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F&B Service Equipment


Cutlery implies implements used for cutting and eating food. It includes knife, fork and spoon. There are different types of knives, forks and spoons. A complete cutlery set may include butter knife, soup spoon, seafood fork etc.


Different knives are designed to serve specific tasks. Choosing the right knife makes it easier to perform that task. A knife can be designed for striking, chopping, tearing, dicing, spreading, carving or slicing. The difference lies in the blade of the knife whether it is pointed, blunt, serrated etc. Dull blades are used to cut soft or cooked food while serrated knives are easy to cut meat. Non-serrated steak knives allow for a cleaner cut while pointed knives help in cutting or paring fruits. Knife with a broad flat blade is suitable for eating fish while knife with blunt ends is used to spread butter, cheese spreads, marmalades etc.

Dinner knife

Dinner knife is sized between 9 ½ and 10 inches. It is used to cut and push food. It also serves as a replacement for salad knife if latter is not available.

Steak knife

A steak knife can be used in place of dinner knife or in addition to it. It can be serrated or non-serrated depending on specific steak cuts. It is usually four to six inches long.

Luncheon knife

Slightly smaller than dinner knife, luncheon knife is used with luncheon plate to suit the size of the plate. Dinner knife is equally acceptable when luncheon knife is not available.

Fish knife

Fish knife is used when fish is served for dinner. Fish knife measures 8 ¾ inches with a wide blade and dull edge. The tip of fish knife aids in separating layers of fish and lift bones.

Dessert knife

Dessert knife can be used for dessert, fresh or candied fruit. It can be used to cut cakes and pastries. It goes together with the dessert spoon.

Fruit knife

Measuring between 6 ½ and 7 ¼ inches, fruit knife has a pointed tip and a narrow straight. The blade can be serrated or slightly curved. It is meant to cut and peel fruits.

Butter knife

Small in size at 5 to 6 inches, butter knife has a rounded point so that it does not scrape the bread while spreading butter. Dinner knife is equally acceptable if butter knife is not available.


Spoons are used to transfer food from platter or bowl to mouth. There are different types of spoon for specific tasks.

Teaspoon: It is meant for stirring coffee, tea, soups and eating.

Tablespoon: A tablespoon is bigger than a teaspoon and is used for serving food from serving bowls.

Place spoon: It is an all-purpose spoon bigger than a teaspoon but smaller than a tablespoon.

Soup spoon: A large rounded spoon used for eating soup. An oval spoon is used in case soup contains meat, vegetables, bread crumbs etc.

Dessert spoon: It is used for eating sweet dishes and puddings.

Sundae spoon: Long spoons to reach the bottom of sundae glass and eat liquid or semi-liquid food like ice-cream toppings, floats, jelly etc.

Fruit spoon: Fruit spoon has an elongated bowl and a pointed tip that aids in cutting fruit and eating fruits like grapes, oranges and melons.


The two-tined fork is used cut meat while there or four-tined fork has other uses.

Dinner fork: Meant for the main course, dinner fork measures around seven inches.

Salad fork: Used for eating salad, in salad fork outer tines are notched, wider and longer than inner tines. It is six inches in length.

Forks with extra-long tines: Such forks are meant for eating spaghetti, noodles.

Dessert fork: It is used for eating cake, pies and pastries. It is more or less similar to salad fork.

Fish fork: It is used for holding and serving fish. Tines are uniform in width and length.

Sea food fork: Sea food fork is ideal for eating crustaceans. Also called crab fork, lobster fork, it serves two purposes. The double-pronged slim end is used to pick sea food while the curved scraper is used to scoop out the meat.


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China is a term used for crockery whether bone china (expensive and fine), earthenware (opaque and cheaper) or vitrified (metallized). Most catering crockery used nowadays tends to be vitrified earthenware, which is very durable and haven been strengthened. Chinaware is made of silica, soda ash, and china clay, glazed to give a fine finish. Chinaware is more resistant to heat than glassware and can be found in different colours and designs which are always coated with glaze.

There are many classifications of catering china they are:

Bone china: Bone china is porcelain made of clay mixed with bone ash. This is very fine, hard china that is very expensive. The decorations are to be found under the glaze only. The price of bone china puts it out of reach of the majority of everyday caterers, and only a few of the top-class hotels and restaurants would use it. The range of design, pattern and colour is very wide and there is something to suit all occasions and situations.

