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Anybody know of a restaurant supply store that sells to the general public?

I keep reading that you get the best deals on quality items by skipping Crate & Barrel and shopping at a restaurant supply store instead. Anybody know of one near Cambridge? Also, please share any experiences you've had trying this approach. Thanks, Rob.

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  1. Perhaps if you can let us know what you are looking for more specifically, we can point you in the right direction.

    4 Replies
    1. re: Food4Thought

      Right now I need some stainless mixing bowls, half sheet pans, and a v-slicer/mandolin. In general I want to know if going to a restaurant supply shop for these types of things is a good idea.

      1. re: robertjparks

        On most of those items you will most likely get a better deal at a restaurant supply shop, in particular the sheet pans and bowls, but these will be more utilitarian in design and not so much for entertaining.

        From time to time Crate& Barrel runs a good deal on a Pro-sumer grade mandolin for about $60.00, commercial grade can run upwards of $125.00 easily.
        I'm not sure about food service/ restaurant supply specific vendors to Cambridge, but by and large a restaurant supply place might be your best bet.

        1. re: robertjparks

          There's a place in JP called BMS. It's on Washington St near Green. I've bought half sheet pans there. They are very inexpensive but not the same quality as the ones I've bought at Sur La Table. Stop by Canto6 bakery - it's on the next block.

          1. re: robertjparks

            I've read the responses, and you will get the best prices for the half and quarter sheet pans at Eastern Baking Supply. I have bought numerous Benriner mandolins at the place at the corner of Harrison and Beach St in Chinatown that Yumyum mentions,
            above...These are the ones you will see online for $34 and up...
            I'm guessing Eastern Bakers would also be the best for bowls. Call them before you go, and they will clue you in to where to park during your visit.

        2. Hey robertjparks,

          While I can't help with location in your area, (I'm in Portland, OR) it has been my experience here on the west coast that every restaurant supply store will sell to the general public. The prices for the mixing bowls and half pans will be cheaper, but the selection, especially for the half pans, will be limited to restaurant grade aluminium or steel, both of which you will want to use partchment paper on whenever possible.

          For the V-slicer/mandoline, I would recommend checking out an Asian market/supermarket. I haven't found a restaurant supply place that has them, and the Asian markets usually have them at market/below-market prices.

          Yoroshiku,
          Andy

          4 Replies
          1. re: AndyP

            I agree with the mandoline. Mosy Asian markets sell Bebriner slicers at @ $25. and they are sharper. I've bought at many rest supply stores. Near Cambridge are Harbor and Eastern Bakers in Boston.Seidmans in Chinatown and some Banh Mi after.

            1. re: trufflehound

              I got my benriner at the restaurant supply store in Chinatown next to the See Sun market. Sorry I don't know the name, but it's on the north west corner of Harrison and Beach. It was $20.

              They also have stainless steel bowls, woks, cleavers, chinese tea cups, spoons, etc. It's a fun place to pop into.

              1. re: yumyum

                Here is a link to a Places entry which I believe is correct (at least the MAP will be correct, nobody has confirmed telephone yet). Related threads get repeated fairly regularly (restaurant supply, knife sharpening, and asian/chinese cookware), might be something we could consider adding some suggested search terms to the sticky at the top of the forum? Some recent related threads....

                http://www.chowhound.com/topics/155915
                http://www.chowhound.com/topics/359884
                http://www.chowhound.com/topics/449956

                On the slicers, Reliable in Union usually has them. Someone mentioned a nicer Costco house brand slicer (all stainless) for not much money, but I never saw it at the Everett store?? And Marshalls/TJ Max has the chinese slicers from time to time.

                -----
                Chin Enterprises
                33 Harrison Ave, Boston, MA 02111

                1. re: yumyum

                  Also at Ming's (South End) for $20

            2. china fair (http://www.chinafairinc.com

              )

              not technically a "restaurant supply store" but i'm pretty sure it has what you're looking for and at pretty decent prices. the website only lists the newton location, but they have one right by porter sq

              2100 Massachusetts Ave
              Cambridge, MA 02140
              (617) 864-3050

              1. Superior Outlet Center
                165 Dexter Ave
                Watertown, MA 02472
                (617) 926-0999

                1. Eastern Bakers Supply CO.
                  145 North Washington Street
                  Boston, MA 02114
                  Phone: 617-742-0228
                  They also offer warranties on items above a certain amount. The only other one I go to is Restaurant Depot but they don't sell to the "general public"

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: FoodArt

                    This place is terrific and has been there for years and years. I bought heavy-duty spatulas that have lasted forever.