02 March 2008

French Cuisine and other parties...

Each year at the Hearth Show we are treated to some great treats, and some eye opening events by our suppliers. This year was no exception. The PFI lunch is always the first meeting/gathering. I was a little disappointed this year. It is the first time I walked out wondering why I had bothered all these years... The intros were fine, the usual report on how the manufacturers aren't working together was not a surprise. A half an hour selling the hotel that the next meeting is at-wtf! The industry group we belong to gave their usual negative reports on pellet. Then they wasted an inordinate amount of time talking about a wood stove changeout program that had absolutely nothing to do with biomass. The one manufacturer who did talk, said we didn't need to waste our time and energy on the consumer, we needed to give all of our money to lobbyists to promote commercial uses of pellet (to the crowd full of hearth retailers!), ending with some schmuck from the industry's magazine who ended his vomitous rendition of where pellet is with a quote and the meeting with the words of some senile old wood burner who said,"...pellet stoves aren't worth a shit!" Nice.
The NorthEast's Beer in the Bathtub was a great way to kick off the Show as always. The food was gone in a flash, but we caught up with our fellow dealers and had a good time all around. We even saw a few faces that had been absent last year.

We launched the show at the Harman booth. Very happy to see that very little if anything had changed. The one new face was the new operations manager VP. VP is his name, I didn't ask... They had a couple of new products which is more than I can say for most. There were a few European companies there with biomass product which was great to see. Also a fair number of pellet manufacturers had booths, and even a pellet mill company so that was good to see.
We did sneak out with one of our sales reps to go to the World's largest aquarium and out to lunch- a sushi place of course!

We spent the evening with our Canadian manufacturers. We went to the Canadian reception with them which made our little northeast party look like tea time. There was a rowdy crowd, hockey, and lots of food, and drink. Then we went to a real hockey game (my first ever) and had a great time. I was the only girl, but they didn't seem to mind too much. At eleven that night we hit the town to find food ending up at a great restaurant where most of the guys had lamb, or tenderloin. I had soup because it was way past my turn into a pumpkin hour. The final night we had so many options. One rep wanted to take us to a Brazilian place (did that in Vegas...), we had the pipe company's party, Lennox's big Coke party, and an invite to Harman's dinner. We opted for the last as we are always in for a treat when Karen picks a dining experience for us. So what do you get when you spend a weeks budget on your meal? (and another week's on your spouses?) A gastronomical delight.

I traded my oysters for Art's fois gras

Art and I had lamb for the main course. Glorias Seafood trio with champagne foam looked incredible as well!

The cheese course.

I had a grand marnier souffle for my dessert course.

Art had a chocolate tart for his dessert course.
The Harman crew du jour.

The meal ended with Roses for the ladies, and chocolates for the men.

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