a kitchen with a refrigerator and sink
Martina Vilar
Martina Vilar
Editor in Chief

How to Compare Restaurant Refrigerators

An essential part of running a successful restaurant is having the right commercial equipment. Refrigerators and freezers range in size and functionality, but all serve to keep perishable food safe from foodborne illnesses.

Choosing the right refrigeration system for your kitchen ensures you run a smooth kitchen and deliver a positive customer and employee experience. A commercial refrigerator increases the efficiency of your kitchen and improves the quality of your food. It’s unlikely you’ll go through your entire food stock at once, which is why you need a commercial refrigerator freezer to store food overnight.

How to Buy Restaurant Refrigeration


Choosing the right commercial refrigerator and freezer for your restaurant kitchen depends largely on your restaurant concept and size. A large refrigerator won’t work if you have limited space, and a small freezer isn’t smart if you work with a lot of frozen products. You also need to keep your food distributor delivery schedule in mind to ensure your refrigeration system can keep up. A smaller refrigerator is suitable if you receive fresh products daily while a larger refrigerator is suitable for once-a-week deliveries.

Types of Restaurant Refrigeration


There are several types of commercial refrigerators and freezers to choose from. Reach-in coolers are common in the kitchen and bar areas as they are low to the ground. They should be isolated from the heat of the cooking line as they keep stored food at safe holding temperatures. Refrigeration drawers are under-counter drawers that can be installed into a cooking line. They’re ideal for holding seafood, poultry, or grill meat for small restaurant kitchens.

Walk-in coolers can range in size from a small closet up to a large living room. These are ideal for holding large boxes of produce, containers of food, and anything large, bulky, and perishable. Restaurant freezers also come as reach-ins or walk-ins depending on the freezing needs of your kitchen. Bar refrigeration coolers are low to the ground and come up to waist level. These are ideal for chilling bottles of wine, beer, bar mixes, and other bottled or canned beverages.

The Restaurant Warehouse offers a wide selection of affordably priced commercial equipment, accessories, and merchandise. The retailer carries everything you need to run a successful kitchen such as prep tables, commercial ovens, undercounter refrigerators, smallwares, and more. They offer to finance on premier refrigeration units like Atosa refrigerators and True Refrigeration. Whether you prefer the beautiful body of a stainless steel unit or want the aesthetics of a glass door refrigerator, choosing the right refrigerator is key to running a successful kitchen.

Keep the condenser position in mind.


An important consideration to keep in mind when choosing a commercial refrigerator is where the condenser will go. This component is responsible for regulating the temperature of the refrigerator or freezer. Bottom-mounted condenser units are ideal in the kitchen where cleaning and maintenance are a priority. Top-mounted condensers don’t get clogged as often, nor do they blow warm air into the refrigerator when it’s opened.

Before making a purchase, carefully measure your kitchen space to ensure there won’t be any space issues. You have to take into account the refrigerator unit’s doors and whether your staff will be able to easily open them. Consider where your refrigerator unit will be installed, the type of cooking happening around it, and which staff members will need convenient access. It’s a good idea to ask your staff if they have any suggestions that would make their jobs easier. If the possibility exists, you may consider changing up the floorplan to improve functionality.

Choosing the best possible commercial refrigerator for your kitchen size and restaurant concept will boost efficiency and improve the quality of your food.