Prior to the Pandemic, many equipment and supply dealers have shifted the focus of their operations to e-commerce. The pressure of Covid-19 then led many traditional equipment and supply dealers down the path of consolidating operations with the furloughing of many sales and design associates.
For Culinary Depot the strategy has in fact been very different. The Spring Valley, NY based dealer has opted to grow and expand in these most challenging of times. The centerpieces of that strategy are the opening of a spectacular new showroom facility and a state-of-the-art test kitchen.
“It has always been my vision with Culinary Depot to give customers the ability to try equipment,” said Sholem Potash, president and founder. “Our new test kitchen allows our customers to see how different types of ovens, fryers, and more work. We also have the ability to bring in new equipment as necessary, so they can buy what is right for them. As a former executive chef, I know this is vital to a business. On top of that, we’ve built an inventory that simply can’t be matched!”
That type of approach has enabled Culinary Depot to grow to the 23rd largest dealer in the country. From humble beginnings in Rockland County, the company now boasts six offices Coast to Coast including California, Nevada, Florida, South Carolina, New York, and New Jersey.
“We don’t see this as a commodity business. Our mantra is the right equipment is everything,” noted Michael Lichter, CEO. “We know that if our people can have superior product knowledge, it gives us a big advantage.”
In order to make certain that their customers are being provided with the correct equipment, Culinary Depot’s management knows that the ongoing focus must be on staff training.
“We are also continually focused on cultivating our team’s passion and care as they build those crucial relationships with our customers,” the veteran equipment and supply executive added. “Our training includes building that consistent attention to the customer whether you are visiting our new showroom or connecting with us on the phone. We certainly understand the power and believe that e-commerce has a place. But it simply doesn’t deal with the priorities of a restaurant or hospitality customer. We look at the overall value of Culinary Depot as being driven by a formula of selecting the right piece of equipment, installing it to meet your deadlines and then being there after the sale to coordinate service.”
Culinary Depot’s approach to the design of its new home and showroom, reflects many of the changes in the industry. Their attention to its customers special needs have made the company the equipment and supply choice of a number of major dealers across the country. From the TWA Hotel project at JFK to major projects across the restaurant and B&I segments of foodservice consultants and end user operators are looking to Culinary Depot to provide the right equipment and installation expertise.
Although trade shows have been on pause in 2020, it hasn’t kept the Culinary Depot staff from shopping the world ins search of the latest equipment and supply innovation. From NAFEM to NRA and every local show in between, Culinary Depot has garnered a reputation for bringing among the nation’s largest contingents to show floors in search of the latest
solution for the customer.
“Our goal as we shop the world is to find equipment that can maximize our client’s kitchen’s productivity and efficiency,” Lichter concluded.
With the move to its new Spring Valley, NY home, the award-winning dealer is committed to continuing to set the pace for service while providing the highest quality equipment and design. Culinary Depot looks forward to collaborating with the foodservice community to design and equip kitchens that will create unique dining experiences.
To learn more, call Culinary Depot today at 888.845.8200 or visit their website.