Client Case Study: Gandolfo’s Redesign

In April of 2014, Gandolfo’s and Zesco came together in a partnership to redesign their kitchens. The redesign was debuted when Gandolfo’s opened a new location in Zionsville/Whitestown, and we’re looking forward to the next new location in Carmel/Westfield opening on Monday, November 9.

“We are thrilled Zesco is our equipment, smallwares and furniture provider,” said Gandolfo’s Chief Operating Officer Jon Aiello. “Andy Helmbock has been an instrumental part of our rebranding and redesign. The level of service Andy and Zesco provides us is unmatched anywhere in the industry. He knows our menu, our operation and knows what we are thinking before we even know. This allows us to hedge a lot of our growing pains and keep moving forward.”

Based on their new menu we found efficiencies in their new prototype kitchen. Zesco supplied the kitchen layout and rough-in notes, furniture, kitchen equipment, ventilation, refrigeration and smallwares. We also brought the Gandolfo’s team into our test kitchen to demo different equipment so they felt comfortable with their decisions. Through the redesign process, we were able to help Gandolfo’s simplify and refocus their menu.

How do we do it when it comes to finding new efficiencies? First we start by asking a lot of questions to understand where the client has been in the past. In the case of Gandolfo’s, we took a look at their existing locations to get an idea of their current setup. What does the client like about their kitchens? What don’t they like and why? We go over details such as budget, menu, average ticket time, seating capacity, service style and more. Whether the business is fast casual, full service or cafeteria, we go through this process to find out exactly who our client is and what they will need to run efficiently.

While working with Gandolfo’s, one component of the project was helping rework their cook line. The old concept had a stand-alone convection oven, which forced them to pay more for a bigger hood. We used a Southbend TVGS/12SC-NGS Truevection Oven, which acts as an equipment stand for the griddle and range. This, in turn, saves three linear feet of hood run.

We also introduced Gandolfo’s to a finishing oven that is ventless (does not need to be located underneath a hood system), the Turbochef HHC2020 VNTLS unit. This switch helped them gain a lot of speed. Before, they were trying to finish their hot sandwiches on a griddle which took too long at certain locations where their customers were experiencing 9-12 minute ticket times. We were able to cut that time in half with this new finishing conveyor oven. Another way we helped save ticket times was switching from a countertop fryer to a floor model gas fryer, which can reach 350 degrees more quickly for French fry orders.

“We are excited about our future development and you have been a tremendous part of our rebranding, redesign and absorbing growing pains as we get this prototype ready to blast to the rest of the country,” said Aiello.

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