Porcelain: Porcelain is a ceramic material made by heating selected and refined materials, which often includes clay of kaolinite clay, to high temperatures. The raw materials for porcelain, when mixed with water, form a plastic body that can be worked to a required shape before firing in a kiln at temperatures between 1200°C and 1400°C. The toughness, strength, and translucence of porcelain arise mainly from the formation of glass at high temperatures and the mineral malate within the fired body.

Earthenware: Earthenware may sometimes be as thin as bone china and other porcelains, though it is not translucent and is more easily chipped. Earthenware is also less strong, less tough, and more porous than stoneware, but its low cost and easier working compensate for these deficiencies. Due to its higher porosity, earthenware must usually be glazed in order to be watertight.

Stoneware: Stoneware is a hard pottery made from siliceous paste fired at high temperature to vitrify (make glassy) the body. Stoneware is heavier and opaquer than porcelain. The usual colour of fired stoneware tends to be greyish, though there may be a wide range of colours, depending on the clay. It has been produced in China since ancient times and is the forerunner of Chinese porcelain.

Different types of crockery and their sizes

Quarter Plate

  • 6’’(15cm diameter)

  • Used to keep bread, cheese or as an underliner

  • It is also known as B&B Plate (bread & butter, under plate, side Plate

Half Plate

  • 8’’ (20 cm diameter)

  • Used to serve starters, pasta, dessert, fish etc

  • It is also known as dessert plate, fish plate

Full Plate

  • 10’’ (25cm diameter)

  • Used to serve main course

  • It is also known as dinner plate, joint plate, meat plate

Soup bowl

  • 250ml

  • Used to serve soup, breakfast cereals

Soup cup

  • 250ml

  • Used to serve thin soup

  • It is also known as a consommé cup and has two handles.

Soup Plate

  • 8’’ (20 cm diameter)

  • Used to serve both thick and thin soup

  • Half plate is used as an underliner. It is not in use nowadays

Breakfast cup

  • 240-300 ml (8-10 Fl oz)

  • Used to serve all tea and coffee during breakfast

Tea Cup

  • 200 ml (6 2/3Fl oz)

  • Used to serve tea during the day

Coffee cup

  • 97-100 ml

  • Used to serve coffee after lunch or dinner

  • It is also known as demi-tasse.

Other china ware are

1. Salad crescent

2. Egg cup

3. Ashtray

4. Creamer

5. Coffee / tea pot

6. Sugar basin

7. Milk jug


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Flatware and Hollow-ware


Flatwares are any equipment that is used to cut or pick food and has a flat surface. The purpose of these types of equipment is to cut, pick or tear food while eating.

Examples: – Spoons, Forks, Knives, etc.


Hollow-wares are equipment such as sugar bowls, creamers, coffee pots, teapots, soup tureens, hot food covers, water jugs, platters, butter pat plates, and other items that go with the flatware on a table. It does not include cutlery or other metal utensils. Hollowware is used to hold food and must have a hollow space.


Other Equipment Used in F&B Service: Its Uses and Storage


  • For transporting cutlery, glassware, hollowware. Dishes, and so on. Rectangular shape.

  • Side Board


  • For transporting glassware, drinks, coffee, and tea service. Round shape

  • Side Board

Water Jug

  • For the service of water.

  • Side Board

Entrée dishes

  • For portioning out dishes and taking to guests ‘table. Different portion sizes are available.

  • Hot Plate/ pick-up counter


  • For transporting food to the guest table.

  • Hot Plate

Bread Basket

  • Cane basket for holding bread rolls/bread, Indian breads such as roti, naan, kulcha, and so on. Lined with aluminum foil or napkin

  • Pantry

Butter Dish

  • To hold butter cubes or curls. Placed on table just before service.

  • Side Board

Butter Knife

  • Comes with butter dish. Used for taking butter.

  • Side Board


  • Salt and pepper cellars. Salt cellar has few holes and the pepper many. Mustard pot is also a part of cruets. Few establishments keep this on table.

  • Side Board

Bud Base

  • For keeping small flower arrangement on the dining table.

  • Still Room

Menu Stand

  • To hold table d’ hote menu card.

  • Side Board

Table Number

  • Small-sized piece of metal with number printed, kept on the table.

  • Side Board


  • For cigarette or cigar ash. Not kept on dining table beforehand. Placed just before coffee service or when customers want to smoke.

  • Side Board


  • For holding large quantities of soup, to portion out into soup bowls at the table.

