oatmeal, baked goods, etc., observes One Mile at a Time. Self-serve coffee and juice remain.

What of iconic offerings like the make-your-own waffles at Hampton Inn? The brand is “exploring ways to gradually bring back the made-to-order breakfast, although it may be with an attendant versus DIY, to make sure we can maintain consistent standards of cleanliness,” said Phil Cordell, parent company Hilton’s global head of new brand development.

What to do now?

Now is the time for you to take stock of your foodservice equipment and determine, how you can use it in a safe an effective manner to serve breakfast. Key pieces include:

  • No-touch coffee urns: All of Hamilton Beach Commercial’s coffee urns feature touchless dispensing. A guest or server only has to press a cup against the dispenser. These urns are easy to sanitize, inside and out, and both the stainless steel and aluminum finishes present a polished appearance.
  • Commercial rice cookers: Available in three sizes, our commercial rice cookers cook staples like oatmeal, grits and porridge to perfection. Food can be held at the correct temperature for up to four hours.
  • Chamber vacuum sealers and immersion circulators: Sous vide cooking isn’t just for catering and fine dining. It’s the perfect way to prepare French toast, scrambled eggs, poached eggs, cured salmon and even bacon (really!). This style of preparation is well suited to room service and long serving windows, because food can be held at a safe, serving-ready temperature for several hours. Learn more about the PrimaVacTM line of vacuum sealers and the AcuVideTM 1000 Immersion Circulator.

 

Take heart: Hoteliers worldwide are facing the same challenges right now. We’re all in this together! Equipment Solutions and Hamilton Beach Commercial will continue supporting you with tips and strategies for surviving and thriving.

Eight Frozen Cocktails for the Winter Months

Does your bar blender gather dust from November through April, only to roar back to life when it’s margarita season? This winter, put the blender back to work by mixing some frozen cocktails that will invigorate your cocktail program. Frozen Cocktails for the Winter Months may sound like an oxymoron. BUT! There is a secret to selling frozen drinks in winter. And it is simple – you just need to channel your customers’ seasonal moods. In the article below originally posted by our factory partners Hamilton Beach Commercial, we will tell you how.

Frozen Cocktails for the Winter Months

But first, remember the basics of successful drink blending: Always put liquid ingredients in the jar first. Follow by adding solid ingredients such as fruit and ice. And for a consistent blend every time, invest in a powerful, commercial-quality bar blender.

Festive frozen cocktails for December

In December, everyone’s in the holiday mood. Flavors of the season include peppermint, chocolate, orange, cinnamon, allspice, nutmeg and ginger. And while most people associates the holiday month with warm drinks: hot toddies, hot buttered rum and hot chocolate, novelty always sells — so why not put an icy spin on traditional flavors?

  • Frozen Hot Chocolate Martini – This recipe from Sandra Lee, made with hot cocoa mix and vanilla vodka, is as simple as it gets — and will warm chocolate lovers’  hearts.
  • Frozen Dark and Stormy – This frozen cocktail from Delish is like Christmas in July: the gingery bite is appealing in winter, while the rum and lime evoke the tropics.
Virtuous frozen cocktails for January

In January, we’re all nursing an overindulgence hangover. No more chocolate. No more eggnog. And for the love of butter, no more cookies. At the same time, we’re not ready to trade our cocktails for swiss-chard smoothies just yet. Offer a frozen-cocktail menu that speaks to guests’ desire to cleanse their palates and start fresh. Or, since it’s Drynuary for some, why not serve refreshing mocktails?

  • Frozen Gin and Tonic – Did you know that the gin and tonic was originally devised as a cure for malaria? Tonic water was invented to make bitter quinine powder, a malaria remedy, palatable to British colonists. They soon realized it was easier to drink if they added a healthy dose of gin. This medicinal drink is even better as a frozen winter cocktail. This recipe from Serious Eats is mixed in advance, speeding bar service.
  • Frozen Cranberry Margarito – The happy child of a mojito and a margarita, this winter cocktail from Southern Living refreshes with tart cranberry, lime and a salt-sugar rim.
Tropical frozen cocktails for February

In February, we’re all feeling envious. Everyone is Instagramming their sunny getaways to Cabo or Cancun (or at least, that’s how it’s been in years past! Here’s hoping for travel to become the norm again – really soon!!!) Since we can’t get away due to the current world situation, we can at least enjoy a little taste of the tropics!

  • Winter Margarita – We love this recipe from bartender Tristan Willey, which includes an egg white, reposado tequila and mezcal: “It gives you those summer flavors,” he says, “but with the thickness of the body and the smoke of the mezcal.” Willey says to shake with ice, but we suggest blending for a frozen treat.
  • Kahlua Colada – This frozen cocktail recipe, originally from Bartender Magazine, has been a runaway hit on Hamilton Beach Commercial’s blog for two years running. The combination of rich Kahlua with coconut and pineapple is unusual, but it works.
Irish frozen cocktails for March

With spring right around the corner, your guests are feeling optimistic. And Irish. Very Irish. But blended cocktails don’t need to be green to be perfect for the season.

  • Frozen Irish Coffee – The French Quarter bar Erin Rose lays claim to inventing this delectable frozen drink, although the owners won’t divulge the recipe. Bar manager Rhiannon Enlil tells Imbibe magazine it’s made with local dairy, local coffee, brandy and coffee liqueur, then sprinkled with coffee grounds. This version, made with whiskey, hails from the Hinky Dinks bar in Sydney.
  • Spiced Clover Shake – This blended combination of beer and chocolate ice cream is unconventional, but delicious. The recipe, originally from Monin, calls for amber beer, but we think Guinness or another Irish stout would work beautifully.

And voila — it’s spring again. Time to start blending margaritas…

 

Original post: So Cold They’re Hot: Eight Frozen Cocktails for the Winter Months