December 1, 2016 Robin

The SIZZLE #1: Tommy Hogue from Krystal Hamburgers

Tommy Hogue

The SIZZLE is a new blog series from Filtercorp, sitting down with some of our favorite food industry people to talk food, frying, and the good life.

We had a quick chat with Tommy Hogue: GSM Enterprises / DBA Krystal Restaurants.

Tommy is the Director of Operations for a Krystal Hamburger franchise group in Tennessee, and has worked in Krystal restaurants for 32 years.  He and his wife are also avid Harley-Davidson riders, and have toured all over the Eastern U.S., averaging almost 20,000 miles a year!

Why is frying oil management so important?

The majority of our products are deep fried, and the shortening quality makes all the difference in the food quality and the appearance of the product.  The cleaner and fresher the shortening, the better the food cooks and looks.  Older and darker shortening has a negative impact on the quality of the product and the appearance of the product.

The average joe customer doesn’t see this operation.  But the oil doesn’t have a long life span and the quality deteriorates quickly.  If you’re not taking not caring of it, it will have a negative impact on appearance, taste, and quality of the product.  It can even affect the air quality of the restaurant. 

How did you make the switch to Filtercorp?

When we first met with their team, we did a training session and tested their filters in a couple Krystal restaurants.  We saw that they did a better job filtering, used less filters, without needing to buy additives – pretty much when I saw it I thought this is a good thing and that’s when we switched.  We liked what we saw and have been using them ever since – for around 10 years now.

What were the main benefits of SuperSorb CarbonPads?

The pads can be used twice [per day], whereas paper filters need to be changed everytime, so it’s cost effective in that way.  They also do a better job filtering the product vs. paper filters, and typically a paper filter has an additive powder, called Magnesol, that you have to add to the shortening.  So not only do you save in the number of pads and filters, but you don’t have to buy any extra additives.

It’s also easy to use, and easy for your average team member in the restaurant to take care of the shortening.  You’re going have a better quality product and a better appearing product, so it’s a win-win.

How has Filtercorp affected your product quality?

Our fries are a more golden brown color, and our chicken filets are a better brown color versus a darker color.  When [the filters] are used correctly it’s definitely beneficial in all phases – a higher quality product and better appearing food.

Customers know if you serve an inferior product.  I’ve been in a restaurant as a customer and you get fries and they’re dark, and limp, and greasy and you know the shortening hasn’t been changed or filtered, and they have bad shortening in the fryers.

What’s it like working with the Filtercorp team?

George and the team have been very helpful.  They’ve run training courses for us, attended team meetings, and work with our general managers to make sure everything is being used correctly. 

One time we changed suppliers for our restaurants and were having problems getting the correct filters.  George took it upon himself to determine which model fryer we had in every location, and made sure we had the correct filters in every location.  They’ve gone over and above what you get from a lot of companies in terms of being helpful, assisting us, and making sure we get the right product.

Any final thoughts on the food industry?

The restaurant industry is so competitive, typically there’s a competitor on every street corner.  So any little thing you can you do to ensure cost savings, providing a better quality product, providing a consistent product – you have to take advantage of anything you can to do better than your competitors.  Filtercorp helps you do that.

Can you share a short list of your favorite places to ride?

Texas Hill Country, the North Georgia Mountains, The Dragon [mountain pass along the North Carolina–Tennessee state line], the Adirondack Mountains, and North Carolina’s Outer Banks.

How about your favorite foods?

Krystal’s of course – plus Mexican, pizza, and anything with spice and flavor.

That wraps the SIZZLE #1! Big thanks to Tommy Hogue for taking the time to chat.

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