  • Pantry

Soup Ladle

  • To serve soup form the tureen.

  • Pantry

Sauce Boats

  • To present accompanying sauces and serve.

  • Pantry

Sauce Ladle

  • To serve the sauce from the sauce boat.

  • Pantry

Wine Cooler

  • To hold ice shavings to keep white wine chilled.

  • Pantry

Wine Cradle

  • To hold red wine bottle.

  • Sideboard


  • To decant red wine.

  • Pantry


  • To serve carafe wine and to hold carbonated water.

  • Pantry

Coffee Pot

  • Tall slender pot to hold coffee.

  • Pantry

Tea Pot

  • Short, stout pot to hold tea.

  • Pantry

Tea Strainer

  • To strain tea.

  • Pantry

Creamer/ Milk Jug

  • To hold milk and cream.

  • Pantry

Sugar Bowl

  • To hold sugar cubes/granulated sugar.

  • Pantry

Sugar Tongs

  • To pick up sugar cube.

  • Pantry

Toast Rack

  • To present toasts. It is a rack with 8-10 slots to hold toasts.

  • Pantry


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Preserves Dish

  • To hold preserves-jam, marmalade, honey.

  • Pantry

Preserves Spoon

  • For taking preserves.

  • Pantry


  • Made of thick cloth and cotton used to cover the tea and coffee pots during service to retain heat

  • Pantry

Candle Stand

  • For holding candles. Placed on the dining table.

  • Pantry

Fruit Stand

  • To display fresh fruit.

  • Pantry

Straw Holder

  • For holding straws. Placed on the dining table.

  • Pantry

Chafing Dish

  • To keep food warm during service by using chemi-fuel/gas /electricity

  • Pantry

Salad Bowls

  • Wooden /glass /china bowl, to dress & serve salads.

  • Pantry

Cheese Knife

  • Kept on cheese board/trolley to cut and pick cheese.

  • Pantry

Grapefruit Spoon

  • Used with grapefruit. Tea spoon can be substituted.

  • Pantry

Caviar knife

  • Used with caviar. Slightly curved blade. Fish knife can be substituted.

  • Pantry

Carving Knife & Fork

  • Found on carving trolley or sideboard. Used for carving joints of meat, poultry, and game.

  • Pantry

Snail Dish

  • Round dish with 8-10 indentations to hold snails.

  • Pantry

Snail Fork

  • A two-prong fork, used to pick flesh from shells.

  • Pantry

Snail Tongs

  • To pick and hold snails.

  • Pantry

Oyster Fork

  • To open oyster shells.

  • Pantry

Grape Scissors

  • To hold and cut bunch of grapes.

  • Pantry

Fondue Fork

  • A long-handled fork with two prongs. Used to dip cubes of meat, bread, and so on, in hot oil or melted cheese. Fondu in French means melted.

  • Pantry

Pastry Fork

  • Three pronged fork, left prong being broader than the other two. Used to cut and eat pastries.

  • Pantry

Gateaux Slice

  • Used for serving pastries/cake. Found on a gateaux trolley/tray.

  • Pantry

Corn on the Cob Holder

  • Trident-shaped equipment pierced into the cob while serving.

  • Pantry

Nut Cracker

  • Used to crack walnut, almonds and so on.

  • Pantry

Cocotte Dish

  • Earthenware dish, eggs are cooked and presented in the same dish.

  • Main kitchen

Chinese Cruet

  • Bowls containing chilli vinegar, soya sauce, and chilli sauce. Offered with Chinese Dishes.

  • Sideboards

Ice Cream Scoop

  • To scoop out and serve ice cream.

  • Pantry/still room

Pastry tongs

  • To pick and serve pastries.

  • Pantry

Toothpick Stand

  • To hold toothpicks

  • Sideboards

Egg Stand

  • To serve boiled egg.

  • Still room


  • Oval or rectangular dish used for presenting hors d’ oeuvres, pastas, rice, and so on.

  • Garde manger/main kitchen


  • Used for baked eggs, custards, soufflés. Available in various sizes.

  • Sweet section


  • Used for fruit and sea food cocktails and ice cream.

  • Pantry/garde manger


  • Cracker To crack claws of lobster.

  • Pantry

Lobster Pick

  • To pick flesh of lobster.

  • Pantry


  • Use for opening the wine bottle

  • Sideboards

Salad Plate

  • Crescent-shaped plate, used for serving salads.

  • Pantry/garde manger


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