A Winning Goal: How Smart Food Storage is Changing BBVA Bancomer Stadium

Opened in 2015, the BBVABancomerStadium seats a staggering 51,000 soccer spectators, most commonly fans of the Club deFútbolMonterrey. With a price tag of $200 million dollars, the Kansas City architectural firm behind its creation spared no amenity - with dual club lounges and more than 300 luxury suites, fans are in for a premium experience in every aspect of the word.

A Wide Range of Dining Options

Boasting a feast for the eyes, the view from each of the venue's seats is rivaled only by the impressive menus available during the game. As guests take in the game from live views and over 900 television monitors, they'll have their pick of no less than 25 venues for delectable food. These include a pair of full-service, field-view restaurants -CapitanesandAzulRestaurant and Bar - along with 15 casual dining options along the upper deck and 4 pantry-style offerings in the suites.

A Challenge Met

This diverse dining approach requires a substantial amount of coordination behind the scenes. Like the players on the field below, food service workers in theBBVA Bancomer Stadium need to rely on a "team" of coworkers, smart transportation routes through the facility, and dependable food service cabinets and tools to maintain optimum temperature. With menus ranging from American far like burgers, pizza, and hot dogs to more regional fare like soup, chimichangas and rice, there's no such thing as a "one size fits all" approach. With more than 54,000 customers waiting in the wings on big match days, poor service or incorrect food temperatures have no place at the facility's 44 sales points. That's where C5 3 Series Heated Holding Cabinets with Insulation Armour™ by Metro® come in.

“They help us transport the food from the main kitchen to each of the 44 selling points in the stadium while keeping the food at the right temperatures while it is in transit and staged at the selling points,” explained Ignacio Leon, Executive Sub-Chef for Eurest. “With the Metro C5, we’re able to serve each plate at the same temperature and quality, no matter if it’s the first or the last plate of the night.”

With the food cooked, plated, packaged and staged in each of the 62 full-height C5 heated cabinets within the stadiums 10,700 square foot main kitchen, serving at precise temperatures throughout the day becomes easier. Staff begin working at 7 a.m. to prep the food that will be delighting patrons and securing a positive reputation for the food at the facility throughout the games playing on the field below.

Leon expanded on this attitude of excellence, and how it's supported by the presence of the heated cabinets: “We make sure that the food comes out from the cooking stations at a temperature of between 80 degrees C and 85 degrees C (176 degrees F to 185 degrees F). That enables us to plate or package it and get it quickly into the Metro C5 cabinets, where it is held at a consistent 65 degrees C (149 degrees F),”

He further explained that the consistency of temperature makes all the difference in taste. “I’ve worked with other holding cabinets that don’t maintain constant temperatures, or that will do so for a few months and then start malfunctioning. When that happens, we have to manually check the temperature every five minutes. When you’re getting ready to serve more than 50,000 people over a very short time window, you can’t have that uncertainty.”

Empowering Better Food Service

The versatility offered by these heated cabinets is what allows professionals like Leon to adequately balance needs throughout the impressively large sporting facility. With 36 cabinets permanently installed in venues as holding / staging areas, 18 more are used to transport hot foods from the central kitchen to their permanently-installed counterparts. An additional four cabinets are pre-loaded and used in the pantry areas in the VIP sections, with the final four serving the smaller serving venues that lack space or ability to have stationary units. With this setup in place, the food service teams only have to coordinate replenishment to the Metro C5 cabinet units, and fans get their fill of hot, delicious food throughout the stadium. Finally, with customization options like team colors available for their exteriors, these cabinets are more than tools for superior food service - they also become an effortless part of the rich visual experience of game day