How to Estimate Tableware Needs to Place Orders for Restaurants

Running out of anything in a restaurant, whether it is food, wine, or dinnerware, can cost the business money. When you are buying supplies for your restaurant, it’s important to have the right amount of flatware, dinnerware, and drinkware on hand to keep up with customer demand. Here is how to estimate the needs that you will have to keep from running out of supplies.

Dinnerware Estimates

When you need to place orders for dinnerware, start off with the estimate of two items per seat. That would be two salad plates, two pasta bowls, or two dinner plates. However, if there are pieces that will be needed for multiple menu items, such as bowls, you will need to increase the number of them per seat.

For instance, if you have four entrees that require dinner plates, then increase the estimate to four per seat. Even though dishes are being washed during dinner service, they need time to cool down before food is put on them because otherwise they could crack. Consider each menu item, estimate the dinnerware that is needed for it, and order accordingly.

It is important to stay away from having “just enough” dinnerware for service because the less it is used, the longer the inventory will last. By having a good supply of each type of plate or bowl on hand, your restaurant can save money on dinnerware and be prepared to serve an influx of customers.

Drinkware Estimates

The same type of estimating will apply when stocking drinkware for your business. You will want to have an adequate supply of glasses for the dinner service and for the bar. You should also consider the different types of drinkware that you’ll need, which may include:

  • Wine goblets
  • Beer glasses
  • Champagne flutes
  • Highball glasses
  • Water glasses
  • Martini glasses

Start out with an estimate of two to three glasses per seat but if you use some of them in multiple ways, you will need to increase the estimates accordingly. Before placing an order online with a company selling restaurant and catering supplies in the UK, make sure to train your staff in how to properly handle drinkware to preserve it.

Flatware Estimates

When estimating the amount of flatware that your restaurant needs, consider the:

  • Number of seats in the restaurant
  • Turnover rates
  • Specialty menu items
  • Washing capacity
  • Type of establishment
  • Backup inventory requirements

Proper washing techniques will also help to preserve flatware so that there is always enough of it on hand. Use high heat to wash it so less soap is needed, don’t over-soak it, and dry it standing up to prevent contamination.

Along with the immediate needs for each service, you will also need a backup supply of dinnerware, flatware, and drinkware on hand.

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