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Tinybud
01-09-2010, 07:13 PM
A couple weeks ago I was talking to a friend that is on the board for our local American Legion (wasn't a member at the time) Starting asking a few questions about their kitchen and dining room. He said that they just renewed their license with the health dept, but no one was using the kitchen, so I inquired with him about using it to open up to the members and use it for our catering business, He loved the idea of having someone in their using it, Had a board meeting, and staring Jan. 15th Tiny's Bar-b-que will be opening up to the members and guest of the Beech Creek, PA American Legion. Only cost we have for using the facility is to cover the increase in their electric, and the propane we use, which they have a seperate propane tank for the kitchen. We're really excited to get started, Have worked out a pretty good menu. I know allot of folks here have been looking for a commercial space to do some cooking out of, take a look at your local social clubs as more than likely they have a commercial kitchen and might not have anyone using it.. So 2010 is starting off good for us. Hoping it all goes well..

Bbq Bubba
01-09-2010, 07:25 PM
Outstanding! :biggrin:

tmcmaster
01-11-2010, 01:39 AM
Thats great news! I am in a similar situation with the local Catholic War Veterans post (which my father is currently commander of...:icon_blush:) for them to sponger my competition team for the low-low cost of allowing me access to the licensed kitchen for catering...

armor
01-11-2010, 05:30 AM
that's great! I may check into that.

fireman_pete
01-11-2010, 10:23 AM
We are trying to work a similiar deal with our local Elks Lodge.

Pete

Tweedle
01-11-2010, 10:49 AM
Hoy chit why didn't i think of that! Thats great news for yo guys! congrats and good luck

1FUNVET
01-11-2010, 12:52 PM
As a past American Legion Post Commander,i know the only time our kitchen was used was for benefits or fund raisers.This was probably every 2-3 months and the rest of the time the kitchen did not seen any use unless some one rented the hall .

BBQ_MAFIA
01-11-2010, 04:43 PM
Congrats on the good news. I wish you good luck.

musicmanryann
01-18-2010, 11:08 AM
So for Tinybud and others who do this, are you driving your smokers up to the place do the prep inside and cook in the parking lot? I am trying to do this as well, but am having a difficult time figuring out logistics. Thanks!

bam
01-18-2010, 01:39 PM
Best of luck now that you are legal. My family had a deal with a local bar that wasn't using their kitchen.The owners sold the place new owners had their own people. Where is Beech Creek Pa.? Any where near Philly?

bbqpitstop
01-18-2010, 05:57 PM
This is exactly how I started my bbq business years ago using a local moose lodge's kitchen. A little unsolilcited advise to keep it running smooth.

Always take a thorough beginning inventory of all smallwares so that upon outgrowing the facility there won't be dispute as to what is whos

Always leave the kitchen cleaner than you found it, everday.

Come to an agreement in advance regarding who else can use the kitchen in the case of events or other groups bringing in their own food.

Agree whether you will offer your food to outside sources or the public and if they are allowed entry to the lodge to pickup.

Consider allowing other members to learn how to run your smoker and to use it for their non profit fundraising efforts. It shows goodwill and creates more interest in bbq itself

Coordinate what type of safeguards you'll have in place should you end up hiring help. Protection from theft, damage, etc. are important to lodges due to slim operating budgets.

Offer to pay for the cleaning of hoods, exhausts and occasional thorough cleaning of floors if you're utilizing the fryers, salamanders or grills.

Ultimately we had a great experience with this as a startup venue and we still retain a lot of customers from our Moose lodge. We eventually went to a public venue to have our own kitchen but overall it was a cost effective way to test the water on the marketability of our product.

Good going and I highly recommend this for anyone thinking of starting a restaurant so they can get a taste of what it's really like to be responsible for the day to day operation before laying out the big bucks.

Bbq Bubba
01-18-2010, 06:25 PM
So for Tinybud and others who do this, are you driving your smokers up to the place do the prep inside and cook in the parking lot? I am trying to do this as well, but am having a difficult time figuring out logistics. Thanks!

If this is how i had to go, then yes. Everything would have to be prepped and cooked at the commissary. In some states, this still may not even work as you have to have your cooker enclosed so check your local regs before you get carried away.

billm
01-20-2010, 09:51 AM
A couple weeks ago I was talking to a friend that is on the board for our local American Legion (wasn't a member at the time) Starting asking a few questions about their kitchen and dining room. He said that they just renewed their license with the health dept, but no one was using the kitchen, so I inquired with him about using it to open up to the members and use it for our catering business, He loved the idea of having someone in their using it, Had a board meeting, and staring Jan. 15th Tiny's Bar-b-que will be opening up to the members and guest of the Beech Creek, PA American Legion. Only cost we have for using the facility is to cover the increase in their electric, and the propane we use, which they have a seperate propane tank for the kitchen. We're really excited to get started, Have worked out a pretty good menu. I know allot of folks here have been looking for a commercial space to do some cooking out of, take a look at your local social clubs as more than likely they have a commercial kitchen and might not have anyone using it.. So 2010 is starting off good for us. Hoping it all goes well..
same question as BBQ Bubba ive been thinking of doing this at our local AL as well...issue is other than meat prep who is cooking the BBQ in a kitchen? Its still being done on a smoker that does not reside in the actual kitchen thus the health dept by me frowns on it..so not sure what the use of an approved commercial kitchen will buy me

JD McGee
01-20-2010, 10:11 AM
Wow...what an offer! Congrats! :biggrin: I'm still lookin' for a catering kitchen here...:roll:

smoke it if ya got it
01-20-2010, 10:41 AM
Wow...what an offer! Congrats! :biggrin: I'm still lookin' for a catering kitchen here...:roll:
Hey JD Have you tried some of the local schools some of them offer a kitchen rental for local events. That's what I plan on using over here. My wife working there also helps. They are charging me $25.00 bucks each time. It's mainly for community members.

Tinybud
01-20-2010, 11:38 PM
Lots of good feedback and good questions from ya all, as I expected from this forum. Just to touch base on a few of the comments and questions. In the state of pennsylvania, as long as the smoker/cooker has a lid and food is covered during the cooking process its legal. We are not open to the public, its is for Legion members and their guest. I do a full clean up every night, will take care of any maintence of kitchen equipment as long as I'm using it, ie cleaning of the hood, etc. Only other cooking that was being done is for the Post Meetings ever 3rd tuesday of the month, but after last nights meeting, we will now be catering that meeting for them. I have extended an offer to teach/help in there fundraising events. So far its been a win win situation. They are getting a few more members, and the current members are really supporting us in having the kitchen open. One thing to keep in mind, you must follow not only health department code, but also liquour control board codes, especailly with cigerate smoking laws. Allot of states smoking laws are still very unclear in what is allowed and not allowed in clubs such as Amercian Legions, Moose, VFW, etc. As thing progress and we move forward, I'll share what I learn as it may help others. but I do feel as thou it is a great way to get started,, gives a person a good feel as to what to expect if he/she wants to open their own place.