Le Cordon Bleu London specifies hi tech, sustainable catering equipment

Williams, Falcon and Mono supply Greenlogic models for International Flagship Institute

Le Cordon Bleu has been teaching classic culinary techniques for over 100 years.  A world renowned network of educational institutions that provides the highest level of culinary and hospitality instruction, operating 40 schools in 20 countries and teaching over 20,000 students annually. When Le Cordon Bleu decided to create an International Flagship Institute in London, much of the catering equipment specified for the new kitchens was supplied by The AFE Group, including refrigeration from Williams, prime cooking equipment from Falcon and specialist bakery models from Mono.  The equipment was supplied and installed by Court Catering. 

“50% of our students go on to 4 or 5 star establishments like the Dorchester and the Savoy, a further 40% open their own businesses,” says Larry Montack, Head of Institute.  “They expect to be using the very best facilities.  At the same time, the kitchens are in constant, heavy use.  So the catering equipment has to be top quality, robust and absolutely reliable.

“Internationally Le Cordon Bleu offers in excess of 50 different courses, and the London campus has advanced facilities such as classrooms with interactive technology.  This means we can increase the breadth of courses available to include those in wine and management.  Prior to the development we had in depth discussions with colleagues from around the world to research everything we had achieved over the past ten years in terms of new sites and courses.  London was an opportunity to review our developments, to select the best and most successful initiatives and ensure that we were developing an institute for the future, including the most technologically advanced catering equipment.”

Thus Falcon induction hobs were used extensively in the project.  “It’s the cooking method of the future – for example, the majority of the cruise liners now have induction.  Each of our students have their own range and prep area – the problem in the past has been the difficulty of finding a reliable induction range, with the hob and oven combined.  Falcon is one of the few companies to have developed the technology”

Similarly, the Williams equipment at Le Cordon Bleu features the latest refrigeration technologies.   Cabinets and counters were supplied with CoolSmart controllers, which monitor the equipment operation, only turning on the refrigeration system when it is needed in order to minimise power consumption, saving up to 15% in energy.  The institute’s new blast chillers use WEB (Williams Easy Blast) controllers, which are extremely simple to operate.

Sustainability was another key factor in terms of equipment specification.  “As an organisation we are committed to minimising our carbon footprint and protecting the environment.  Sustainable technology goes hand in hand with financial efficiency so investing in quality, longer lasting equipment makes sound business sense to us.”

All three manufacturers are part of AFE’s Greenlogic initiative, which focuses on helping operators reduce their carbon footprint.  As well as developing ‘greener’ technologies, this involves helping customers to better understand their buying choices: how particular model variations will impact on sustainability, waste reduction, power consumption and so on.

“The induction hobs are fast and efficient, but are only ‘on’ when the pan is on the hob.  That not only saves energy used by the hob, it also cuts down on waste heat, so our extraction isn’t working as hard, which saves energy again.”

The kitchens in the new institute include a basement production kitchen, which produces ingredients for classes; several demonstration areas; a world cuisine kitchen that features equipment such as a tandoori oven; boulangerie, bakery and patisserie areas; and a polyvalent kitchen on the third floor which is designed to adapt to whatever is required – from cuisine kitchen to patisserie.  “In fact, all the kitchens are multi-purpose.  Given the huge range of courses we offer, they have to be.  Again, the equipment we specified had to be able to accommodate that flexibility.”

The flexibility of Williams’ coldroom designs meant the company was able to supply five units, each tailored for a specific storage purpose: fruit and vegetables, fish, meat, general products and a freezer room.

Court Catering’s managing director Nick Howe says: “As you would expect with such a prestigious project, the client’s requirements were very demanding.  The equipment alone was valued at £1.25m and the shopping cart included 51 induction ranges, 21 induction hobs and 79 refrigerated cabinets.”

Williams Refrigeration offers a comprehensive range of solutions, from commercial refrigeration to bakery equipment and including a market-leading choice of gastronorm cabinets, modular storage and reach-in and roll-in blast chillers.


For more information on Le Cordon Bleu London’s facilities and courses visit www.lcblondon.com

To learn more about Williams Refrigeration visit www.williams-refrigeration.co.uk

For more information on Falcon Foodservice Equipment visit www.falconfoodservice.com

For more information on Mono Equipment visit www.monoequip.com

For more information on Court Catering visit www.courtcatering.co.uk