Equipment provided by Lynn-based Williams Refrigeration is now at the heart of catering facilities at one of Ireland’s most important racecourses, The Curragh.
Williams, whose head office is in Bryggen Road on North Lynn Industrial Estate, has provided a comprehensive selection of equipment worth around £350,000 to furnish kitchens, bars and storage areas at the venue, which has the potential to host thousands of visitors on race days.
The course is one of the major flat-racing courses in the world. A massive refurbishment project saw the stunning Aga Khan stand being opened in April 2019. It has space for more than 6,000 people over four floors.
Catering is a hugely important part of the operation at The Curragh. It provides everything from à la carte restaurants, casual dining and cafés, to a selection of street food and grab-and-go operations, so having the right refrigeration equipment is vital.
Malcolm Harling, the sales and marketing director at Williams, was involved in the project.He said: “We were delighted to win such a prestige project in Ireland where the customer and the consultant, Intoto design, selected equipment that would not only stand up to heavy use but offer many years of service.”
The project was installed by Kaneco Commercial Kitchen Specialists. Project manager Keith Mulvaney said: “We’re creating a world class venue. We’ve basically rebuilt everything that was here. It was vital that we could trust the equipment suppliers to work with the kind of precise schedule we required, which is why working with Williams for refrigeration was so easy.”
A vast array of Williams equipment was required to meet The Curragh’s requirements. This covers every step of the catering workflow, from bulk storage modular coldrooms to storage refrigerators, blast chillers and prep tables as well as bar fridges and wine coolers.
Williams coldrooms are made with modular components that allows them to be constructed to the site’s specifications, meaning they can be configured precisely and installed in locations where more standard solutions wouldn’t fit.
The Curragh’s head chef Fergal Nugent said: “We have a coldroom for incoming goods, which has five internal sections with different temperature ranges that lets us store fish, meat, vegetables and dairy in perfect condition, as well as a freezer too. It’s hygienic and safe, and it also makes it easy for staff to find what they need.”
Race days can see The Curragh’s caterers having to prepare food for thousands. With such large potential number of covers, the blast chillers are a vital part of the process. “We do a lot of bulk cooking to prepare for the big days,” said Fergal. “Obviously food safety is paramount, and with the Williams blast chillers we can be sure that what gets chilled retains the same quality as when it was cooked.”
Some of the 56 undercounter fridges at The Curragh are public facing, being installed in private suites and bars. “Williams equipment is tough enough to survive professional kitchens, but it also looks great with the overall décor,” says Fergal.
Williams has decades of experience with such complex projects, providing clients with training and support for their new equipment. “They’ve been fantastic,” says Fergal. “The training is great – they came in to tell us everything we need to know, and if I’ve had questions since then they’ve responded really fast.
Simon Gillott, director of Intoto, said: “Williams was able to offer equipment that met the design and specification requirements, and to offer professional support during the whole design and installation process.The commitment and technical ability of the Williams team was key to the success of the installation.”