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That Time Tundra Restaurant Supply Was Featured On Top Chef: Restaurant Wars

Restaurant Wars is probably one of the most anticipated episodes of any season of Top Chef. In Restaurant Wars, chefs are tasked with creating a full restaurant concept all within a 24-48 hour period. Projects that take years to accomplish in the real world are given a tight timeline, forcing a team of chefs to collaborate on concept and menu, and deliver it all flawlessly during a real restaurant service.

What could go wrong, right?

From competing egos, to technical challenges, to training a new front of house staff, to assuming the dreaded Executive Chef position (which almost always guarantees a trip home if your team loses), Restaurant Wars isn’t for the faint of heart.

So when given the opportunity to help contestants with their supplies for the challenge, we were more than ready to oblige!

You might have seen us on last night’s episode of restaurant wars for Season 15…..right HERE:

 

 

Missed us?

Here it is again:

OK, so maybe you didn’t catch our 1 second of fame during the show—don’t worry, we won’t hold it against you.

Though we wished we had the opportunity for more screen time to showcase how we helped the cheftestants, it was great to have an opportunity to spend time with the chefs given many of us have been longtime fans of the show. Eager to leverage local companies in many of the challenges featured in season 15, Top Chef wanted to partner with a well-equipped local supplier for help in providing much-needed restaurant equipment, supplies and more for the highly anticipated Restaurant Wars challenge.

And local is just what Tundra Restaurant Supply is.

Tundrites ready for the Top Chef Arrival. From left to right: Rachel Shaw, Oscar Lopez, and Rogelio Diaz. | Photo Credit: Ruben Karel, Tundra Restaurant Supply

 

Did you know that Tundra Restaurant Supply has been in Boulder for 24 years? Throughout that time we’ve developed long-standing relationships with many local restaurants and emerging restaurant chains. In fact, our humble roots started in restaurant parts, with the idea that we could help restaurants save on costly service calls with just a little DIY. At Tundra, we like to do things a little differently. Because many of us hail from the foodservice industry ourselves as chefs, general managers and even service technicians, we understand the challenges facing restaurants firsthand. Our founder, Michael Lewis, promoted having “ways” and not policies, and with that in mind created our list of values that adorn our walls to this day.

We’ve since expanded our catalog to provide our customers with a robust selection of equipment, supplies, disposables and more from the industry’s leading manufacturers—in fact, we have more than 13,500 products in stock at our Boulder warehouse alone!

And all of it was made available to the chefs.

As Seen On TV

It almost didn’t seem real until we saw those BMWs roll into our parking lot. The doors opened and the adrenaline hit us all like a wave. Beyond learning about a red and a grey team, we were given no other details about types of supplies needed or restaurant concepts or even the number of chefs that would be arriving. The chefs were ready, were we?

Rogelio Diaz and Oscar Lopez | Photo Credit: Ruben Karel, Tundra Restaurant Supply
Photo Credit: Ruben Karel, Tundra Restaurant Supply
Photo Credit: Ruben Karel, Tundra Restaurant Supply

It was an artistic display of controlled chaos. The ultimate in controlled chaos.

Two teams of chefs raced up and down the aisles, shouting questions to team members while simultaneously ordering products from Tundrites—sometimes it was difficult discern between the two! Camera crews followed contestants eagerly, while a horde of producers and assistants stood in the wings. From picking up meat grinders, to food storage containers and glassware, our team was ready to help them pick up everything they needed for a winning concept.

Tundrite Rachel Shaw helping Chef Adrienne Cheatham pick out glassware. | Photo Credit: Ruben Karel, Tundra Restaurant Supply
Chef Bruce Kalman with a full cart. | Photo Credit: Ruben Karel, Tundra Restaurant Supply
Chef Christopher “Chris” Scott shopping for essentials. | Photo Credit: Ruben Karel, Tundra Restaurant Supply
Chef Bruce Kalman | Photo Credit: Ruben Karel, Tundra Restaurant Supply

Our showroom only displays a fraction of what we carry in stock. That’s why we had a full team of Tundrites working hard (and fast) to track down everything the chefs needed—down to the last steam pan.

Tundrites Oscar Lopez and Rachel Shaw | Photo Credit: Ruben Karel, Tundra Restaurant Supply
Photo Credit: Ruben Karel, Tundra Restaurant Supply
Photo Credit: Ruben Karel, Tundra Restaurant Supply
Photo Credit: Ruben Karel, Tundra Restaurant Supply
Photo Credit: Ruben Karel, Tundra Restaurant Supply

With their Tundra bags in hand, and carts stocked, the chefs left almost as quickly as they came.

Chef Christopher “Chris” Scott | Photo Credit: Ruben Karel, Tundra Restaurant Supply
Chef Claudette Zepeda-Wilkins | Photo Credit: Ruben Karel, Tundra Restaurant Supply
Photo Credit: Ruben Karel, Tundra Restaurant Supply

 

Once everyone had everything they needed, we could all lighten up a little.

Photo Credit: Ruben Karel, Tundra Restaurant Supply
Tundrites Rachel Shaw and Natalie Fauble pose with Malina Karel | Photo Credit: Ruben Karel, Tundra Restaurant Supply
Photo Credit: Ruben Karel, Tundra Restaurant Supply
Chef Adrienne Cheatham and Chef Bruce Kalman pose with Top Chef fan Malina Karel | Photo Credit: Ruben Karel, Tundra Restaurant Supply

 

 

About Tundra Restaurant Supply

Tundra Restaurant Supply features over 60,000 products including restaurant supplies, equipment and equipment parts , a sweet eCommerce site with all the bells and whistles, a whole restaurant design and opening package team, low prices without sacrificing quality and more smart customer service reps than you can shake a stick at. If you'd like to browse Tundra's site, visit www.etundra.com.

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