University of East London

University of East London Refectory, Docklands Campus, London

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Phil Potter, Catering Manager at the Docklands Campus of the University of East London, led the refitting of the refectory kitchen, which is experiencing an increasing load. Serving about 600 meals a day (7 days a week during summer school) the refectory is also looking at increasing function catering on the site. 

Phil was looking to improve his refrigeration set up, removing uprights that were discharging heat from the top mounted condensers and limiting available work surface in a kitchen, which like most others, is short of space. 

Phil was familiar with conventional undercounter units but was looking for something better. Having found Adande's refrigerated drawers on their website; he talked to Contract Catering Equipment as well as Adande and then decided to install their units. Contract Catering Equipment of Essex was awarded the project, which was completed during spring 2009. Ten Adande drawers were installed in total. All units can perform as fridges or freezers and four drawers have Adande blast chill functionality included.

Refrigeration Requirements

Phil saw the key requirements as being:

  • Optimum use of space in a way that increases productivity
  • More worktop area
  • Bringing fridges and freezers closer to cooking and preparation areas, thereby eliminating unnecessary staff movements in the kitchen
  • Fridge and freezer storage with tremendous flexibility
  • Introduction of blast chill capability
  • Removal of upright units generating heat from top mounted compressors
  • Exceptional temperature control
  • Lower energy consumption


Adande fridge or freezer units have replaced upright units and provided useful worktop area.

Flexibility is further increased by addition of blast chill functionality to the fridge/freezer drawers making optimum use of space.

Is it Working?

Phil and his team are very happy with the new kitchen layout, making the following observations about the refrigeration:

  • Temperature is held at the required level, thereby maintaining food quality with a high degree of certainty.
  • Adande Drawers positioned under the worktops and close to the cook-line (e.g. bratt pans, fryers and combi ovens) has increased the productivity of the team and cut the amount of walking required in the kitchen during service.
  • Access to food in the drawers is better for the team than with undercounter door units, where reaching in to access product stored in the back corners can be difficult.
  • The temperature flexibility of Adande Drawers - from fridge to freezer in 30 minutes - has been very helpful; in fact, the ability to switch the units to freezer mode saved a lot of food recently, when a large walk-in freezer (brought to site for a function) failed.
  • This flexibility is enhanced for those drawers fitted with blast chillers, because these units can still operate in fridge or freezer mode as well, resulting in a highly productive use of space.
  • Adande Drawer units emit little heat from the compressor discharge and are proving to be low energy users - an important factor for a university wanting to operate in a greener way.
  • Because the drawer bins can be removed, the Adande units are much easier to clean than any cabinet fridge or freezer, be it upright or under-counter.


Adande drawers have also been placed in the cook line beside fryers and close to the combi ovens.

The combination of: proximity to the cook line; worktop; ease of access and flexibility between fridge and freezer is unique.

“The basic principle behind the Adande units is easy to understand - when the drawer is opened the cold airs stays inside with the food. That explains the temperature stability and the low energy usage. Adande Drawers have delivered the flexibility and productivity improvements I was looking for and I would recommend them highly.” 

Philip Potter - Catering Manager University of East London - Docklands Campus

To find out how Adande can improve the performance of your kitchen or retail outlet phone us now on +44 (0) 844 376 0023.

Alternatively click here to order more information.